Nathanel said Showfields’ approach to experiential retail stemmed from its desire to fix a problem in retail — that it’s stale and undemocratic by design.
“I think that experiential is potentially the answer,” said Nathanel. “Retail, as it is set up today, is not a consumer-centric environment. Most multi-brand environments around the world, meaning department stores, big boxes — places that carry multiple products, multiple brands — are by definition retail-centric, meaning all the decision-making process behind them, because of their business model, is what should be on the shelf given what is going to sell in the next few months.”
This retail-central decision-making process often leads to retailers offeringwhat they already know and what had long existed, Nathanel added. Rarely, he said, do big-name retailers offer products or brands that were created more recently, months or even a few years ago. This means only well-known brands and established products are sold in stores, even though consumers are already comfortable buying those products through e-commerce channels, Nathanel said.
“It’s never something which is not yet well known and so that’s kinda where it breaks for brands,” he added. “Retail, as it is today, is by definition not democratized, meaning not everybody can surface — only very, very big players — and the end result is that High Street across the world, specifically in tier 1 cities, is dull and boring.”
Hear more about what Showfields is working on by listening to Retail Leader’s full interview with Nathanel. Subscribe to Trend Talk wherever you listen to podcasts.