• Mirror Mirror on the Wall, Nieman Marcus Embraces Evil Stepmother Technology

    Which of those outfits is the fairest of them all? Just ask your Facebook friends.

    Today, Neiman Marcus president, Karen Katz, stepped through the looking glass when she announced a partnership with Memomi.com of Palo Alto, CA. It looks like an ordinary retail mirror, but this enchanted object enables customers to compare outfits side-by-side; see themselves from 360 degrees; and consult with friends about what to buy.

    Social shopping
    As an advisor to the company, I’m assisting the company with interaction design gestures, and helping them make the jump from killer prototype to commercial success at Neiman Marcus. I’m betting that this Enchanted Object will change the future of retail. Why? Because you are so much more likely to buy with the support of your friends. And now you can consult your fashion-savvy friends if they don’t have the time to shop with you.

    Have a look at how it works:

    A faster feedback loop for commerce
    In the Grimm Brother’s fairy tale Snow White – the magic mirror teaches us a lesson about narcissism and vanity. But the idea of a magic mirror also reveals a timeless human desire to be confident and appreciated by others. We respond to social signals, and now the link between the consumer and peers can be instantaneous as we gaze into the mirror. What will be effect on buying behavior? Given the number of mirrors at retail, what will be the impact on GDP if all stores nudge shoppers to buy 20 percent more outfits? Or the same number of outfits that cost 40 percent more? Or maybe people will reject the technology for privacy concerns?

    In any case, the answer to the perenneal question “Does my ass look good in this dress?” can be crowd-sourced.


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