Closing the gap between LaplandUK’s online and offline worlds



The Challenge

For LaplandUK, the most wonderful time of the year spans the full 365 days and all four seasons. Because half the joy lies in the anticipation, and the other half in the childlike wonder the festive season brings. 

Like many parents, Mike and Alison Battle dreamt of extending their four boys’ wonder for as long as possible, weaving tales of a distant elven world with Father Christmas at its centre. And in 2007 – having never encountered a truly immersive festive experience for families to enjoy year after year – they took it upon themselves to bring that world to life. 

Fifteen years later, LaplandUK has welcomed over one million guests and counting, with the likes of the Royal Family, Elton John and other global icons regularly in attendance and paying tribute to the mission. To further establish the magical world it has built in the minds of people globally, LaplandUK engaged Matter Of Form in 2022 to close the gap between physical and digital through a dynamic online experience, as detailed and unique as their offline one.

A Digital Delight

Different from our usual challenge, LaplandUK didn’t need us to create a website to convert, they already did that themselves. With no problem selling out in less than a day, this wasn’t so much an exercise in conversion as it was a repositioning – one that ensured LaplandUK transcended perceptions of it as a day out to encapsulate the extensive brand world, the experience of which spans months either side of the actual visit. 

Because working with an open IP is so complex, our site design needed to not only organise and convey a great deal of information in simultaneously engaging and easy-to-navigate ways, it had to translate the feeling of the experience through various interfaces. 

To do so, the site needed to get away from preconceptions of the typical winter wonderland one might visit at the local garden centre, staying above the cliché-saturated, ultra-commercial side of the festive season. 

The challenge we set Matter of Form was not an easy one; to create a website that would beautifully present us whilst landing the charm of the Elven World and the importance of our purpose to ‘Honour Childhood Together’. We could not be more thrilled with the work and it has been a pleasure working alongside the team who were meticulous throughout every stage of the project.
Matt Battle, Head of Brand, LaplandUK

UI design focused on rich tones, textures and depth to create immersion that matched the all-encompassing nature of the LaplandUK experience. What resulted was a whimsical online world premium in style, utilising playful yet graphic elements to bring the narrative to life and outline a path of magical discovery – each scroll revealing the wonder of the world Mike, Alison and the wider team have created. 

The incredibly high calibre of the experience – founded on a wealth of rich storytelling, creativity and high-quality execution by top Hollywood and West End production professionals and set designers – is expressed through cut-out imagery, removing any hard lines so the content has room to breathe.

New Opportunities

Alongside the digital transformation, our team saw opportunities in the wider end-to-end guest experience to further shift perceptions of LaplandUK from a ‘day out’ to a sprawling world of stories and memorable moments. 

Using our proprietary framework for meaningful innovation, Brand Interactions™, we assessed the entire CX map; from awareness to post-visit, through workshops with the LaplandUK team to identify potential moments of Delight, Commerce and Service (micro and macro) they can implement when it best suits their business and audience needs. 

With the site launched in November 2023, immediate upshots of our work across both digital and CX included a significant decrease in calls to customer service thanks to a newly optimised FAQ page and site infrastructure; greatly improved SEO metrics and team-wide internal buy-in to the refined brand experience.

Moving forward into new phases of digital strategies, CX innovation and world-building, the partnership between Matter Of Form and LaplandUK is far from over.