Pop-up shops as mere distractions

popdownIs pop-up retail a feasible option for established retailers? Or is it just another diversion from core values and a waste of resources?

Can a business model be so on-track that it can afford to deflect critical focus by speculating on transient throw-of-the-dice ventures? What is it they hope to achieve in adding value to the brand name?

What message is conveyed to the public by such activity and what of the subliminal impact? What is it that traders are trying to do when they offer a short-lived opportunity of a makeshift version of what once made them successful? Are they creating ominous perceptions by bestowing ill-conceived favour upon select communities, yet fooling no-one of their egotistical endeavour?

Is the created awareness beneficial or does it leave an aftertaste when the cabaret show leaves town, further ensconcing the forsaken consumer upon the local perennial competition?

Does the pop-up model equal their permanent operation in terms of delivery and impression, or is it compromised by restrictive set-up costs? Do they offer a legitimate range and shopping experience, or is the objective of offloading slow-sellers all too evident?

What about the repercussions of being likened to the guile of a modern day traveling salesperson flogging questionable product – here today, gone tomorrow, unlikely to be seen anon?

Are retailers dabbling in pop-up shops putting themselves at risk by exposing their shortcomings while highlighting opportunities for their competitor’s development?

The approach may have once worked for the online operator looking to test the turbulent water of bricks and mortar retail, or start-ups finding their niche market. Pop-ups also can work for quintessential seasonal outlets, during Christmas, for example.

Could there be a hint of desperation and a consequence of poor innovation when corporate partakes in an aging and seemingly inappropriate trend?

So what are the benefits, for they must exist? Or are retailers once again guilty of frolicking to the wants of the virtual Pied Piper?

Dave Farrell is a retailer with three decades of experience on three continents. He can be reached at alliance@vodafone.co.nz.

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