Our Business is changing. When I look at where are core business comes from, and ultimately ends up, it is different to 5 years ago.
Are we evolving with this changing trend?I’ll come back to this.
Firstly lets talk about what is different. Mark Carney talking about the interest rates rising will have a deeper effect on our disposable income. So all the budget retailers are sitting pretty, having succeeded with their strategy of attracting a raft of new customers through some savvy buying and cheaper propositions.
At Impulse we are being asked more often to design units which fit a different criteria more suitable to the insurgent retailers such as B&M, Poundland, The Range. The main difference here is that once the P&L is run on a product potential in store, the display design has to fit the slimmer budgets and still “sweat” the space given.
This does not necessarily mean that we must offer the cheapest solution – otherwise you’d see nothing but cardboard… Longevity seems to be the focus, both in the contract lengths and life expectancy in store.
I have no sympathy for the larger Grocers who have not evolved with the market, and enjoy the good old price wars that are no starting to filter down to us, the consumer.
Looking at the other end of the spectrum, our creative briefs for luxury goods are actually being pushed to give a more opulent and premium feel. We feel the sense in this, is probably that the market is now more divided than ever.
The difficulty for Brands is how to deal with the increasing “crossover”. E.g wealthy consumers visiting Aldi to buy their Lobster at Christmas, or conversely the less wealthy buying premium designer products. This is where Brand Positioning and Display in store is key.
We are experiencing increased activity in both areas – but need to understand more on the potential for the “middle of the road” brands. This is where we think, most of the change will happen shortly.
Back to the question –Are we (Impulse) evolving with this changing trend?
I don’t think we are doing enough. We are currently researching trends in both established and emerging brands – this is proving really interesting, and has already impacted our thinking when brainstorming all briefs. As this is ongoing, watch this space, as we feedback our findings.
Current workload in the studio is ranging from Air Humidifiers Displays in Harrods, to Heated Sports Clothing, to Music Mid Floor Displays. The Factory has been enjoying overtime for the last 8 weeks, and we are up to our neck in Forecourt Displays, Acrylic Beauty units, DVD Shelving and more.
Lets hope the weather stays – as this weekend is The Impulse Summer Party – Punting then afternoon tea in Cambridge.