Salone del mobile – our perspective of Milan’s design week

Salone del Mobile in Milan is now a renowned international furniture fair where the best in home design can be found. The main players in a sector worth $650 billion globally are present there. The value and importance of design are celebrated throughout the city, with about 300,000 people from over 180 countries visiting.

There are three reasons why we visited this edition of the fair:

  1. At AD-PULSE, we place design as a pillar for everything we do. Our work is not just about function but also about form to create digital spaces where target users want to be. Therefore, we seek to be exposed to the best in the world.

  2. This is one of the sectors which benefits most from 3D technologies, as these make it possible to develop visualisation, configuration, and projection solutions in real or virtual environments (augmented reality).

  3. The launch of Ciclotte’s 3D configurator and augmented reality app. This brand reinvented the design of fitness bicycles and turned them into a coveted object, as evidenced by the thousands of people who stopped, tried it, and took pictures.

What we found:

  • Sense of scarcity and exclusivity: More and more, the spaces and experiences created by the most prominent brands are exclusive experiences limited to those who sign up (or are willing to wait) to ensure a good experience for everyone. Service spaces are increasingly cared for, and aspects like olfactory marketing are not forgotten, making it possible to understand the DNA of brands, even in the frenetic pace at which everyone moves.

  • KPIs: Email marketing, followers, and other metrics were clearly being used to evaluate the performance of brands at Salone del Mobile. A clear demonstration of brands’ “phigital” strategy.

  • Automations: In some cases, the experience continued beyond the fair. Using email automation, some of the more prepared brands, after gaining our contacts, invited us (with much creativity) to follow them on social media, and now we are eager to see what comes next for them.

  • Stands: The concept of stands at Salone del Mobile has changed a lot in recent years. It used to be common for brands to simply set up a space to display their products and services. Today, brands are focused on conveying their values, for example, by showcasing the work of craftsmen. But not only that. We felt that many brands want to have a say in trends by presenting innovative products or materials, or simply by surprising everyone with a change of style, aligned with sustainability and other priorities demanded by the market.
  • Absence of immersive experiences: Despite brands being increasingly focused on creating unforgettable experiences at Salone del Mobile, many still cannot stand out or provide an immersive experience, perhaps due to a lack of access to the most advanced 3D technologies. Ciclotte launched its 3D configurator, which will be an important step in completing the purchasing journey, and its augmented reality app generated a lot of curiosity, mainly for visitors who are interested in the product and want to see how it looks like in their decor or projects.