retail marketing strategy, consulting assignments, executive workshops, conferences and research services, merchandising ideas, advertising ideas, consumer behavior, shopper behavior, shopper marketing, shopper insight, retail e-commerce

Dec 23, 2010

Google Retail ?

Source: Advertising Age

Here is an interesting article which talks about Google's plans for  Boutiques.com. Will we see Google competing with fashion boutiques now ?  The technology is fascinating too.

Dec 20, 2010

Outstanding Merchandising Idea

Darrell Lea, East Gardens. Outstanding Christmas window and execution of the visual merchandising idea with height, symmetry, lighting and colour.

Dec 17, 2010

IKEA advertising idea

Source: PSFK

In a replay of previous advertising ideas in the Paris Metro, IKEA is providing commuters in Paris with an enhanced level of comfort during the pre-holiday season. Till December 21st, the Swedish brand has transformed 12 bus stops into tiny lounges centered around one of their sofas.
More pics at PSFK HERE.

IKEA Upgrades Parisian Bus Shelters For The Holidays3

Dec 16, 2010

Consumer Research: Pretty Things Make Us Buy More

Source: Science Daily

New research shows that a seemingly innocent luxury item purchase can lead to an unintended, budget-busting spending spree. The problem starts with the purchase of a new item, particularly those among designer product lines, luxury branded items, or consumer goods of high-end design. Once home, these items -- graced with what researchers call salient design elements, such as a unique pattern or interesting color scheme -- can look out of place when compared to other possessions. The most obvious solution to this aesthetic mismatch would be to return the item to the store. 

But instead of making a return, consumers who were surveyed said they would make more purchases in an effort to try to surround their designer purchase with other luxury items and restore aesthetic harmony, according to marketing professors Vanessa Patrick of the University of Houston and Henrik Hagtvedt of Boston College, whose study is forthcoming in the Journal of Marketing Research.  READ MORE HERE

Dec 15, 2010

Retailer Marketing Strategy: Walk The Line

A few months back I attended the launch for Treeet, the new online shop for books, mags, music, movies initiated and funded by Gordon and Gotch, the big Australasian magazine distributor. I have since signed up for their emails, which I have been watching with interest, especially with regard to their marketing strategy.  At the time they said they would be differentiating from other players in this crowded market by promoting their 'in-stock' position and ability to ship quickly. ie. a marketing strategy built around service.

So, it was interesting when I opened one of their latest email offerings in the mad run-up to the retail Christmas.  Let me say that I think they do a lot of things right, and have done a credible job of establishing their business in one of the most challenging retail trading environments, ever.  

First up, was their opening:

My first thought ? $30 for a stocking filler ?  In an era of price deflation, I would expect a stocking filler to be less than $20 and heading rapidly south at that.  $30 and under seems way off the pace in today's market....

However, their presentation was enough for me to look further, especially as they advertised 'In Stock Now'.

Next up, I had a look at the products they thought would appeal to me, and this really got me thinking (and not in a positive way):

Please understand, I am a content maven - I devour books, mags (when I find one that interests me), movies and music - I own in excess of 400 dvds, and about the same number of cds - some would say I have a problem...  Of course lately, with my iPad I also devour a lot more content online than I used, and at a variety of times, too.  Reading an online mag in bed is somehow rather decadent.

I thought, wow, I am not sure I would pay over $20 for a new book. I have recently joined our fabulous new local library and also buy secondhand books (the new frugality), and it is very rare I feel I want a new title badly enough that I need to shell out more than $20 (often in excess of $30) for it. My friend has a Kindle and I am thinking about downloading (and paying for) some titles on my iPad.  Think about it, why would you buy new books, if not to give to a non-Netizen ? I could get a fabulous new move dvd for way less than that up the road my local JB Hi-Fi.... and my house is choc-full of books anyway... garage sale anyone ?

The magazine - I can't remember when I last took the time to read a physical magazine from cover to cover - and now, with FlipBoard on my iPad I can create my own customised magazine.  So that, too, fell by the wayside.

Which left me with good old Johnny  Cash - believe it or not - and this IS embarrassing - I do listen to some of the songs from Walk The Line - but just the other day I was putting a playlist together for my best friend, and I downloaded some tracks from iTunes - instant and only $1.49 for the ones I wanted.  That felt good!

So when  I took another look at their offers - I thought 'Wow - imagine being in a retail business - an online one at that - where you have so much competition and where the demand dynamics and distribution channels are changing so rapidly', and that's forgetting about those retailers locked into physical distribution outlets - those things called 'stores'.  You've got to work a lot harder to get me to part with my Christmas Dollar now. That means service and personalisation.....

So, what's it going to be ?  What's your marketing strategy ? Are you going to Walk The Line ?

