What is the first thing a person thinks about when the tem “pop-up” is used? Did you feel your blood boil? Your eye twitch? The sheer mention of the term immediately brings people back to some unwanted visitors that raise their ugly heads on your computer screens, taking away precious seconds from your internet surfing time.
However, in retail and marketing, popping up isn’t such a bad idea! It’s brash, it’s in your face and it can be dangerous; it’s marketing in it’s best form.
Pop-up stores are not exactly a new phenomenon. Realistically, the idea and the concept have been around for hundreds of years. People setting up shops in bazaars and urban markets in order to sell the produce that they have grown or caught were the original megamalls and shopping centers. Modern day pop ups, though, have been around for nearly a decade, inspired by the guerilla marketing tactics of small designers who would temporarily inhabit storefronts, warehouses and alleyways because they couldn’t afford their own retail shops. Currently, they are used by businesses ranging from SME’s to Multinationals to market or launch a new line of products, create some brand awareness and/or directly target a particular market.
We have seen pop-up promotions show-up in city centers, train stations, parking lots and at college or universities. Essentially, they appear in any potentially high-traffic area with the hopes of disrupting normal routines with captivating offers, demonstrations or limited-time-only distribution.
The novelty to the consumer is an obvious draw. Not having a permanent shop front can make your product mysterious and the face-to-face interaction the consumer has with, not only the product, but also the brand representatives at the pop-up are key in building a brand identity.
So how can this help the lowly entrepreneur who is trying to get their brand out into the world? Simple. Pop-ups do just that, if done successfully. No one knows more about the brand then it’s creator, so it is a great chance to get out there and educate people about what it is you do or what it is you are selling. Do your best to make it fun and interactive and then reaps the joys of this simple marketing technique that is great for brand awareness.
Who knows? We might see some pop-ups at the Hive soon….