Adidas has just opened a new Flagship store in New York City*. To some this may seem shocking. At a time when everyone is screaming about the death of bricks and mortar and the rise of online shopping why would the retailer invest in more than 45,000 square feet of space in one of the most expensive places on earth? Because Adidas knows that a store is about much more than just sales, it’s about building your brand.

Think of a store as a giant, interactive outdoor billboard where you get to tell your brand story. This is the chance for consumers to not only see, touch and experience your products up close but to see your brand in action.

Adidas’s new two-story flagship store has been designed as a ‘stadium retail concept’ – the entrance to the store mimics the tunnels that athletes enter the field on, you can try on clothes in the ‘locker rooms’ and test drive them on the Turf and the Track.

Clearly this store is about so much more than just selling a pair of sneakers. Some features, like the bleachers, where you can watch live sport on TV or simply observe the people of 5th Avenue, are not directed at product experience at all.

Rather it is about re-enforcing the link between Adidas and athletes. Whether for your high school PE course or a professional game, Adidas has what you need. Aspiring athletes can put themselves in shoes, literally of their heroes.

Not everyone visiting this store will buy something that day. They may come back, they may purchase online, or they may not buy at all but they will all be exposed to and experience the Adidas brand.

We all know outdoor advertising is all about ‘location, location, location’ so where better to put your most powerful billboard than the heart of New York City?

Bricks and Mortar builds brands, so it’s time to start building a presence.