Sony Ericsson today announced plans to open its first dedicated store in central London enabling consumers to touch and try Sony Ericsson products, learn more about new features and applications first-hand in a relaxed, fun environment. The store, which will open at the end of November, will be located in Kensington High Street, one of London's prime retail locations.
The new store will provide consumers with a warm and inviting environment where they can come to interact with the Sony Ericsson brand, ask questions and feel comfortable to experiment with new products, services and applications. Specially trained expert staff will be on hand to assist visitors who will also be able to purchase new Sony Ericsson phones, accessories and PC cards connected to a wide range of operator networks as part of a contract, prepay or upgrade package, thanks to an cooperation agreement with Carphone Warehouse who will operate and manage the store.
At street level, 7,300 feet will be dedicated to creating a best-in-class consumer experience bringing all Sony Ericsson's products to life through demonstrations showcasing the product line-up's music, imaging, gaming and connectivity capabilities. Emphasis will be placed on visitors to the store gaining hands-on experience with the products. Special customized events and promotions will target different categories of phones users, from established Sony Ericsson fans to potential new customers who have yet to experience the Sony Ericsson brand.
The basement level of the store will be customized to give Sony Ericsson new customer and corporate meeting and demonstration space, reflecting the need for additional central London facilities as the company grows to fulfil its ambitions of becoming one of the top three global mobile handset manufacturers.
The Sony Ericsson store in London will reflect the new brand elements announced today in conjunctions with the company's 5th anniversary celebrations, and be the first of a number of similar retail spaces offering a fully Sony Ericsson branded experience in key cities throughout the world.
Coinciding with its 5th anniversary celebration, Sony Ericsson today unveils a new look for its global mobile phone brand. Based on a simple core concept and a new colourful execution, the company's famous green logo, known as the liquid identity, is wrapped within a message that focuses on the individual and their feelings for what Sony Ericsson's products, accessories and applications enable them to do. The result is an engaging new brand treatment that will differentiate Sony Ericsson, and project the full attributes of the company's innovative mobile phones.
Designed by leading global brand consultancy Wolff Olins, the new look will be rolled out from this month.
"Sony Ericsson is entering a phase of aggressive growth and to succeed it is important that people everywhere can connect with us at every level," says Dee Dutta, CVP and Head of Marketing for Sony Ericsson. "Over the past five years our brand has become established in the minds of our consumers. Now it is time for us to appeal to both the minds and the hearts of consumers. The mobile device will become increasingly central to our lives in many different ways and as this happens it is vital that our brand stands out above others with energy, passion and excitement," he adds.
The brand identity includes a new range of vibrant colours, deliberately selected to stand out from the white, grey, black and blue tones used by most technology brands today. In addition to the new colours, there is a strong central concept comprising two key elements - a worded message and the portrayal of sentiment around the Sony Ericsson liquid identity. The rules are simple: the message always starts with 'I', the individual, followed by the liquid identity and then a message relating to the things the individual loves, cares about or is inspired by. This framework can be applied in any number of ways, in any language, connecting with the audience visually and instantly.
Andrew Warner, Head of Brand Management for Sony Ericsson, explains how the identity is designed to connect with its audience: "As soon as you see this there is immediate engagement between you and the Sony Ericsson brand. The message is that it is treating you as an individual - it is not telling you what to think about Sony Ericsson, it is reflecting what you think. This is not just a traditional, static brand identity. We plan to increase our use of interactive media to build a dialogue with consumers around the world and effectively start co-creating our brand messages with them."
"People want to know how our products can add to their life - how connected they can be, how much fun they can have, how much better they can work, and more. Our new brand identity relates our products to the things people care about in a very simple way. It is focused less on what's inside the products and more on what consumers get out of them," he concludes.
Simplicity is the underlying principle that runs through every aspect of Sony Ericsson's business, from product design to marketing, so the new brand look will further strengthen the company's commitment to this approach. Adam Throup, Creative Director at Wolff Olins elaborates: "We are developing a distinctive global brand that is flexible enough to embrace local differences, speaking directly to people about what they want and what the love doing."