In-Store Engagement Supersized: Bramalea City Centre Thinks Way Outside the Box

In marketing we measure things in terms of clicks, open rates, leads generated. Imagine interacting with 1,500 customers over a 12-hour period where you captured their attention for 10-minutes at a time. They’d even wait in line to take part in your experience.

Morguard, which operates the Bramalea City Centre in Brampton, ON, partnered with Toronto interactive design firm Art & Science for a unique in-mall experience called the BCC Black Friday Mystery Box and it did just that.

“We increased traffic to the mall by more than 2% on Black Friday itself, and visits over the rest of the weekend by more than 3% versus 2015,” said Chanele McFarlane, Digital Marketing Coordinator at Morguard. “We wanted to delight and amaze.”


Unique experiences are hard to come by during Black Friday Shopping, between mad dashes and deals. However,Bramalea City Centre had shoppers take part in a prizing bonanza orchestrated by the interactive designers at Art & Science.

BCC Black Friday Mystery Box itself was 6-feet wide, long and 7-feet tall, with 60-inch 3D TVs on all four sides. Shoppers with special cards, which they received in the mail, would enter a code on a tablet to get the box to react. For those who won, a smoke machine would activate and animation would indicate that they’d won. A novelty cheque representing a Bramalea City Centre gift card would pop open from Mystery Box itself.

“We had ‘Mystery Men in Black’ walk winners to customer service to receive their prize,” said McFarlane.

Over 12 hours 100 gift cards were distributed to winners; that’s one every 5-10 minutes. Morguard met Art & Science at Dx3 back in March 2016, and the Mystery Box campaign began ideation in mid September. For Kirk Clyne, Chief Creative Officer of Art & Science, that sort of rapid acceleration from ideas to delivery is what excites him about the work that they do.



“It started off more simple where it was just a black box and it would open if you won,” said Clyne. “The idea evolved from there into a true Art & Science project.”

Part of that rapid expansion included an influencer marketing component that McFarlane delivered on Morguard’s behalf.

Miniature mystery boxes were delivered to some members of the Bramalea City Centre FashioniCITY members. FashioniCITY is an application where shoppers can collect gems in return for rewards. The boxes included gift cards, swag and one of the cards which tied back to the larger Mystery Box installation on Black Friday. This is an interesting loyalty program that draws consumers back to your destination.

Influencer marketing, in conjunction with the installation, helped generate more than 900,000 social media impressions around #BCCBlackFriday. By integrating influencer marketing, in-store activations, direct mail and social media engagement, Art & Science and Morguard drove more shoppers to the Bramalea City Centre.

Want to build relationships that have such powerful effects in 2017? Click here to learn more about Dx3 2017.

About James Rubec

James Rubec is a content strategist, data geek and former journalist with a love of public relations and politics. You can find him on Twitter, @JamesRRubec.

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