Believe the hype: how a pop-up store can fuel success

Believe the hype: how a pop-up store can fuel success

Deciding to implement a new marketing initiative can be a daunting task. Pop-up stores are no different, they are not without risk and boldness. Creativity and a strong strategy are prerequisites for temporary store success.

While pop-ups have increased in popularity and are an exciting way to create interest around a particular project or campaign, trying to establish what will represent success in the space is hard to ascertain. Statements like this don’t really help:

“The key to succeed in the retail market is to identify the strategic values of business, and thoughtfully target the use of pop-up retail to expand retail opportunities.”

Where do you start? What does it all mean? How much potential is there for your business? And how is this potential unlocked?

The term ‘pop-up shop’ refers to any space that is temporarily used for retail purposes. Pop-up stores were first seen in the 90s and were originally used to market exclusive, limited-edition products that customers were not usually able to access. The concept has since evolved and their continued success and use by retailers worldwide can only speak to their effectiveness.

The pop-up store offers retailers multiple marketing executions contained within one short-term project. While committing to a new avenue of marketing can sometimes be considered ‘high-risk’, the benefits can be exponential:

• Brand – In an increasingly digital world pop-ups allow you to extend your brand into the offline world, helping to put a face to your name and grow consumer awareness.

• Sales – Pop-ups can be geared to drive sales and perform this function extremely well. Stores can benefit from scarcity to drive demand and the sense of exclusivity.

• Buzz – Pop-ups generate buzz from the public and the media alike. The fact that they’re here today and (possibly) gone tomorrow means that there’s a short window of opportunity for people to talk about what you’re doing.

By interacting with shoppers face-to-face you encourage them to talk about it to their friends and colleagues, and spread the word via social media.

• PR – The media loves to write about them. The chances are that your competitors haven’t yet launched a pop-up so why not do it first? It’s also a good chance to network with the media.

• SEO – Buzz generates backlinks, brand mentions and social media interaction, which could see your brand climb search engine rankings for competitive search terms.

• Low overheads – Many retail outlets stand empty, causing rental rates to fall and meaning landlords are more open to short-term projects/leases.

• Stock – A pop-up store can be a great way of shifting end-of-season stock, especially if positioned as a time-limited sale with a finite amount of bargains.

• Product development – What’s the best way of determining whether or not a product will sell? How can you attract the right kind of customer feedback to help improve products? Pop-ups are a brilliant way of ‘testing the water’ and gaining invaluable feedback from your customer base.

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