Lululemon’s acquisition of Mirror checks all four boxes of what makes for great omnichannel retailing.
“Memorable, shareable, repeatable, and addictive” — these were the words former Sephora executive Mary Beth Laughton used on stage at Shoptalk 2017 to describe great omnichannel retail experiences. At the time of her speech, Calvin McDonald was the CEO of Sephora Americas, so it, therefore, should come as no surprise that McDonald would aspire to take this same mantra with him in his new capacity as CEO of Lululemon just a few years later.
To this day and as will be discussed below, no better or truer words have ever been spoken about how to separate “tech for tech’s sake” (my quotes) from innovative ideas with legs.
Acquiring Mirror is clearly the latter, and clothed in yoga pants at that.
Lululemon’s acquisition of Mirror, the home-fitness startup that streams workouts through a mirror-like device, for a reported $500 million last week, is pure omnichannel retailing gold. If Lululemon was not already the standard by which many retail brands should be judged, it definitely should occupy that place now.
As first evidenced last year, when Lululemon began opening new, more experiential store formats, replete with yoga studios, cafes, and restaurants, Lululemon has always understood that its brand is about so much more than just the products it sells on its shelves. Yoga pants, sports bras, lined workout shorts, etc. are all great products, but products are also ephemeral.
The real Product is…