Old-fashioned. Outdated. Overlooked.

Founded in 1888, this heritage comfort shoe brand from Germany retails throughout Singapore, Malaysia, and Indonesia. While a loyal, mature customer base swears by Obermain’s comfort, the brand was perceived as old-fashioned, with outdated shoe styles and forgettable marketing.

It didn’t help that the Obermain retail experience was a visual assault, with too many products competing for attention and no visual merchandising guiding the experience.

Famed for its legacy of craftmanship in shoemaking, sometimes all that’s needed is a brand refresh - elevating comfort into a global heritage brand, aligning with today’s style-driven consumers.

Can comfort be sexy?

We took the first step to transformation by conducting qualitative research in all three countries. This was what we found: though people want a comfortable shoe, no one wants to step into a comfortable shoe shop. “Uninteresting”, “boring”, “conservative”, and “old-fashioned” were just some of the strong words used to describe comfort shoe brands.

Shoppers seek, instead, a shopping experience that is unique, surprising, and sexy—could this be the new Obermain?

The team reworked Obermain’s DNA as strong brand statements to align all teams on re-positioning the brand as a sexy comfort shoe with these labels in mind: Sophisticated Urban, Effortless Modernity, and Unexpected Delight were formulated to influence product development, marketing and communications, virtual and in-store experiences.

The New Promise and Identity: Comfort Without Compromise

We created a new brandmark and visual system to represent Obermain with strong, contemporary elegance, with references to heritage appearing in the brand’s origin story. With a new promise that pushes the boundaries of this category, the Obermain customer receives the comfort they love and the style, performance, and excitement they long for.

A new store layout and interiors cut down on clutter and amp-ed up browse appeal. The key objective was to create shoe collections that encouraged—not confused—decision-making, as well as an in-store experience as inviting and exciting as it was comfortable.

Stepping into new shoes

The resulting transformation was the perfect fit. The new brandmark and visual system—including in-store collateral and operational materials—were developed and implemented in all Obermain stores throughout the region.

Our campaign “Redefined Comfort” included key visuals that were shot, styled, and art-directed as critical expressions of the new brand pillars. The key visuals were central to the brand campaign featuring the first shoe collection launched post-branding.

The first retail experience opened in Bandung, Indonesia with a fashion show and red carpet reception, followed shortly by a second opening in Jakarta. The new collections and stylish interiors were launched with great success, invigorating the Obermain image as a desirable, stylish, and contemporary comfort brand anyone would be proud to own and be seen wearing.

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