As a Visual Merchandising specialist company it is part of our job to be proactive and one way of doing so is planning in advance all the events that will require new Visual Merchandising installations. With the aid of a critical path and of course The RedBorder Ltd: The Retail Calendar ( http://www.redborder.co.uk/ ) retailers and businesses alike are able to pin point the events that they believe that they can capitalise upon. However there are times and unforeseen circumstances when you have to react to the current climate especially if it is achieving mass media coverage.
Today I witnessed such an incident in full effect!
Before today I had never heard of Hilary Mantel, as accomplished as she is/ has been she has never been on my radar, but with a few considered disparaging remarks about the Duchess of Cambridge she has now been the topic of the day and has been featured, commented upon on every news programme and in every publications. Now this kind of publicity you simply cannot buy but I suspects Ms Mantel will be the one laughing all the way to her already bulging piggy bank!
So today I popped into my local W H Smiths and lo and behold what is the first thing that I see? Yep, of course you guessed it a Hilary Mantel book in the most prominent position, which was in a focal point and instantly eye catching.unsurprising there were only a few left on display.
I still was not intrigued enough to purchase a copy but I was intrigued at how a few unkind(ish) remarks would garner so much attention and instigate mass purchase.
I have often said Visual Merchandising is a science just not rocket science and I shall never pretend to understand the complexities of the human mind but one thing I do understand is the power of Visual Merchandising.
W H Smith demonstrated a great example of reaction Visual Merchandising, which many other retailers should look to do in this current climate.
Unfortunately for the Duchess of Cambridge it is at her expense and on this occasion, The news stations / publications, The retailers and Hilary Mantel are the beneficiaries of this story!
On the other hand retailers start planning for the birth of our future monarch. The news stations and publishers will be ready the question is will you?
So this week has been a very busy week for RedBorder, before I elaborate on the events of the week I need to give you guys the back story.
Late last year I was invited to be a speaker on the subject of Visual Merchandising at the 2013 Birmingham Spring fair international (Europe’s largest Arts and Craft fair). Never to miss a business opportunity I accepted the invitation and set about brainstorming ideas for the content of the presentation. A mental block ensued (which I put down to my excitement) so I decided to put it to one side and come back to it at a later date.
A later date arrived and still none the wiser of presentation content, but one thing that was for certain was that it had to be informative to the point that the attendees feel that they are getting value from it.
So I requested a copy of the agenda of topics that the other presenters will be covering. When I read the agenda I realised that most of the presentations concentrated on the hows! This reminded me of a James Bond film I saw (Tomorrow Never Dies) Where the character Elliot Carver says “The key to a good story is not who or what or when but WHY” and I realised that whilst all the other presentations were about how to create window displays and execute visual merchandising strategies in store my presentation will cover the Why’s and When’s of visual merchandising. The idea of The Retail Calendar was finally required and ready to be brought to fruition.
The Retail Calendar is a resource for any discerning Retailer and is created to be an essential element of the staff room notice board and anyone running a business within or affiliated to the retail sector.
Traditionally calendars are ready for sale at least from September so we are currently working on the 2014 edition to meet this deadline so keep an eye out for it!
The day of the presentation finally arrived and I must admit it was the most relaxed I have ever been for a presentation. I put this down to a lot of preparation and giving ourselves enough time to get to the venue.
It was my first time to the NEC and I was so amazed at how large the building is and just how organised the event was. There were thousands of exhibitors (too many to visit them all) but what we did see were just so awesome and inspiring. It made me realise just how much I love what I do. I genuinely felt like a child in a sweet shop with the products and props that were on display. I can’t wait to include some of them our next display installations.
Until next time, have a peek at some of the images below