Pop-Up 101: Taking
Temporary Space to
Enhance Your Brand
By Christina Norsig
Christina Norsig is the CEO/founder of PopUpInsider, the first national online exchange for temporary or pop-up retail. She has been heralded as the "Queen of Pop Ups," pioneering techniques for turning empty spaces into interactive, economically successful and buzz-generating properties for both real estate owners and brands. Her expert opinions have been quoted on CBS News, and in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Crain's New York Business, USA Today, and Inc Magazine. Ms. Norsig is the author of the soon to be released book "Pop-Up Retail, How You Can Master This Global Marketing Phenomenon," and is a frequent speaker for both national retail and real estate events. For more info, visit www.popupinsider.com or email email@example.com.
In the past few years, retailers have been spinning in circles trying to figure out the best way to market their goods. Drastic changes to the media landscape and shifts in consumer behavior have left retail executives scratching their heads on the most effective ways to build brand recognition and create personal connections with buyers - which are key building blocks for any successful retail venture.
So what is the best way to cut through the clutter, raise your profile and reach your target audience without throwing too much capital at a marketing and advertising campaign? Open a pop-up store! Pop-up retail - essentially a temporary retail store location - has helped both big box retailers and smaller e-commerce ventures test new products and new locations, forge consumer relationships and build brand identity without having to commit time and money to a long-term lease or location.
For smaller online retailers, pop-up stores can provide the personal connection to buyers that a website is unable to offer. For manufacturers who sell their products through distributors, a temporary store can help enhance brand recognition. For chain retailers attempting to enter new markets, a pop-up shop can more accurately determine if certain locations are prime for increased attention than any data points can provide. Much like any marketing or advertising approach, setting up an effective and successful pop-up store requires a well-crafted strategy. So to help navigate you through the process, here are a few important factors that retailers should consider when opening a pop-up store.
Start the Process Early: By planning several months out, you can save considerable time and money by creating a budget and identifying your objectives long before you enter into a temporary lease arrangement.
Location, Location, Location: Finding the right neighborhood or storefront is critical to ensuring the success of a pop-up shop. This includes carrying out due diligence on demographics, other retailers present in the neighborhood, visibility, foot and vehicle traffic counts and neighborhood safety. Brokers could help gather this information; and it helps to visit neighboring stores to ask their thoughts about the location.
Lease Duration: How long the pop-up store stays open depends on those business objectives and budget, which should have been created before entering into any lease discussions. The average length of most pop-up stores is about three months. Making sure that you give yourself enough time to see results - at least three to four weeks, and in some instances longer - is an important factor to consider prior to entering into lease negotiations.
Anticipating Extra Costs: Because the process is often faster compared to a traditional long-term store, simple tasks like setting up phone lines and switching on the electricity in a timely fashion might cost more money upfront. So be sure you factor these into your budget.
Physical Branding: Knowing how you want to set up your store - such as: what products and how much of them you will be displaying, lighting, decor and theme - is critical to creating an atmosphere that will make your brand shine and will leave a lasting impression on consumers long after the store is closed.
Know Your Landlord: Check to see if your prospective landlord has previously done a temporary lease arrangement. Are they readily accessible? Are they willing to work with you to improve the space? These are key questions that need to be answered during lease negotiations, and will weigh heavily in ensuring the success of your pop-up store.
Educational Experience: A pop-up store is an excellent way to educate your customers about the benefits of your products. Make sure your sales staff is educated and trained on the unique selling points and that they have a clear understanding of how you want them to articulate these points to customers.
Follow Up: It's important to keep the customers engaged and to solicit feedback once your store is closed. Retailers should provide an e-mail signup sheet for customers who visited the store and conduct follow-up outreach, either through e-mails or social media platforms. The store's performance should also be carefully analyzed to assess if business objectives were met and what the next steps should be. For instance, if you exceeded your expectations, you might want to consider extending the lease or opening a more permanent location in the space to maintain sales momentum.
Of course there is no scientific formula for making a pop-up store successful, but being on top of these issues will certainly improve your chance of creating a winning space.
