Concepts Killed At The Cash Register

I like working on retail accounts. It’s a straight up game where you always know the score. You do “X” and bing, it works. Or the other, you do “Y” and it bombs.
Retail is also a bellwether. If the economy is suffering, retail suffers. If it’s booming, people are in stores buying product. According to The Wall Street Journal, the sectors falling fortunes have forced several retailers to curtail their experimental stores.

As recently as last year, retail “concept” stores were all the rage in the teen apparel business. These shops, offering the feel and prices of boutiques, took aim at tiny slices of the youth market.
Now, many of these teen concepts are being pared as the recession prompts a harsh reappraisal of slicing the market into dozens of niches.

Hot Topic Inc., who stuck to their rock-themed concept has proven an exception to the bad news, reporting a same-store sales increase of 5.2% last quarter.



About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. Today—after working for seven agencies in five states—I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.