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Newsagency management

Taking the trade show experience to small business retailers

I am grateful to have participated in a tour of the new showroom display at ISAlbi a few days ago, getting to see hundreds of new products and find out about stories that can be told through the new ranges.

I took more than 400 photos. The next day, I filmed a one hour Zoom where those of us at the showroom walk-through spoke to what we say, commenting on items and exploring how to bring the opportunities to life in-store.

Once the Zoom video was completed I loaded it to a video platform for newsXpress members, so they could see the products in detail, hear the discussion and access the new products and collateral associated with them to drive sales.

This approach of collecting video and photo assets and packaging them in a form that retailers can access from anywhere and at any time, with appropriate security measures in place, is just one way the world is changing in the retail space, one way we, marketing groups and suppliers, are able to work together to bring new product opportunities to life for retailers.

What’s interesting about what we saw is the new product categories available for retailers as it is through these that we can find new shoppers, the lifeblood of retail. From home decor to art to garden to self care to fun to environmentally aware, the ranges are broad enough for a retailer to map out a year of buying, with designated drops, to enable the business to be regularly refreshed all from the one engagement based on what’s in the video.

Plenty of suppliers have found other ways of connecting with their customers and finding new customers. I think the extent of change in this space will challenge trade show businesses into the future.

When I was in the Albi showroom, I saw account managers hosting FaceTime visits with retailers, showing product through their phone camera.

Now, from a newsXpress perspective, it shares with newsXpress members the video we shot and then offers a shopper service for anyone interested, based on what interests retailers. This is underpinned baby budgeting, floorspace and ranging advice. These and related services play into the changes engaged retailers are leveraging. Covid kicked the changes off. Now, plenty of changes have stuck, because people have realised they work better.

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