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  • Writer's pictureAmanda Wolfson

Creating Immersive Environments: A Case Study in Market Research and Experiential Marketing for Procter & Gamble

I had the opportunity to work on a unique project where experiential marketing and market research collide. Procter & Gamble enlisted the creative power of New York-based Grey Agency to create an immersive environment to conduct market research for one of their feminine care products.

Grey hired me to design 4 unique spaces in a Chicago home for a market research project, where numerous women would visit. Leveraging my expertise as an interior stylist and visual merchandiser, I crafted tailored floor plans, and selected props, furniture, plants, and other interior elements. Additionally, my team skillfully merchandised a thoughtfully curated range of lifestyle products across different categories to elicit a powerful emotional reaction from P&G's guests.

The art directors impressed me with their detailed mood boards filled with color and texture inspiration. Leveraging the influence of color, scent, sound, and touch, we crafted unique atmospheres for each room. Our product selection included innovative brands such as Skims, Halara, Oura, Prose, Frida, Hatch, and more. From themes like Comfort, Self Care, and Good For My Body, to Set and Forget, we breathed life into each space. Our ultimate objective was to create an inviting environment that encouraged guests to share valuable insights with the research team for product development. Truly captivating!

Handling the logistics of such a significant project was a challenge I was ready for. Every item was efficiently delivered to my studio, where I organized and inventoried each product and prop before their delivery and installation. Despite my creative background, I quickly mastered managing multiple tabs on my spreadsheets and decks.

With just one day for installation and an additional half day for fine-tuning, my team of 5 worked tirelessly. Each stylist took charge of a different room, assembling furniture, arranging products, and setting the perfect mood. Our tech support team expertly managed the TVs, ensuring each room had a curated playlist for ambiance. We selected different scent machines, special lighting, and all the feels in our soft furnishings. Picture textured blankets, boucle ottomans, faux fur, and pampas grass, creating the perfect atmosphere.

The agency and I were present every day throughout the market research project, ensuring everything was in perfect order and that the setting was conducive to eliciting valuable consumer insights. The feedback received from P&G representatives highlighted that the participants were fully engaged in the environments created, enabling them to provide invaluable feedback on their preferences and usage patterns of feminine care products. Such insights have the potential to drive future innovations and shape the design of the product.

In conclusion, the success of the project hinged entirely on the active involvement of the consumers and the profound discussions the researchers conducted with every individual who visited the home. As a stylist and visual merchandiser, I found this challenge exhilarating due to its multifaceted nature - from the careful selection of products to spark conversations, to the strategic interior styling using existing items and our carefully curated props, and the flawless execution that ensured each space was both accessible and engaging.

I am thrilled by the prospect of exploring new territory in market research. Leveraging the potential of a visual and immersive environment to extract insights from a specialized group is truly ingenious. I anticipate a future filled with similar groundbreaking projects, where the realms of market research, experiential design, visual merchandising, and styling intersect.

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