Australian Newsagency Blog

A blog on issues affecting Australia's newsagents, media and small business generally.

Ignore Harry Potter products at your loss

Mark Fletcher
September 10th, 2018 · No Comments

A newsagent last week said to me people in my area don’t like Harry Potter. They said this when I asked why they had no Harry Potter product in their store. I tried it once and it failed, they said.

By trying it, they put in a small display of five different products in what I’d say is a less than ideal location in-store. They managed their own failure, I suspect to serve their opinion that Harry Potter products would not work.

The facts are that there are more than 350,000 separate Google searches in Australia each month for Harry Potter products, information, data. I have looked at he search data by location. The area where the newsagent to whom I refer is located is as interested in Harry Potter as the rest of the country. indeed, a major retailer nearby has a good Harry Potter offering in-store.

Too often I see independent retailers manage for failure by allowing personal preferences to dictate what can and can’t work for them.

The truth is, we never know for sure what will work in our shops and what will not work. The only way to find out is to have a crack, a big, bold, well-located, strongly supported crack and to promote this outside the shop as well as inside and to do all this as if we believe in the range 100%. In other words, we have to be all-in.

If we are not all-in, if we are half-assed, we manage to our expectation (hope?), we manage to failure and while this may suit our internal narrative, it fails our  business and those it feeds.

There is no point t in dabbling, trying small bets of this and that.l we are better off having less numbers of  ranges and going deeper into each range, committed and demonstrating the we serve those interested.

This is how it is with Harry Potter. Speaking from my own experience, a solid display with a broad rage of products in a good location achieves an average basket depth of four and a half items from the range. This is an excellent result. Four is above average basket depth for most gift shops, toy shops and newsagencies.

Once a Harry Potter fan or someone shopping for a Harry Potter fan sees the range and if the range is broader than they have seen elsewhere, they stock up and you benefit.

This post is NOT about Harry Potter. It is about…

  • Being open to what can work commercially regardless of personal interest or taste.
  • Wholeheartedly supporting product so they can find their success level.
  • Understanding that less can be more.
  • Data matters.
  • Headline licences being key to new traffic.

For sure, there will be stores where Harry Potter does not work, for a variety of reasons. However, the licence will work in far more than currently think it will work.

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Category: Newsagency opportunities · Opportunistic retail

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