Monday, 15 February 2010

Shopping on the move: a bus like no other

When Fashionista is not enjoying the luxury of travelling by car, she favours the humble bus to transport her around the Capital. Sure, its slower than London's underground, but she can while away time sitting in traffic gazing into shop windows and wishing she could jump off and buy the coveted item that she can see from a distance.

Well now, thanks to Alice Temperley's latest innovative marketing mission, being on a bus will no longer be an obstacle to on-the-spot shopping. By late February, Londoners will see an Alice Temperley bus driving through the Capital, targetting trendy London locations including - of course - Somerset House, the new home of London Fashion Week. The customised double decker bus will double as a mobile pop-up shop, showcasing the as-yet-unlaunched Alice by Temperley diffusion line.

Fashionista thinks this is a great idea. The obvious problem for any bricks and mortar store is that the brand is relying on passers by to, well, not pass by and to instead walk into the store. Success depends largely on location, and on ensuring that your store is based in the ideal place for your target consumer group. The upfront overheads can make the prospect of setting up shop a daunting one and a big risk: prime location rent; stock; staff fees; bills. The same can be true for a pop-up shop - together with the added complication that comes with lack of longevity: the difficulty in securing new customers as "word of mouth" advertising takes time to spread.

So now we get to the genius of the mobile pop-up shop. Instead of waiting for customers to come to the brand, the brand has decided to come to the customers. It is heding its bets and the new brand will literally be driven around London to targeted areas, showcased to a much broader range of consumers than would otherwise be the case with a stand alone store. And whilst the cost of customising a bus is likely to be considerable, the media attention and promotion that the Temperley house will undoubtedly receive will no doubt make such cost worthwhile.

Fashionista wonders whether it is time to top up her Oyster card in anticipation...


Unknown said...

A mobile shop - surely a concept already well known from mediaeval markets via 19th century American Medicine Show hucksters to Derek Trotter et al. and not forgetting countless late-night refreshment stands in city centres everywhere...