Best Brands : Bristol

In September 2016, Euro Shoe Group, the Belgian parent company of the brands Bristol and Shoe Discount, decided to embrace the future as one brand in the Netherlands and Belgium, namely Bristol. Euro Shoe Group researched the market and concluded that operating as one brand would have several advantages. In particular it ensures that the communication is clearer and that customers do not feel they are suffering from information overload. It also had advantages in terms of costs and efficiency, and the employees could join forces and work together for one brand.

The rebranding was accompanied by intensive communication and various campaigns, both on and offline. Euro Shoe Group set ambitious brand awareness targets and went all out to ensure that Belgians knew about the new brand. In addition, they decided to increase the number of shops from 134 to 164. This is part of Euro Shoe Group’s strategy for competing with new players like Zalando.


The rebranding did not go unnoticed by GfK’s Best Brands study, either. We included over 300 brands in a completely new category we created in 2017, Best Omnichannel Brand. We wanted to know which brand was most successful in reaching its customers via both offline and online channels – a combination that is essential in the current landscape. To decide which brand to crown as Best Omnichannel Brand, we took the following factors into consideration: Awareness, Offline & Online reach (touchpoints) and the emotional imprints left by these touchpoints. Emotional imprint takes into account today’s changing economy. People’s thinking has become less and less rational. Nowadays they want a link or connection to the brand. That is why it is very important for the brand of the future to build strong relationships with their customers - relationships nurtured by positive and memorable experiences with the brand.


By combining these three factors we were able to identify the top 10 Best Omnichannel Brands and it immediately became obvious just how effective the rebranding of Shoe Discount as Bristol was. Bristol went straight into the top 10, a really excellent achievement! Besides already high brand awareness, Bristol shops have the highest emotional imprint of all top 10 brands, which means that people like to shop at Bristol and consider it a pleasant experience. In addition, Bristol also creates good and memorable experiences online via its various social media channels, which means it scores high for online emotional imprint too. The combination of high awareness, high online and offline reach and positive emotional imprints ensured Bristol’s excellent performance. Now we will just have to wait and see whether they will be able to maintain their position in the next edition of Best Omnichannel Brand.

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