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Marble Arch Mound: how can brand experiences avoid falling flat?

By Fayola Douglas:

It is important for what is delivered to live up to expectations.

The latest addition to London’s cultural offer has come in the form of a rather uninspiring man-made hill. Marble Arch Mound is a £2m temporary installation commissioned by Westminster Council, designed to give visitors a “unique opportunity to look out over the area”.

After its opening earlier this week, paying customers who arrived to visit the 25 metres-high attraction, constructed by Dutch firm MVDRV, were reportedly underwhelmed and managed to receive refunds from the council.

The Mound promised to offer “a new perspective” and aimed to entice shoppers back to Oxford Street, but the delivery has somewhat fallen flat. It has since been confirmed by the council that the mound is not actually quite ready and bookings are no longer being taken for visits before 2 August. The attraction is scheduled to close in January 2022.

Westminster Council has said in a statement: “The Mound is a living building by design. We’ll continue to adapt and improve London’s newest outdoor attraction and resolve any teething problems as they emerge.”

Among the criticism received, some commentators called upon the original artist’s impressions of the attraction to draw some harsh comparisons.

Campaign asked brand experience agencies how others can avoid coming up against the same problems as the Mound, with expectations not living up to the reality?

Read what our MD Will Mould had to say here