Target has a secret app called Studio Connect that allows for a select group of customers, personally invited by the retailer, to participate in the brand’s product development process. The platform’s interface is similar to Instagram. While brands such as Everlane have used the social media platform to host an invite-only community, Target takes this consumer-loyalty initiative in-house.
SVP of product design and development at Target Julie Guggemos explains, “Studio Connect enables our designers to interact with guests at any point while developing products, encouraging conversations and adding a level of flexibility to the formal feedback process.”
A recent study shows that consumers are more inclined to trust brands that encourage them to be a part of the R&D process, and 79% of consumers expect brands to show how much they value customer insights. Through its use of a familiar interface, Target is able to build a community with consumers outside of the purchase stage of the customer journey. For example, When Target was creating tee shirt designs for Mother’s Day, consumers were able to provide slogan ideas via the app within 24 hours of the retailer’s inquiry.
Why it’s hot: Although this isn’t a net-new tactic for a company to implement, it is a step in the right direction for Target to further understand their consumers and develop the products they want and need.