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If it feels at times as if pop-up shops are – somewhat paradoxically – becoming a more entrenched feature of our town and city centres, that’s probably because it’s true. A pop-up store may be defined as – in the words of Cambridge Dictionary– “a store that opens suddenly and usually exists for a short amount of time”, but in another sense, pop-up shops are very much here to stay.

So, could the opening of a pop-up shop – or several – by your own brand be a worthwhile move, or is it a practice best left to others?

That’s not a question we can definitively answer in a blog post; it’s one reason why our team here at Tribe would advise you to enquire to us directly for advice. Your initial thinking on whether it would be a wise step, however, will likely be informed by such potential benefits as those detailed below.

It could be an excellent way to help spread brand awareness

If your brand is not exactly a household name – as is naturally the case for most businesses in the UK – it could be difficult for you to achieve much visibility in your field if you were to depend solely on having an online presence. This is where the setting-up of a pop-up store could show its value for your business. It could help your brand capture attention from people in your local town or city centre who might not otherwise come into contact with your business. From there, the foundations could be put in place for longer-term customer relationships with your brand, even long after your pop-up store is a thing of the past.

It provides an engaging in-person experience for staff and customers

Yes, online shopping is extremely intuitive and convenient, which can be good for sales. But there can also be a somewhat distant relationship between the human customer and what might often feel like a slightly impersonal online shopping interface. The sensation of visiting a physical shop is, of course, very different. There’s nothing quite like interacting with a store’s staff and products in person, including being able to ask questions to the staff directly, in addition to trying on and appreciating a product from multiple angles ‘in the flesh’. Getting to be so ‘up close and in person’ with brands that intrigue them help instil a desire to purchase in the customer – provided, of course, that the brand in question has handled every aspect of the pop-up store’s execution well.

It allows you to test out a particular market

Pop-up shops are considered as an approach by brands of many different backgrounds and circumstances. You might have a well-established business online that is looking at testing out a ‘brick-and-mortar’ presence for the first time, or you may even be considering launching a temporary high-street store to occur simultaneously with the debut of your web outlet.

Whatever the situation, a pop-up store could be a relatively low-stakes solution for trying out a presence in a particular town or city, or even a different part of the world, without the commitment of a long-term lease. You will gain experience and data from this venture that could inform your subsequent marketing approaches.

It allows you to tie in your brand with a specific moment

What are the highlights of the cultural calendar in your brand’s town or city? If there are certain events that stand out – and which it would make some sense for your brand to be associated with – having a pop-up store coinciding with this could help get more of the right eyeballs on your offerings.

Would you appreciate a more in-depth conversation about how our own expertise in pop-up shops and other powerful elements of experiential marketing could help your brand grow? If so, please don’t hesitate to enquire to our leading London-based experiential agency.


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