Igniting the Car Camping Revolution
With van-life culture continuing to grow, the always-moving, adventurous lifestyle is gaining more and more visibility. As a group of outdoor enthusiasts looking to create a more accessible approach to exploration without the commitment of the full nomad, Luno began as a concept that would create an entire new industry: a brand dedicated entirely to car camping.
Luno looked to the STEL team to bring this concept to market, start to finish, beginning with designing and developing a backseat air mattress. The mattress became a product ecosystem, the ecosystem became a brand, and the brand is becoming a movement.
to Getting Outside
Luno came to STEL with a strong mission: make outdoor adventure more accessible, no matter the person. This powerful purpose framed our approach to this project every step of the way, starting with skews. STEL and Luno wanted to achieve optimal, sustainable balance of creating as the minimum amount of mattress models to fit in the maximum amount of vehicles. This would create an efficient manufacturing process, be cost efficient, stay environmentally conscious, and expand the potential consumer pool.
One Size Fits
To create an accessible and approachable option to camping, the Luno Air Mattress needed to do more than just fit in a car. It’s design needed to be compact, transportable, and didn’t require permanent installation. It needed to be rugged, made of high quality materials that not only screamed quality but would last a lifetime both in and out of the car. Most importantly, it needed to easily fit into anyone’s lifestyle. Be it expert adventurers, weekend warriors, or first time explorers, the outdoor and camping industry desperately needs diversity, and Luno wanted to be the first to create a step towards a more inclusive outdoor culture.
As with all of our end-to-end development projects, STEL began with extensive research to ensure we could not only meet Luno’s need, but surpass anything else on the market in quality, cost, and purpose. After gaining a comprehensive knowledge of the vehicle market and its dimensional data, our industrial design and engineering teams hit the drawing board. Collaborating on a variety of concepts that would be as universal as possible, the STEL team prioritized designs that would also remain efficiently manufacturable. After prototyping, user testing, and several iterations of each, the final model was sent to production. Luno was quickly coming to life.
More Than a Mattress
Once the air mattress’s design had been finalized and production was in motion, and more and more interest was getting drum up about the product, both Luno and STEL knew they had only scratched the surface of the brand’s capability. Since the launch of the Luno Air Mattress 1.0, the partnership has only grown stronger, and more interconnected at every step of the brand’s growth.
Both teams started cultivating more and more consumer data, using the overwhelmingly positive feedback from customers to dictate the next phase of product offering. From there, the Air Mattress 2.0 was born, accommodating even more vehicles, and even more rugged than ever before.
The Luno team wanted to keep collaborating with STEL to expand on the mattress and start building out an entire car camping ecosystem. While continuing to assess consumer input, both teams were comprised of avid explorers and outdoor enthusiasts themselves; they began designing products they needed while camping. The product offering kept growing, including fitted sheets for the mattress, window screens for comfortable sleeping, backseat organizers, and branded products like string lights and sticker packs to make car-camping set ups feel like home.
Building a Culture Around an Ecosystem
Luno’s customer base soon started shifting from consumers, to a community. People were no longer interested in simply buying the mattress and parting ways, they were buying into an experience and a lifestyle that was finally attainable. With every addition to the product ecosystem, Luno was achieving their goal of creating more accessibility to outdoor exploration, and creating a culture around it.
Translating the Outdoors,
on the Web
A brand like Luno with such a compelling mission needed an equally enticing online presence, especially as their car camping community continued to grow. More than just a e-commerce website or a social media profile, Luno online would be a base camp for adventurers of all levels to meet, learn, and build out their car camping setups. STEL and Luno designed and developed a website for optimal user journey that not only directed consumers to the Luno Air Mattress, but created an experience that users wanted to be a part of.
A Powerful Brand Pivot
At Luno’s conception, the goal of the brand was clear: enable and encourage users of all kinds to get outside. This objective has been at the core of Luno and STEL’s partnership since the beginning. As the Air Mattress quickly continued to sell and the product offering continued to expand, Luno and STEL saw an opportunity for a powerful rebrand that would shift focus from selling a product, to selling an experience.
Creating a New Kind
Through a new website, updated brand assets, and a community oriented social media strategy, Luno not only expanded their car-camper consumer base, but attracted major partners who saw potential and value in Luno’s mission. Between collaborations with other camping brands, to product placement in major outdoor retailers, to custom product partnerships with vehicle companies, Luno’s visibility has only grown, and they have no plans of stopping.