The Sandton City Shopping Centre is one of, if not the, most iconic of shopping centres. Standing tall in Sandton, it is home to luxury brands from Gucci to Giorgio Armani, Ermenegildo Zegna to Louis Vuitton; and is a must-see destination if you love shopping.
In 2022, Sandton City launched its City Of Icons campaign. In it, they profiled legendary fashion staples such as the little black dress (LBD), ubiquitous denim, the sexy trench coat, the famous hoodie and the epic suit. Alongside it were shoes, sunglasses, handbags, and lipstick, all must-haves for any fashion-forward shopper. Sandton City is elevating this campaign by inviting its shoppers to re-imagine what the Future Icons will look like, sometime in the future. One that tech-nifies these essentials.
“Pioneering the evolution of retail through cutting-edge innovation is a key priority for Sandton City,” said Dimitri Kokinos, General Manager, Sandton City. “By continuously pushing the boundaries, we aim to remain ahead of the curve and to inspire our shoppers with the belief that the future is an exciting space, filled with limitless possibilities for all of us.”
Driven by a futuristic vision, tech-savvy shoppers should expect to be delighted by AI-generated iterations of these items, and possibly others crafted in the same approach. Said images are generated using a Midjourney Bot on Discord, a generative artificial intelligence (AI) programme. The campaign anticipates that visitors coming to the centre will redesign, customise and incorporate these fundamentals into their future fashion routines and closets. It is hoped shoppers will be excited to imagine future possibilities where technology and icons integrate.
These visual collaborations will live on screens dotting the Centre with the messaging amplified on Sandton City’s social media by Friends Of The Brand. This illustrious list has names such as acclaimed foodie Naqiyah Mayat, the CEO of Clark Media and one of South Africa’s most sought-after celebrities Kyle Clark, fashion and beauty content creator Zoe Msutwana and beauty and lifestyle blogger turned wellness entrepreneur Victoria Duckitt, as well as by thought leaders such as freelance tech journalist Nafisa Akabor, the mysterious Angie Detsikas, Europa Art Group’s Executive Director and Head Fashion Buyer – Melina Lambrakis, and Parfum Christian Dior’s General Manager Armine Anders.
Sandton City will produce a futuristic docuseries featuring these influencers taking shoppers on a behind-the-scenes journey to unveil how AI was leveraged. This six-part series will be showcased on Instagram giving insight into how different retailers in the centre are embracing AI technology to improve and personalise the retail offerings.
This exciting and forward-thinking campaign not only rises to the occasion but simultaneously showcases the future of retail marketing. (In)famous OpenAI model ChatGPT was leaned on as the voice of the Centre’s social media during the campaign, while an AI text-to-speech generator-enhanced voice-over recorded the videos.