Great Yarns: The Untold Riches of a Humble Past

As part of VM-unleashed’s 10th anniversary year we take a look back at some retail milestones from the last decade and explain why each store’s message is as relevant for us today as it was then.

decade-of-analysis-great-yarns-untold-riches-of-a-humble-past

The last decade has shown us that brands need to connect very strongly on an emotional level with their customers in order to survive and flourish. New brands arrive with a fanfare of future expectations, but equally valid and valuable are the stories behind the brand evolution and … Continue reading

Loaf at your Leisure: Disruptive Relaxation

Loaf, in a purely traditional definition, is a retailer of sofas, beds and furniture. However in the context of the traditional way of doing business it is a disruptor of the highest order bringing new ideas, imagination and inspiration to the table of home retailing.

 

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To begin, Loaf is not just a clever name with its implication of relaxation in the modern media world, or its application to product names and its staff of “Loafers,” but is a summary of a state of … Continue reading

Everything’s Coming Up Roses: Cath’s Cornucopia

As part of VM-unleashed’s 10th anniversary year we take a look back at some retail milestones from the last decade and explain why each store’s message is as relevant for us today as it was then.

decade-of-analysis-cath-kidston-cornucopia-everything-coming-up-roses

Cath Kidston flagship store, Piccadilly London

“Amongst the proud pillars of Piccadilly a little floral femininity has broken through the winter weather. Cath Kidston’s first flagship is a bright beacon of colour inviting the passer-by to explore a world of nostalgic designs, a celebration of classic kitsch, a … Continue reading

Converse Relationship: Clever Footwork to Customer Loyalty

As part of VM-unleashed’s 10th anniversary year we take a look back at some retail milestones from the last decade and explain why each store’s message is as relevant for us today as it was then.

decade-of-analysis-converse-relationship-clever-footwork-to-customer-loyalty

Converse flagship store, New York City

“Converse know who they are!

The key to brand success in 2013 is the commercial and emotional maximisation of the brand personality. Converse is the best example of taking an iconic product and bringing it to life through celebration of the classics, … Continue reading

Lush for Life: Believing in the Body & Soul of Beauty

It’s not often that the atmosphere in a store is so real and tangible you can almost touch it and taste it. And whilst the assortment on offer may look good enough to eat in Lush, it is the experience which is something to die for and not a misguided mouthful of soap-suds.

 

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Complete strangers are struck instantly by the friendly welcome, the overwhelming enthusiasm of the staff, and the intensity of customer engagement where it seems every customer is the most important … Continue reading

“The Flow of Retail Passion!”

It is a very long way from the product drawing board to an exciting store full of inspiring stock and enthusiastic staff. The journey is complicated logistically, commercially, geographically and emotionally, and involves the passing of the product baton between many hands.

 

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First and foremost the outcome in terms of product proposition must be commercially complete incorporating all the processes and parameters that deliver an assortment plan that learns from past experience as well as future predictions. Logistically that plan must be delivered … Continue reading

Passion is an absolute pre-requisite for commercial retail success

Successful retail businesses are driven by passionate people,
with sales & profits the commercial outcome of a passion for product and lifestyle.

 

passion-for-retail

It would be unfair and inaccurate to say that retail businesses have been without passion as in fact some of the most famous and successful retailers ever, from the Limited Group to the Body Shop, have been built around passionate individuals. However too many other companies, founded in less demanding and competitive times, rely too much on simply selling the … Continue reading

Untold Riches of a Humble Past: The Telling of Brand Stories

In a strange turn of events and in part reaction to the fabricated fantastic world around us there has become a clamor for brands with true heritage, roots, tradition and history. In many ways the greater the brand struggle, the deeper the hardship, the more humble the history then the more credible collateral a business has to take into the future firmament.

 

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At the heart of this consumer desire is “trust.” Always an essential of any brand relationship, but now not just about … Continue reading

Pop-Up for Tea: Tasteful Treats from Wedgwood

A mere meander from the horticultural highlights of the Chelsea flower show is a marriage made in heritage heaven between Wedgwood and John Lewis.

 

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Just a few steps into the foyer of Peter Jones in Sloane Square is a land of serene ceramics and tasteful elegance, a month-long pop-up experience that turns tasteful into tasty as the setting for the Wedgwood Conservatory Cafe, a place of tranquil relaxation and quiet indulgence.

The Wedgwood world is emblazoned in powder blue, provided on this occasion … Continue reading

Sustainable Selfridges: Natural Partner for a Material World

Time never stands still for Selfridges. The dawn of every day is reason enough to energise the store with new messages, products and brands to perpetuate its reputation as one of the world’s most exciting retail experiences.

 

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When seasonality subsides for a second Selfridges fills the void with self-generated events bringing every aspect of its considerable assortment to the attention of its captive customers – amidst its Spring activities for Easter and Mother’s Day there was still ample time for a powerful collaboration … Continue reading