Those lovely people at GDR Creative Intelligence kindly asked me to ponder how retailers could get more people to the physical store.
Driving more people to store, or driving people to store more often, in itself is intensely challenging.
With rates, rental, utilities and supplier costs rising, and banks doing little or nothing for small and medium size retailers, the high street retailer could do with some positive news.
Yet the hurdles continue. The big supermarket chains have for years wielded their influence over planning departments of local government to help secure out of town shopping complexes. Over recent years they have been moving back into town creating their local/mini/city stores. The sad irony of course is that they have often taken up empty retail space vacated by the smaller retail businesses driven out of business by the supermarkets themselves. Nice.
Then of course, we have the shift online. Why brave the cold weather when you can shop online, save petrol, save time and get stuff delivered to your door.
Plus, retailers now face the indignity of having people come to their stores to use the space as product showrooms, then get out their mobile to find better deals online.
However, I have given it a go and shared my thoughts. Drawing upon a myriad of examples to highlight what might be possible, I have even provided examples of what can be learned from those lovely supermarket people.
When I met Carmel Allen, Editor in Chief of GDR Intelligence, I took notes of our conversation on my iPad, using the mindmapping software iThoughtsHD. I like to use the tool to capture different lines of thought and themes during a meeting.
When she saw what I was doing, Carmel immediately suggested I mindmap my thoughts on getting more people to the physical store.
So I did.
It appeared in Issue 45 of the GDR Creative Intelligence Report. Here is the mindmap in pdf form for you to download if you fancy taking a look. The pdf has hyperlinks built in, so you can explore some of the examples I have shared.
As ever, thoughts appreciated