Shopping malls need to become brands

Tuesday 10 November 2015

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Shopping malls need to become brands

A conversation with Jasmijn Prinssen, Deputy manager of JosDeVries The Retail Company


Shopping malls need to become brands according to Jasmijn Prinssen (architect). This is the starting point of a successful positioning. The first step is to see the shopping mall as a brand. This means that the shopping center has to develop its own strategic positioning, just like any other brand. Who is your target group, what’s your function and playfield? But most of all: who do you want to be and why!

This new brand-identity is the starting point of your positioning and provides the tools to start the conversation with the customer. A successful brand knows how to communicate its brand story using all channels, all touchpoints, during the entire customer journey. This gives the shopping mall its own signature and can start creating a community around the brand. ‘An excellent example is Westside in Bern,’ says Jasmijn; ‘this is a shopping mall that tells a coherent brand story; on the website and on other digital touchpoints as well as in the mall itself. This has further implications for all strategic choices. This way of thinking determines the entire strategic approach, not only the communication.’

According to Jasmijn we need to let go of the idea that the mall is a competitor of the city center. Instead we need to focus on the unique attraction of the shopping mall itself. A successful mall needs to satisfy three different customer needs: shopping, leisure and experience.

Shopping is more than having a good mix of stores and brands. A strong brand identity means daring to make choices. Every mall needs the traffic generators, but to keep you center dynamic and exciting you can attract local heroes and pop-up. But the key to more visitors, which stay longer, is leisure and experience. Leisure makes the mall a place to stay and enjoy. For example by trying out new food concepts. But a mall can also be a place to meet of relax. Experience means creating a dynamic environment by organizing events and workshops.

Jasmijn: ‘We need to see shopping malls not only as a collection of stores without its own signature, but look for a new perspective. The shopping mall can be an exciting place to shop, eat, relax and enjoy!



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JosDeVries The Retail Company BV
Safariweg 6-11
3605 MA Maarssen, P.O. Box 1194
NL-3600 BD Maarssen
The Netherlands
tel. : +31(0)346 - 563764
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