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Gibson Garage: Setting the Stage for Experiential Retail

 

The Challenge

The iconic American guitar brand Gibson had changed ownership. With a new team, truly passionate about guitars, and what they termed a 125 year old start-up, they had a grand new vision for Gibson. 

They were relocating their HQ to the heart of Nashville, into a historic building erected only a few years after Gibson was founded. Their vision included a permanent brand experience footprint in the heart of Music City. 

A partnership between Project Worldwide sister agencies G7, GPJ & Shoptology was formed to build a solution for Gibson. Together with our clients, we set out to create THE ultimate guitar experience destination for brand fans and music lovers, one that allows them to fully embrace the Gibson brand, heritage and sound, while becoming a top Nashville tourist destination.

The space had to have something for everyone: 

Music lovers who want to be inspired/educated by the brand and the artists that have been shaping the sounds of music with Gibson guitars for over 100 years. They can learn something new, be inspired to play, or just take home some of the Gibson lifestyle. 

Beginner guitar players, looking to discover their first instrument and accessories. They can engage with guitar passionates who can inspire and educate them.

Guitar aficionados who play extensively. They love talking about music, sounds, techniques and guitars. They want a hands-on experience to test drive gear and inspiration they couldn’t get anywhere else. 

Because of delays due to the pandemic, the project was finally completed early in 2021 and started hosting scheduled visits and private events in the space shortly after. The space was the perfect place for the Tennessee Titans to host a virtual draft party, and others took advantage of the space for private events as well. The doors opened in full to the public on June 9th, Les Paul’s birthday. 

Our Solution

EXPLORE. PLAY. SHOP. 

While living, working and shopping from home, how do you convince consumers to come back to a retail space? Iconic guitar brand Gibson tapped our Project network to design a unique experiential retail space that would not only draw people in, but also make them want to stay. The result? The company’s brand new 8,000 square foot interactive flagship store called Gibson Garage in the heart of Music City. 

It’s a retail theater and immersive experience which inspires visitors who are passionate about music, tracing the role that Gibson has played throughout music history and continues to play today in shaping sound through the brands iconic guitars. It’s an attraction worthy of being a top-five tourist attraction in Nashville, appealing to all visitors, from those who have never played guitar to experts and recording artists. 

The Gibson Garage provides a stimulating environment that immerses visitors in the stories of the Gibson, Epiphone, Kramer and Mesa Boogie brands and instruments. Whether you want to experience playing the latest guitars, create your custom, made-to-measure Gibson guitar, chat with a pro, experience interactive entertainment, live performances and community events, take an education workshop, or just take home some Gibson swag, this is the best place in the world to do it. 

The press love the project, too. Here are just a few articles highlighting the collaboration:

BizBash: Trend Spotted: Retail Stores Are Using Experiential Marketing Tactics to Drive Business

The Tennessean: Gibson Garage Marks the First Public Space in Nashville for the Brand

Guitar Girl: Gibson Emerges as Music Industry Leader; Iconic, Nashville-based Brand Sets the Stage for the Future; A Message From Our CEO James “JC” Curleigh