July 25, 2019

Reinventing Spaces: Retailtainment

Modern retail venues are constantly evolving – merging entertainment with shopping to create lifestyle destinations for people to shop, eat, drink, socialize and work. They are ultimately redefining retailing into retailtainment.

Coined by American sociologist George Ritzer in 1999, retailtainment points to the fast-growing trend of in-store customer experiences and shopping-center-based attractions through the adoption of high-end AV technologies, experiential attractions, eSports and more.


Why Retailtainment?

A recent GFK study found that 59 percent of 20-29 year-olds and 57 percent of 30-39 year-olds agree that “experiences are more important than possessions.” This Millennial Movement, along with their online shopping habits, is driving a retail revolution, propelling the demand for engagement in the purchase process and out-of-home experiences. Brands and corporations are no longer competing on price and product alone. Not only do stores have to promote themselves to consumers, but shopping venues must continually reinvent themselves to remain attractive to the best tenants.


While bowling lanes and cineplexes have become established forms of first-generation entertainment, they are no longer points of differentiation. As such, shopping centers are now offering unique attractions to retain existing customers and draw in new visitors with experiences such as virtual reality experiences, a virtual reality gaming center or even a high-tech wildlife park.

Applying Principles of Attraction Experiences to Retail

Storytelling is at the core of retailtainment. Storytelling is all about creating of a narrative that connects with audiences through a blend of technology, interactivity, design and personalization. By adopting the principles of location-based attractions and experiences, retailtainment translates what brands represent into shopping center and store-based interactions, with technology as an overlay to communicate their story.


Electrosonic has delivered hundreds of interactive experiences demonstrating how organizations can seamlessly fuse technology and storytelling to increase engagement.

Designing a Retailtainment Experience for the Future

With an overabundance of creative direction and technology choices available, the landscape for designing a new or transforming an existing retail space with retailtainment experiences is vast.


Electrosonic has decades of experience gained from working with retail space architects, designers and operators, delivering projects that bridge technology, storytelling and design to create compelling, scalable and future-proof retailtainment experiences. Click here to learn more.







Victoria Cosgrave

Victoria Cosgrave, Field Marketing Manager, Enterprise at Electrosonic, has wide-ranging experience of technology within professional services, financial services, infrastructure, transport, pharmaceuticals and government. Her knowledge and experience enables her to write about the technological landscape and the issues facing clients with great insight.