Thursday, June 18, 2015

Are the Artifacts Selling the Mood?

Applebee’s restaurants hang all sorts of conversation starters on the walls. Cracker Barrel restaurants position board games around for customers to play. Central to the décor at Bass Pro Shop and Scheels stores are mounted wildlife heads. The memorable “Come to China” event at Bloomingdale’s included an entire Cantonese farmhouse at the flagship Manhattan store and rare Chinese decorative items at others.
     How might you best use artifacts placed throughout your store to reinforce your business image? Help in answering that question comes from, of all places, a museum exhibition in Thessaloniki, Greece. It was there that researchers from California State University-Stanislaus studied the effects on visitors of objects in an exhibition of Byzantine heritage.
     Those effects can be assigned to three categories:
  • Physically drawing the consumer in. Objects which are visually interesting or cry out to be touched guide the consumer’s path of inquiry. 
  • Conceptually drawing the consumer in. Entering the area, the visitor has preconceptions about what will be experienced. Then when the visitor encounters each of the objects, those preconceptions stimulate the visitor to create stories which add interest, making it more likely the visitor will stay for a while, tell others about the place, and choose to return in the future. 
  • Substantiating. The right artifacts give substance to the moods the visitor is experiencing, meaning that impressions of the site are trusted more. In this process, the consumer is likely to incorporate what they’re feeling and what they believe others around them at the time are experiencing. 
     With these three in mind, select and position artifacts in your store to facilitate sales. Choose items which are consistent with other impressions you want to give the shoppers. Place appealing objects in areas of the store you want shoppers to explore. At least occasionally feature pictures of the artifacts on store signage and in ads.
     Certainly, the ways in which artifacts influence consumers are different in a museum than in a retail store. In the museum, people have come specifically to interact with the objects, while in the store, the artifacts are incidental to the purpose of the shopping trip. The effects in the store are more nuanced.
     Then again, there are some similarities in the functioning. Most museums have gift shops where replicas and images of exhibited items are sold. Involving the consumers in processing their perceptions sells not only the mood, but also the merchandise.

For your profitability: Sell Well: What Really Moves Your Shoppers

Click below for more: 
Excite Consumers with Nature
Theme Like You Care

No comments:

Post a Comment