Rudolph's Cool Shades

Optometrist, TGV centre.  Rudolph looks quite cool in this merchandising idea, but I have to say it doesn't do a lot for the product.  This optometrist deserves some credit for an attempt at this merchandising idea, but the execution has clearly not been thought out. 

Dec 14, 2010

Simple retail design

Source: PSFK, Camper Store South Beach
I love the simplicity of this shoe store design.  Read PSFK's article for more info. and pix.

Dec 13, 2010

Retail Lighting

City Chic, East Gardens. Outstanding lighting from this mid-market retailer succeeds in creating some retail drama and theatre.  In many ways the lighting could have been even more effective if there had been some additional colour in the merchandise styles chosen for display.

merchandising idea

Optometrist, East Gardens.  I thought the merchandising idea behind this backlit display was clever.  The images were arresting, especially the liquorice allsorts.  A great example of a stand out merchandising idea in a visually cluttered yet somewhat shadowed mall environment.

Dec 9, 2010

Suggestive dance shoes

Aldo, WBJ. Suggestive imagery here, stands out - although perhaps  dwarfed by  the 40% off offer.  Advertising idea not quite effectively executed ?

cell phone shop

Vodafone, Westfield Pitt Street Mall. This cell phone shop has some interesting lessons.  Firstly, it is a clear move by Vodafone away from the white clean lines (almost synthetic) feel to a warmer, more welcoming look, with some wood finishes.  Secondly, they have used mood change lighting - difficult to see from the pic, but the centre of the Voda logo changes it's colour, as does the lighting on the back wall - a range of colours from green  to purple and of course red.  This trend is not only evident in the cell phone shop genre, but also in other stores (Nespresso springs to mind).  It poses some interesting issues when applied to the brand identity - does it detract or enhance ? Presumably the Voda logo is sufficiently recognisable for this to be enhanced, by being 'funky', and visually more interesting, and less of a corporate cell phone shop.  Finally, this  is one of the best (first ?)  uses of dramatic lighting (interior spots/ hotspots) by a cell phone shop I have seen.  Long overdue, and a great improvement on the blandness and often harsh lighting of other cell phone shops. Worth a look.

Dec 8, 2010

The Christmas Gig at Target (USA)

What a cool idea !! Target USA have teamed up with well known artists to provide some Christmas cheer. You can download 14 funky Christmas tunes here - for free too :))

Dec 7, 2010


Smiggle, Mid-City Mall.  A strong presentation, as expected from Smiggle.  A great use of LCD, and simple, bold colours with uplighting in the window for dramatic effect.  

advertising ideas

JB Hi-Fi, TGV.  Some great advertising ideas here.  I like the consistent and bold yellow colour - one of the most visible in the muted lighting conditions typical of many CBD malls.  In particular I like the advertising ideas of gift card promotion on the security bollards.  This is one of the best executions like this I have seen.  It also helps provide definition to the often busy and visually cluttered JB shopfront.  Note how the catalog boxes are well located, and are clearly picked up by customers. Retail advertising ideas worth thinking about.

Easy Poster

The Body Shop, TGV.  I like the simplicity of this easy poster.  Uncomplicated and an easy poster for retailers to erect.  A great seasonal message too.

Dec 3, 2010

Wishful Thinking

Tree of Life, East Gardens. A stunning romantic graphic.  However, I don't think it  was well supported by the window merchandise, and am  not entirely sure it fits with the brand's positioning as exotic, mainly ethnic clothing.  Most window imagery to date has been of Indian or south Asian models.

Dec 2, 2010

Heart Me

Sportsgirl, Broadway. A stunning <3 me graphic from this retailer in tune with it's target market.

Rebel WITH a cause ?

Dotti, Broadway.  I am not sure everyone in their target market will get the play on words, but a striking window despite that.

Blackberry overtakes Apple in US mobile wars

A very interesting stat with implications for Australian retailers as well. Inevitable, but happening really quickly.

Source:  Statcounter

Boston, USA and Dublin, Ireland; Wednesday 1st December, 2010:BlackBerry OS overtook Apple's iOS for the first time in the US in November in terms of mobile internet usage according to web analytics company, StatCounter. The company's research arm, StatCounter Global Stats finds that for the first time in the US BlackBerry OS at 34.3% overtook Apple's iOS which recorded 33% in November.

Google's Android is rapidly gaining and has almost tripled internet market share from 8.2% last November to 23.8% this year. Apple's iOS has fallen from 51.9% to 33% over the same period.

** read the rest of the article HERE **

Dec 1, 2010

Meeting the Market

Oxfam, Broadway. Clever marketing to the shopper's value mindset. And $30 is probably a good gifting pricepoint.

Retail Pain

Jeans West, Broadway.  Not looking good for the Christmas selling season.