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Every week we’re highlighting the shortlisted retailers in the Internet Retailing Awards 2014. Today we focus on the Brand Award.

Brands are turning to ecommerce to diversify their sales channels in a multichannel world. The Brand Award assesses that work, and aims to recognise those who have brought a fresh new perspective to selling online and across channels.

The winner of the Brand Award will be a company that sells only its own products while operating across channels, selling both directly to consumers and indirectly through retailers. It will also be a company that brings a distinctive brand-led experience to the way it operates. For this winner, multichannel retailing will be a key driver of its rising brand status.

Internet Retailing editor-in-chief Ian Jindal said: “Soup-to-nuts selling brands create products, desire and demand for their products, and increasingly move from supplying retailers, wholesalers and licensees to direct retailing under their own brand.

“From concept store to showcase experience, via pop-up, to a vibrant multichannel immersive brand experience, today’s global, authentic and connected brands are vertical, integrated and focused.

“This award recognizes a brand that has embraced all aspects of multichannel retail, connecting in a profitable, sustained and market-setting way with their customers, distributors, retailers and international partners.”

Marcus Law, marketing manager at award sponsor SLI Systems said: “Consistent brand retailing has never been so important. The most successful multichannel retailers are those that provide a dependable and cohesive brand experience across every channel, whether it be in-store, online or on a mobile device.

“We recognise the enduring power of the brand for retailers so we are looking forward to celebrating with the winner of the Internet Retailing Brand Award on June 26.”

From the initial nominations, the judges have chosen a shortlist of four: Boden, Graze, Lego and

Before ASOS came along, Boden 
 was the proof that you didn’t need stores to build a large clothing business. Boden has continued to reach customers in the omnichannel age, ensuring that the customer experience is top notch at all touch points.

 is everywhere these days – online, on Amazon, sending out vouchers, and in magazines promoting its healthy snack boxes that consumers are finding a useful way to send love for less than a fiver and one that means the customer feels personally catered for. A gimmick? With £40m in sales and profits of £9.5m the company’s doing well with a range that includes more than 100 snacks. Customer advocacy? Just try grabbing a colleague’s Graze box in the office and see the reaction! A characterful, disruptive, digital-age business that’s become a brand.

In recent years Lego 
 has expanded into the complementary areas of direct retail through high street stores and ecommerce websites and through films and games. More, now, than simply plastic bricks, the company has become a high street and retailing force, a licensing and merchandising giant as well as fully multichannel. This year Lego: The Movie was both critically-acclaimed and commercially effective, making it a strong contender for this award. 
 was a disruptive new entrant on the market, cutting out the expensive middle steps including high street shops importers and vast warehousing. The brand developed an augmented reality app rated 4/5 by the Sunday Times which allows customers to visualise its furniture and has seen 100% year-on-year growth in the past three years.

The final winner of The Brand Award will be named at the Internet Retailing Awards 2014, to be held at One Mayfair on June 26.

A reminder too that voting is open for the overall Internet Retailing Award 2014, sponsored by Venda. This is our readers’ award, in which a winner is chosen by you from the full awards shortlist. Vote and your name will go into the draw for a free ticket to the awards party.

Join the conversation and tell us who you want to win the Internet Retailing Award by tweeting your vote to @etail with #theawards.

Get tickets for you/your team/your clients/your friends here:

We’ll be exploring the other awards categories in the weeks to come.

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