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UAL Research Online

The Body Shop and the role of design in retail branding

Kent, Anthony and Stone, Dominic (2007) The Body Shop and the role of design in retail branding. International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, 35 (7). pp. 531-543. ISSN 09590552

Type of Research: Article
Creators: Kent, Anthony and Stone, Dominic

Purpose – To demonstrate how a company's retail store design relates to its brand and is influenced by, and contributes to, its corporate values.

Design/methodology/approach – The case study briefly summarises the significance of corporate values, branding and design in the retail industry, and subsequently explores The Body Shop's application of these elements to its business. The case study is contextualised by The Body Shop's retail environment forming a particularly important communication channel for the company.

Findings – The Body Shop has in many ways been the victim of its own success. Being a unique proposition, and having effectively created its own retail category, it has appeared slow to evolve its brand identity. The strong association between the company and its campaigning founder, increasing competition and changing consumer attitudes, have been significant factors in the company's struggle to re-align and update its brand.

Research limitations/implications – The case study largely draws on secondary sources. However, it is informed by one of the authors' experience and knowledge of The Body Shop's design process, which has previously remained unpublished.

Practical implications – The problems of planning and managing store design as a communications channel are highlighted. In particular, it demonstrates the difficulties in aligning a retailer's visual identity with its brand and market.

Originality/value – The case study examines the under-researched relationship between retail branding and design, and contributes to knowledge of the problems created over time by strongly held ethical values, for both branding and design.

Official Website: http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/09590550710755912
Keywords/subjects not otherwise listed: retailing, design, ethics, brands
Publisher/Broadcaster/Company: Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Your affiliations with UAL: Colleges > London College of Fashion
Date: 2007
Digital Object Identifier: 10.1108/09590550710755912
Projects or Series: Research Outputs Review (April 2010 - April 2011)
Date Deposited: 26 Jan 2012 13:42
Last Modified: 08 Oct 2015 05:48
Item ID: 4900
URI: https://ualresearchonline.arts.ac.uk/id/eprint/4900

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