Retail Panel: Keep Visitors Engaged & Active in More than Shopping
Retail’s changing landscape over the last 30 years was the topic of a panel at the 2018 Urban Land Institute Florida Summit recently. Peter Flint, senior director at Kimco Realty Corp., emphasized how today’s retail landscape requires developers to consider how to entertain visitors with various activities, not solely shopping. “You need to have your restaurants and your retail store supported by local people. The community has to buy in, and make that center be the place they go to for entertainment and for a doctor’s appointment. And you need to provide the experience that gets them coming back,” Flint said. Retail can be desirable to investors, the article notes, “so long as the property can produce the appropriate returns”and this is usually achieved when developers set their sights on older retail developments that need a refresh.”
Babies Bounced by Build-A-Bear Blunder, but Business Boosted?
So, your humble e-newsletter editor went up to his daughter’s room, found one of her old Build-A-Bear bears, took off its hat, put it on his head, and tipped (what was now) his hat to the motionless bear. OK, the “Pay Your Age” promotion initially brought to mind the old Adam Sandler response on Saturday Night Live’s Jeopardy parody. But the expression is, you gotta break some eggs to make an omelet. If nothing else, they got tremendous response, they offered a make-good promotion shortly thereafter (with a quick apology from the CEO) and (this cannot be overlooked) they got people out to the mall, though some behaved badly. The promotion proved that if you give people the right stimulus they will respond (Chuck E. Cheese responded by offering a pay your age day). Clearly there’s a fine line between what will bring people out by the millions and a more appropriate and manageable number, but if this were the online world, BAB just “broke” the mallâ€¦but in a good way. All those disappointed kids probably got something at the mall that day, whether a snack or a shirt or a movie or a, so if you benefitted from Build-a-Bear’s faux pas, go and give them a thank you and a hug.
Lights! Camera! Action in the Malls!
Your neighbor might have a cool home theater with kickin’ sound system in his basement, and a classic popcorn machine, but it can’t compare to the full experience you can get at your local shopping center’s cinema. That’s according to a recent article on GlobeSt.com, the commercial real estate website. Mitra Esfandiari, senior principal at Retail Design Collaborative, talked to the site about the growth of cinema and how it is impacting new development. “A unique experience in cinemas can be defined in these major ways: enhanced seating options, healthy and more artisanal food and beverage offerings, reservation-based ticketing, technology enhancement and unique architectural experiences. Data shows that by replacing standard theater chairs to more comfortable recliner seats decreases capacity by 50%, yet ultimately increases the purchase of total ticket sales. Ultimately, luxury and comfort will bring more customers with willingness to pay a premium,” Esfandiari said.