Retail Experiences Are the New Black
I’ve spent a fortune on designer handbags, cosmetics, and shoes. The rest, I’ve just squandered! I could give up SHOPPING, but I’m not a QUITTER…and your client shouldn’t be either. Retail experiences as events are the new client cocktail party. Ever the trend setter, I pride myself of being on the cusp of this revolutionary change in event planning…retail experiences are the nuevo parties for today’s savvy marketers.
When it comes to planning a traditional client entertainment event be it a dinner, cocktail party, Front Row seat tickets to a “Strip” headliner’s performance are what usually come to mind. And although these types of events will never go out of style (much like your closet staple LBD), more and more companies are getting creative and receptive to a game changing corporate event. The new event experience I’m touting that is becoming more and more popular is events held in retail stores.
Retail Therapy 101
Although Vegas is supposedly all about “gaming,” for many visitors it’s really all about shopping. Six Louis Vuitton stores within a few blocks of each other? Only in Vegas. The malls attached to the major casinos (e.g., the Forum shops) are a huge draw but so are the outlet malls, such as the Las Vegas Premium Outlets South (with 140 stores) and North (150 stores).
With a retail event, companies request the help and assistance of Las Vegas DMC, Destination Fabulous, to rent out brick-and-mortar locations and in turn set guests up with a gift card to shop for an item of their liking that best suits their personal taste and style – shoes, sunglasses, a pair of jeans or gloves!
During the festivities, the guests are able to try on merchandise (if it doesn’t fit, you must acquit) and consult with stylists or personal shoppers on their purchases. And of course libations and butler passed hors d’ oeuvres are included to add an air of sophistication that best befits an event of this magnitude. Cocktails, Keno, cigarettes? I think not.
As far as Las Vegas event planners and the industry is concerned, we are seeing a spike in the popularity and request of such events, and can only expect that the number of bookings will continue to grow in 2016 and beyond.
So, why are retail experiences so popular?
“We’ve found that these retail experiences help us stand out with our partners, clients and customers,” according to David Becker, Senior Dell Brand Manager. “Not only do retail experiences offer an interactive atmosphere where we can engage our attendees in conversation, but they get to walk away with a tangible gift-a physical reminder of their experience with us that they can use long after the event is over.”
A cocktail party is a cocktail party is a cocktail party… a retail experience creates a lasting impression on guests after they have packed up, headed out of town , and are long gone. In each and every instance when they wear or use their new product you’ll be front of mind…mission accomplished!
Instead of planning the same old same old traditional cocktail party, change the game today and stage a retail experience that will be the talk of your next tradeshow conference or convention. After all, when the going gets TOUGH the tough go SHOPPING!
P.S. Life is short. Buy the shoes.