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 While a loyal, mature customer base swears by Obermain’s comfort, the brand was perceived as old-fashioned, with outdated shoe styles and forgettable marketing.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.
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.
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.
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.