Heidi Klum says it best, “In fashion one day you’re in and the next you’re out”.
But Macy’s and its visionary CEO, Terry Lundgren have certainly outlived many fashion cycles. They have been “in” for a very, very long time. However, big news was just announced in June and he is out of his Macy’s CEO post and is now in the Chairman-only role. Very Big News.
The tipping point in mall shopping has officially arrived.
It is all about the social shopping experience now.
It’s not Terry’s fault as mall traffic is down by half from 35 billion yearly visits (yes, billion) to now only 17.3 billion. As of this past week, Macy’s announced they are closing 100 doors. These doors represent $1B in sales-(read more here). And it’s not only about Macy’s. Other top mall players such as Gap, Abercrombie, and Victoria’s Secret are all affected. By the way, in May, Victoria’s Secret released that they are cutting their catalogue, a fashion staple since 1977.
Things have really changed for US brick and mortar retail. Lead factor is that the consumer wants to shop less and experience more. Even if they are actually shopping, they demand it to feel like a social experience and not just a shopping event.
Transactional shopping is so out. Social Shopping is in. There is a new experience that is taking social shopping to a whole new dimension. This new experience is the “CON”- a series of festival events found nearly everywhere: Beautycon, Stylecon, KCon, Indie Beauty, and for the fellows there is even Men’s Stylcecon.
Here’s The Story:
You are the customer: You shopped at the mall forever. It was awesome. Beautiful stores. You knew your way around. Sales clerks and familiar faces. Then, your life got busier and you got an awesome smartphone. Then you got enticing emails. Awesome brands with amazing low prices and, wow, free shipping- and sometimes no tax!! How could you refuse?? Slowly and surely online shopping got way easier and somehow got way more fun than the mall.
Your phone continues to send you exciting shopping offers. Now, the store at the mall is not nearly as exciting as the one in your phone.
You are the brand: You sold to this major brick and mortar retailer forever. It was awesome. It’s a beautiful account. You talked to your buyer. Then things changed.
Or, maybe you are a successful/newbie/alternative brand that has never even sold to brick and mortar. You thought this was the next progression in distribution. Now, maybe not.
Sooooooo brands, now that brick and mortar has changed, how are you now planning on reaching your consumers?????
Does your marketing plan now include the myriad of “CON” festivals??? What are these “CONs”??
They are the latest-and highly important-brand marketing events happening now.
The lines between formal commerce and the consumer are forever blurred.
Consumers are flocking by the thousands to these local and regional shows and the numbers are staggering.
Even more interesting are the mix of sponsors.
Very interesting. Your Consumer will be there, other brands will be there, so will buyers, media, influencers, press and I will be there!- how about you? Hope so!
Christine C. Oddo is the author of The Christine Report blog and founder of Madison Luxe Group; a beauty and luxury retail sales, product development, brand curation and digital strategy agency.
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