Here Today, Gone Tomorrow.
But not forgotten. Pop up shops temporarily use physical space to build awareness around niche goods or to test out a new product or location. The Japanese label, COMME des GARÇONS, is the pioneer of this marketing idea and brought them to the forefront in the early 2000s. By the late 2000s, pop-ups were surfacing all over the place. The shop might last anywhere from one day to a few months. It offers a specialized shopping experience with a new or seasonal product.
There are a vast number of experiential formats where a pop-up can be found. They are found in high foot traffic locations where the intended demographic is present. In established stores like J. Crew and Nordstrom, you will find in-store displays. It allows the new brand to grow their product and establish a consumer following without the hassle of building out an entire store with costly rent. It benefits the store as well as the brand by expanding the product line and meeting consumer demand without having to purchase new inventory. Pop-ups are found in malls or shopping centers as a kiosk or in a temporary storefront. Oftentimes vacant storefronts can be ideal locations for them because the owner will want to make some money off the vacant lot and may not require a lease. Pop-ups can be found in an actual pop-up container or dome, kiosk or cart in high traffic areas. They have even extended beyond fashion to include cuisine. You can find pop-ups at the Smorgasburg in NYC – a great place to start if you can’t quite afford to rent a space yet or you want to experiment with new flavors or to see if the business has potential. Similar to the pop-ups at Smorgasburg, businesses could activate in a mobile vehicle all over the city. This ingenious advertising effort allows businesses to test out new markets without a long-term commitment and saves them money in the process.
Pop Up Store
A pop-up store generates massive awareness and buzz around a brand. The novelty of the product and scarcity drives urgency and spontaneous purchases. Consumers feel a need to grab something before it’s gone especially if it’s coming in at a lower price point than a similar product in an already established storefront. The brand benefits from trying out new products and simultaneously receives real-time feedback. The owner knows if it would be beneficial to manufacture more of the product and at the same time builds human connection and grows a brand following.
There are challenges to opening a pop-up shop. Since the shop is temporary the brand must create a lasting impression by executing the concept well. You want to make sure you are making good use of the short time that you have in the space by building a clientele or receiving the intended consumer response. To do this the brand must know which demographic they’re trying to reach and where that demographic is typically found. For example, if one is trying to reach millennials in New York City it would be best to activate in a neighborhood like Union Square or SoHo over somewhere in the Upper East Side. Finally, the design is a very important piece of the activation and should match the brand to attract the intended audience.
A pop-up, like everything we do at Roots3 Productions, brings an experience to the consumer, and despite being temporary, creates a lasting impression. Many brands today want to reach millennials and utilizing this idea is a way to give them a taste and leave them craving more. Today, during the “frontierless retail” age, most shopping transactions are completed online. Although we will continue to move in a digital direction we still need human connection and that can be offered with pop-ups. It creates the right amount of human connection needed to grow and create inspiration around a brand.