06 Apr 2017

Think social media and personalisation for next gen retail

Lana Hopkins, founder of personalised purses and accessories company Mon Purse, said a trip to a Build A Bear Workshop produced her “Come to Jesus” moment in forming her company.

As part of a next generation Lab session at World Retail Congress this morning she said that the emotional involvement of creating your own product gelled with millennial-mindset consumers. “You see it with IKEA,” she said, “because we all derive that pleasure from the table we made. It's the switch from consumer to pro-sumer.”

Mon Purse launched a boutique store in Paddington, Sydney in 2015 and online, while also agreeing a deal to be stocked at department store Myer, because Hopkins wanted to try all three channels. The latter led to deals with Bloomingdale's and Selfridges and she said that all three channels had proven equally effective.

Hopkins also stressed the importance of social media celebrity endorsements, which the company does via engaging with celebrities who she believes are relevant to the brand, so saving on advertising costs.

Sugarfina co-founder Rosie O'Neill agreed, saying that shoppers on social media had proven the company's biggest brand advocates. She also said that each channel has a halo impact on the others. “Wherever we have opened stores, the online revenue has gone up as well,” she said.

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