Can pop-up stores for hotels become the new trend?
Pop-up stores are frequently used in retail to increase brand awareness, to boost overall sales, to test new markets and/or to sell temporarily products in a specific location.
Throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, we witnessed in Paris a new trend that was adopted by several luxury hotels, which is in-house pop-up stores.
Most of these pop-up stores first appeared during the holiday winter season and were focused around selling Christmas and festivities related products. This trend was then carried all along during the several lockdowns period and was sustained by most seasonal festivities and events.
These pop-up stores increased each hotel’s own brand awareness especially through social media, more specifically through Instagram stories. We all found ourselves running to a pop-up store after stumbling into a mesmerizing chocolaty pastry on one of our friend ‘story. A few kilograms later, we started following not only the hotel but also the chef behind these amazing and delicious treats.
Thus, pop-up stores, were not just a mean to navigate through the pandemic, but also an interesting marketing stunt, boosting brand awareness and driving future sales. In fact, who wouldn’t look forward to live the full five stars experience after getting a small glimpse of the services that one could benefit from?
This leads us to the following question; will luxury and boutique hotels consider overseas pop-up stores?
First, let us define overseas pop-up stores.
We consider an overseas pop-up store one that is settled in a country or region in which the brand is absent from.
Second, how would a hotel benefit from opening an overseas pop-up store?
Prior to the Pandemic, consumers were already thriving for experiences, the Pandemic simply accelerated this process. Indeed, when booking a hotel, consumers are focused on the experience rather than on the simple accommodation. In fact, with the rise of Airbnb and other temporary hosting services, hotels must stand out with the experience they can offer to their customers.
An overseas pop-up store for a hotel will boost its brand’s awareness and will also drive sales. Undoubtedly, recreating for instance a Parisian hotel mood in a foreign country and displaying the experience the hotel has to offer will intrigue locals and incite them to induce the experience in the hotel’s original base.
The hospitality industry being one of the hardest hit sector by the pandemic, we firmly believe that focusing on the client’s experience is not only the way to recovery but is also an interesting mean for the industry to stand out.
By Léa Obeid
Picture by ©Ritz Paris