How-to Inspiration

The Best Pop-Up Store Collaborations

Written by Joe Caselin

In order to reach a wider audience and achieve greater success with your first or next pop-up store, consider partnering up with another brand. Check out these 4 ways to collaborate on a pop-up store! 

  • Enhancing the in-store experience

Part of making your pop-up store a success lies in your customers’ in-store experience. This comes down to the way in which such things as design, floor plan, themes, customer service and music coherently express your brand’s identity and engage your customers. In this process, there are plenty of partnership opportunities.

More and more retail stores are beginning to look less like stores and more like ‘new community centers’ or so-called ‘multi-functional lifestyle stores’. Shinola’s New York flagship is a case in point: while maintaining its identity as a high-end hipster brand, selling leather goods, watches and bikes, it also hosts an in-store ‘newsstand’ run by restaurant group The Smile, which offers customers good coffee and a range of books.

Such partnerships follow a trend in the retail industry which aims to capitalize on the advantages of physical as opposed to virtual stores. By partnering up with brands that offer beverages, snacks or other forms of leisurely consumption (such as live music), you can enhance your in-store experience, both to draw customers in and encourage them to spend more time in your store.

  • Store-within-a-store

Another growing concept in the industry is the store-within-a-store. Increasingly, larger retailers are clearing space in their stores for smaller businesses to showcase their products. Macy’s announcement to partner up with beGlammed to provide make-up services and Neiman Marcus’ partnership with Le Metier to provide manicure and blowout services are a good example. These collaborations do not only help to draw in a different customer set, but also to offer customers a differentiated experience.

Of course, such a partnership is not only beneficial for the hosting party, but equally so for the guest party. 

A similar story is told by Online Jewelry brand Genevieve Collection which, powered by Storefront, opened a pop-up store in Hong Kong’s The One. It allowed the up-and-coming brand to showcase their uniquely crafted jewelry in the offline world, to a different public.

  • Sharing a pop-up venue

Another great way to partner up is in the form of a shared, or multi-seller pop-up store.  Not too long ago this was famously done by Loui Vuitton and Supreme, whose collaboration was dubbed ‘the ultimate fashion partnership’.  The exact times and locations of the eight pop-up stores they opened in Beijing, Tokyo, Paris, Sydney, London, LA, Miami and Seoul, were only announced two hours before their respective openings. 

The reason why it was such a remarkable collaboration was because of the way in which the brands tapped into each other’s strengths. Louis Vuitton, which boast a reputation of being the biggest luxury label in the world, benefitted from associating itself with one of the hottest cult streetwear brands of our time, while Supreme was able to take advantage of LV’s vast resources and reach.

A partnership between an established brand and a start-up in the form of a pop-up can be a win-win situation. For a global brand it can be a way to reposition itself in terms of image and engage at a local level, while for a starting brand it can boost both its credibility and sales.

 

  • Co-creating a line of products

Another way for brands to work together which can culminate in a pop-up event is by launching a shared line of products. Target and architect Michael Graves engaged in a high-end partnership, creating an exclusive line of kitchen and home products. During a time when American consumers were spending less, this partnership was a way to make high-end products available to the mass public.

Co-creating products and launching them at a temporary pop-up store can be highly beneficial for both brands. It creates a ‘best-of-both-worlds’ relationship, where each business benefits from the other’s reputation, image and customer base.

 

Partner up for your next pop-up!

The power of pop-ups lies in their temporary nature, the flexibility they offer and the sense of creativity and urgency with which they are associated. Brand to brand collaborations can serve these strengths.

Whether drawing on another brand to enhance your in-store experience, setting up a store-within-a-store pop-up, sharing a multi-seller pop-up venue or launching a shared product together, pop-up collaborations can be a great way for both brands to benefit from each other in a win-win situation and present a wide range of exciting opportunities.   

 

Ready to launch a buzzy pop-up event of your own? Browse +10,000 spaces available worldwide and find the perfect one for your project!

About the author

Joe Caselin

Joe is a contributor for Storefront. He is a brand strategist with several years of experience working with fintech, blockchain, NGOs, jewellery and online retail platforms. He has developed a taste for disruptive technologies and is keen to explore the retail revolution through analysing trends and identifying exciting new opportunities for brands pioneering the Future of Retail.