Timberland PRO Pops Up as Tradeshow Exhibit
Created initially for the World Shoe Association Show at the Sands Expo Center in Las Vegas, JGA designed the Timberland PRO industrial division tradeshow exhibit highlighting their various product lines. While embodying the PRO brand positioning and business strategies aimed at the trade level, Timberland PRO targets professional working consumer segments. JGA developed a modular concept for various tradeshow configurations that also supports Timberland's sustainability stance. 83% of the booth is eco-conscious, with 60% recycled materials, 4% reused, and 19% renewable. 82% of the booth is recyclable at the end of its five-year targeted life span. The "Tornado," a vertical, circular tapering element, atop the booth contrasts the solid, geometric and rectangular aspects of the base podium and provides a 360-degree visibility element that further reinforces the family of "heroes" serviced by the PRO line. Bold Timberland PRO signature orange is found on materials ranging from reclaimed construction fencing to warehouse racking. Other exhibit materials such as mass produced construction supplies including Unistrut structural channels and fittings lend to its industrial feel. For more on Timberland PRO's exhibit, click here.
The Do's and Don'ts of Temporary Retail
In the October issue of Chain Store Age, the focus was Pop-Up Stores - or as writer Connie Robbins Gentry put it, "There is no escaping the temporary store phenomena." In the cover story, Ken Nisch commented, "Pop-up stores tend to respond to a marketing need or product launch; the primary objective is to create market awareness and build the brand. In many ways, pop-ups are 3-D marketing."
Just as this issue's guest columnist Christina Norsig's feature targets how to plan for a temporary store in her article "Pop-Up 101," Nisch agrees that there are a few guidelines to consider when creating a temporary store that include:
Ken Nisch Named DDI Influencer
JGA Chairman Ken Nisch was recently named a 2011 Retail Design Influencer. Nominated by industry peers, he has the privilege of sharing this prestigious title with the industry's top retail design visionaries. Given the honor at the DDI Forum recently held in Boston, Ken accepted the Influencer Award with the thought, "It takes a village." Ken added, "In no industry is this concept more appropriate. Our Village ranges from those who develop product, operate stores, build the shopping centers, and even to our role in crafting the brand positioning, environmental experience, and 'operationalizing' stores to appeal to both the emotional and rational beings that our customers are." Ken was previously named a Luminary by the same publication in 2010.
Ultra Diamonds Sparkles
In a feature by Marianne Wilson in the November issue of Chain Store Age, Kris Land, Chief Marketing Officer for Ultra Diamonds proclaimed, "It has exceeded our expectations, and we are very pleased." Sleek, streamlined fixturing and unexpected decor accents give the 1,900 square foot store an updated feel and modern edge. The JGA design made its debut in the Woodbury Common Premium Outlets in Central Valley New York, in a remodel of an existing Ultra Diamonds store. For more on this story, click here. Or for a great Photo Gallery of the new concept, visit Retail Customer Experience.com for their slideshow coverage - click here.
Tashi Shines in DDI
Tashi by Tata International was the recent focus of the DDI Project Gallery. Illustrating how the Indian-created concept in Mumbai combines emotion and locale with its product - all in an eco-friendly environment, the store was designed by JGA in collaboration with FRDC (Future Research Design Company) in India. To see the slideshow, click here.
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USA Today: Behind the Bargains at TJ Maxx and Marshalls
In a recent feature by retail reporter Jayne O'Donnell, Ken Nisch was quoted in the story about how the retailer maintains the edge on their competition. Nisch said, "There's a degree of wink, wink. Manufacturers need off-price in order to survive, but they can make too much and destroy the value balance between supply and demand." For more on how the brand's retail realities combine to assure a steady supply of name-brand merchandise from the current season in off-price stores, read on here.
Blogging In Brazil: Inspiracao and Varejo
As a follow up to Ken Nisch's recent speaking engagement at the POPAI Brasil Conference, retail consultant and blogger Manoel Alves Lima of FAL posted a piece about JGA-designed PawsWay in Toronto, Ontario. For details (in Portuguese) on the project being heralded as innovative from Canada to South America, click here.
Crain's Announces Dalessandro Position
A recent issue of Crain's Detroit Business announced the arrival of Patrick Dalessandro to JGA, named Director of Client Strategy from Vice President at Motorsports Experience International.
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