Will Instagrammers all scream for Baskin-Robbins’ new ice cream concept?

Discussion
Source: instagram.com/baskinrobbins
Dec 06, 2018
Matthew Stern

Touting a selection of 31 flavors alone can’t get people to all scream for ice cream like it once could. So Baskin-Robbins is rolling out a new store concept to meet the demands of 21st century customers (and no, that doesn’t mean freeze-dried astronaut ice cream).

Last month, Baskin-Robbins revealed its new store design, which it plans to roll out nationwide in 2019, according to CNBC. In addition to the ice cream the company is known for, the store will feature chocolate-covered bananas, hand-dipped waffle cones, a smoothie bar and other premium offerings. The products are staged creatively and under glass cases. Stores are decorated with artwork from local artists, meant to encourage picture taking and social media sharing.

Baskin-Robbins’ new social-friendly store concept comes at a time when younger customers want premium Instagrammability with their ice cream. New York City-based restaurant Black Tap, for instance, has been the recipient of a huge boom in viral publicity thanks to its selection of massive, indulgent and candy-coated “CrazyShake” milkshakes.

And The Museum of Ice Cream, a pop-up “Instagram museum” put together to encourage visitors to take selfies with its wild, ice-cream themed installations, has become one of the most talked-about destinations in experiential marketing. Target has partnered with the museum to try and leverage the pop-up sensation’s cachet. The chain is selling the ice cream brand in-store and launching a line of thematically-connected children’s apparel.

This isn’t the first time that Baskin-Robbins has mixed things up to try to court contemporary customers. In 2008, the chain launched its BRight Choices line of better-for-you ice cream products to try to meet the rising tide of health-conscious customers, Media Post reports. The chain has continued to offer similar products since then.

In 2014, Baskin-Robbins began selling its products in grocery stores for the first time.

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: What will it take for Baskin-Robbins’ new concept to achieve the type of Instagrammability that will lead to incremental sales? Is this a smart strategy for building the ice cream chain’s business?

Please practice The RetailWire Golden Rule when submitting your comments.
Braintrust
"Giving customers a selfie station or cool environment to share their adventures – and your store at the same time – just makes sense. Ice cream makes it even better!"
"Design a great experience for your target customers and they will spread the word by Instagram and other means."
"I love the idea of “Instagrammability” to go along with their marketing mix. We’ve seen companies launch this year with an entire business model around Instagrammability..."

Join the Discussion!

9 Comments on "Will Instagrammers all scream for Baskin-Robbins’ new ice cream concept?"


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Gene Detroyer
BrainTrust

It sounds quite faddish to me.

Chris Petersen, PhD.
BrainTrust

It is interesting that we have reached an age where “Instagrammability” is not only a key marketing strategy, but a focus of driving incremental sales. I may be too “old” to comment on this one, but it seems to me that customer experience is at the core. Instagram posts would be the outcome of great products and customer experience. Said another way, design a great experience for your target customers and they will spread the word by Instagram and other means.

Rick Moss
Staff

While I agree that a great customer experience is a must, Chris, pandering to Instagrammers can’t hurt. Restaurants have taken to installing pinpoint lighting over their tables to give customers better conditions for their Instagram shots. And the idea of having some sort of sculpture or mammoth display in a store geared toward selfies would not in itself detract from the customer experience — in a way, it can support it.

Steve Montgomery
BrainTrust

Maybe I am too old also. The need to photo and share or it didn’t happen, amazes me. I still find it curious in this very connected world that people spend more time looking at their phone than talking with each other.

Georganne Bender
BrainTrust

Its hard to determine whether the new Baskin-Robbins stores will be Instagram-worthy based on the description. “Products staged creatively and under glass cases and artwork from local artists” doesn’t sound much different from the Baskin-Robbins near my house.

Lifecasting, sharing our lives on social media, is important to all generations these days. Giving customers a selfie station or cool environment to share their adventures – and your store at the same time – just makes sense. Ice cream makes it even better!

Patricia Vekich Waldron
BrainTrust

Ice cream and ice cream shops are “fun” destinations. Making shops and the experience more vibrant, including stages for social media, seems like a smart strategy to me!

Seth Nagle
BrainTrust

I love the idea of “Instagrammability” to go along with their marketing mix. We’ve seen companies launch this year with an entire business model around Instagrammability and I’m sure as social media continues to grow we’ll be seeing a lot more of these strategies in the years to come.

Kenneth Leung
BrainTrust

Basically an extension of the popular Ice Cream Museum concept. The issue I see is maintaining a rotation of displays to keep things “instagram fresh.” Things age quickly in Instagram time so time will tell whether BR can maintain the awareness and attractiveness.

Dan Frechtling
BrainTrust

Baskin-Robbins has been savvy about using social media before. To make this concept successful with Instagram, it can apply lessons learned from other promotions that integrate across media.
For example, BR achieved a 50 percent lift in visits last year with an in-store event it promoted on social media. Pre-event, BR ran a #freescoopnight campaign on Facebook and Instagram and stood up displays in its retail locations to build excitement. During the event it streamed consumers on Facebook Live, and through Instagram stories. Post-event, BR PR leveraged video and images for TV broadcast.

The most interesting part is this idea came from Malaysia. BR is a global business that benefits from global ideas for Instagrammability.

wpDiscuz
Braintrust
"Giving customers a selfie station or cool environment to share their adventures – and your store at the same time – just makes sense. Ice cream makes it even better!"
"Design a great experience for your target customers and they will spread the word by Instagram and other means."
"I love the idea of “Instagrammability” to go along with their marketing mix. We’ve seen companies launch this year with an entire business model around Instagrammability..."

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