Dressing the set. A less well-known aspect of The Silk Forest is retail set dressing. Many people have said while we’re working how wonderful it must be to do our job. It’s hard to explain that it’s not a doll’s house we’re working with. It’s a hard-nosed piece of marketing which can sometimes be perceived as peripheral.
We would suggest it’s as important as good signage and Point-of-Sale
If it’s skimpy, it will look like there’s not enough budget. The message to your potential customer is it was done on the cheap. They are being asked to spend several thousand pounds but they’re not worth that bit of extra effort. On the other hand if you overdress, it will look like a glossy magazine interior design statement and most people don’t live in a studio set. So you’ve lost a good part of the population.
So back to first principles: first, we believe we are helping to sell the product not the dressings. Whatever you put into the set must encourage your customer aspire to ownership. They have to be able to place themselves in the room.
There are two ways of achieving this: either dress the set to fit the demographic or dress all the sets in a neutral style. Done properly neither are a cheap option – not just a few pots and pans, cups and saucers or fancy cruet sets.
Dressing to the demographic means you don’t put the Philip Starck juicer into the Farmhouse kitchen nor hang a bunch of lavender in a Boho-Chic-gloss-glass-and-stainless-steel-loft setting.
Nor do you put it in if you are dressing in a neutral style.
But whatever you do, you need to stick with it and make sure that it stays that way. There’s no point in doing it properly if it gets changed around after you’ve gone.
…and finally, in a controlled trial, some years ago a customer compared two similar new stores, similar demographic, similar location, similar size.