Best 7 Retail Campaigns and What We Learn from Them

By Melissa Burns

The retail business is tough. Thanks to the digital age and the internet, competition for users’ attention is at an alltime high.

It’s no wonder that brands are continuously launching new campaigns. Being creative and accurate when it comes to launching new campaigns is crucial for a successful outcome.

With that in mind, we’ve curated some of the most successful retail campaigns in recent history. Learning from them may just inspire you to launch the next unforgettable one.


Burberry Acoustic

For this campaign, Burberry promotes upcoming artists on its various platforms. This campaign by outfitter Burberry is a great example of multiple marketing strategies:

  • They show that they stand for something by supporting up-and-coming artists.
  • They are leveraging user-generated content by having these artists perform wearing their clothing
  • Everything is curated and styled to perfectly fit into their brand identity and their customers’ tastes.

The artists get exposure, Burberry gets to show off their stylish outfits, and customers get free entertainment.

Applying content repurposing to user-generated content can broaden this to a cross-platform strategy.


Refinery29: 29 Rooms

Dubbed a “funhouse of style” this event hosted by Refinery29 consists of 29 rooms that are each individually branded with a unique style and experience for visitors. Rooms are designed and created by brand partners or individual artists.

It’s a colorful, exciting, and fun-filled event that perfectly captures the vibe of the online store. The positivity and energy of these events that allow visitors to let their hair down are on-point with their vision of empowering young women.


Ted Baker Presents

We’re used to fashion brands showing off their merchandise in videos. What we’re not used to is the ability to shop items directly from these videos by simply clicking on them.

Ted Baker has produced some fantastic examples, even working with high profile directors like Guy Ritchie. Their videos are extremely polished and capture the essence of the brand. It has become such a popular tool that even YouTube provides this functionality for retailers.

Shoppable videos combine the engaging characteristics of video content with an element of interactivity. It also gives a chance to show potential customers what products would look like in a desirable setting.



Social contests aren’t exactly a new idea. Instead, the challenge is to come up with new and interesting competitions that reach your audience where they hang out online. JCrew regularly gets it right.

For example, their #ACCESSORYFIX campaign challenges customers to use their JCrew accessories in creative ways to enhance their outfits. JCrew gets a huge amount of interest and user-generated content while contests get featured and may win a prize.

When done right, social competitions can be the ultimate win-win for brands and consumers.


IKEA Interactive Catalog

How can a store like IKEA allow customers to easily navigate their massive catalog online?

An interactive catalog was the answer. It really does feel like flipping through a catalog but in a way that’s more appropriate for the digital space. It allowed IKEA to showcase their newest ranges while also providing users with easier navigation.

Michael Kors has a similar campaign in its Lookbooks. These are aimed more at featuring the individual outfits, as you would expect from a fashion brand.


Nike’s Better For It

There’s a lot that could have gone wrong with this campaign. If done wrong, it could’ve been patronizing, over-sexualizing, or insensitive. However, Nike managed to hit the nail on the head.

By showing women at the start of their fitness journey and highlighting their inner hopes and insecurities. Although it’s focused on women, even guys can relate to it on some level.

It shows that Nike is a brand for everyone that aspires to be active, no matter their current level. With female empowerment hanging thick in the air, it showed a deft sense of timing too.


Red Bull Stratos

In an audacious move, Red Bull in collaboration with GoPro launched one of the most memorable marketing campaigns ever. For it, the enlisted skydiver Felix Baumgartner to break the world record for the highest skydive.

Red Bull already had a reputation as a top supporter of extreme sports, but this campaign literally took them to stratospheric heights.

In one go, they also illustrated the effectiveness of the following marketing strategies:

  • Collaborating with a relevant and complementary brand
  • Pulling off something inspiring and audacious
  • Understanding your audience and what will capture their imagination (and attention)


So, What’s the Takeaway from these Successful Retail Campaigns?

We identified these tips for future marketers from these campaigns:

  • Think outside of the box when presenting your content
  • Embrace interactivity to engage and convert potential customers
  • Your followers can be a rich source of content
  • Know your audience and be in the loop concerning current happenings
  • Physical events are still a powerful opportunity to engage


Contributed by Melissa Burns, a marketing consultant, who occasionally also provides workshops for start-ups and small businesses. Melissa writes about digital marketing and business innovation with the single goal of sharing her 6 years’ experience with other marketers.

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