Socialization of shopping malls: how is it made and what for?

Representatives of marketing and PR department of Arricano took part in the annual conference Malls Club Ukraine & Belarus «Marketing of shopping centers: course for the purchaser», which took place on July 21, 2017. The conference participants, more than 60 experts in the management of retail real estate objects and representatives of service companies providing services and solutions for the shopping malls, have discussed the best international and Ukrainian practices, innovative and technological tools that facilitate the purchaser's involvement in the shopping malls' marketing. Natalia Dmytrenko, Arricano's Marketing Director, spoke at the conference on a number of cases that demonstrate new directions in the shopping malls' marketing, highlighting three global trends: the real estate objects' socialization; consumers segmentation by psychographic (in addition to social demographic) characteristics; marketing research of a new type, focused on researching of the purchasers' actions (what buyers do, unlike what they think, believe, say). «Customer experience is one of the main aspects which modern marketing works with», notes Natalia Dmytrenko. «The real estate objects' socialization is the strategy that makes the shopping mall a comfortable social space». The speaker brought two interesting facts from the ISCS's marketing research, which actualizes the shopping malls' need for socialization. Omnical consumers purchase 3.5 times more than mono-channel consumers. The number of shopping malls' socially active consumers that are active in public places and shopping malls have shown a 15% increase over the past 2 years. This means that «the objects' socialization is the future for successful shopping malls», noted Natalia Dmytrenko. Natalia has presented a number of international examples of tenant relation and customer relations and focused the listeners' attention on the main international trends of the shopping malls' development in Europe. So, the successful examples of commercial real estate objects' socialization included, the family psychologist's consulting, the co-working zone's presence, where negotiations can be held; a recreation area for a male audience, a series of educational events about cyber security from IT-professionals and many other projects. Such implementations, sometimes unconventional for the shopping malls, solve complex tasks for the object - strengthen the shopping mall's positioning, socialize the space, provide emotional tenants' and guests' involvement. An example of such a project, implemented by Arricano in June 2017 on the roof of Prospekt shopping mall, is Prospekt Healthy Point. «The shopping malls' socialization requires projects at the forefront of everything that is happening in the world, projects that provide new knowledge, are comfortable for the target audience and are able to form positive impressions», - summed up the speaker. The conference participants had an opportunity to choose the practices that are relevant for their shopping malls, exchange experience and listen to the speakers' reports, who were representing various companies. Nadiia Linska, an expert in retail real estate marketing, told about the shopping malls' marketing in Ukrainian realities and an effective pool of tools. The representative of UTG company Dmytro Teriokhin was focused on the differences in the purchasers' preferences in Europe and Ukraine. The two reports were devoted to digital marketing: cases on the shopping malls' web-sites specifics were demonstrated by GRAPE Ukraine company in its report «Does the shopping mall need the web-site and what kind of it? Typical errors of Ukrainian shopping malls' web-sites»; and an effective SMM for the shopping mall was represented by Mykyta Kovalenko from the Yellow Fox digital-boutique. The conference participants also took part in the innovative workshop in the facilitation format, where they have developed the «Ideal Shopping Mall» criteria from the purchasers' point of view. «This year the speakers' reports peculiarity was about the international and Ukrainian marketing cases and tools, which are available for use to form a positive customer's experience in their shopping malls», said Artem Shlapak, the Project Manager at Malls Club Ukraine & Belarus. «Today, the purchaser is in the focus of marketing programs, so the shopping malls' marketing is relevant with the use of best practices and complex solutions».