I’m not a shopaholic and neither is my wife. However, come December each year, we would venture forth to Takashimaya Shopping Centre (anchor tenant of Ngee Ann City) for our annual dose of gifting goodness. There is a certain magic in the way the Japanese retailer lays out its various spaces, tantalising consumers to part with their hard-earned cash in the most delightful way.
Every year, the Basement Two concourse area of Ngee Ann City – labelled Takashimaya Square – gets transformed into a shrine for childhood (and parenthood) consumption. With the theme “Christmas Fantasy”, this mini toy/apparel/decor fair displays all the features targeted at getting your parents/grandparents to say “yes” to their most precious kids/grandchildren/princes and princesses.
How does Takashimaya manage to stir the heartstrings and purses of its target audiences? Here’s a photo essay to explain the reasons.
Feature Top Billing Brands Prominently
Anybody who has a male primary school kid in Singapore would know how huge Beyblade currently is, putting a sensational spin on the cheap top, making them “battle weapons”, and pricing them “over the top”.
Other big names with their own “selling territories” in the fair include the eternally youthful and beautiful Barbie (51 years young)…
…the successfully reinvented Mr Men and Little Miss brands (another blast from the past)…
… the ubiquitously Wonderful World of Disney…
… plus a mix of other smaller brands like Hot Wheels and Creepy Crawlers…
Use Exhibitions and Displays to Stir Their Imaginations
To paint the possibilities of one’s toys, Takashimaya has cleverly constructed an exhibition showcase winners of a modelling competition featuring the popular Gundam robot series (hmmm… another ‘classic’ toy/anime brand). Working with huge Japanese toy brand Bandai, it managed to stir the excitement of both hardcore toy hobbyists and eager beaver boys.
Mix Your Merchandise
While headlining brands may hog the retail spotlight, it may be useful to offer some discounted merchandise (sitting in your storeroom) that may no longer sell as well. These cheaper items may draw the value conscious consumer while helping to add buzz to the buying process. Of course, don’t make it an everyday affair!
Give the Kids Something to Play While Their Parents/Guardians Shop
While it can be a awesome adventure romping around in a toy fair, kids may sooner or later grow restless while their adult caretakers fret and fuss over the prices. Here’s where activity corners offering games both video and physical could come in to absorb that hyperactive energy.
Don’t Forget to Wrap It Up
While this is one of the most basic and fundamental strategy, you will be surprised to note that not many retailers remember how busy working adults can be. Offering this service is a godsend for the festive period. Of course, it isn’t exactly environmentally friendly to wrap all your gifts, but I’ll save that debate for another time…
Don’t Forget the Festive Decor!
Finally, as in any major cultural celebration, the Christmas Fantasy at Takashimaya features a trim shop offering faux Christmas trees, baubles, reindeers, Santas, and all manner of decor items for sale. While these are usually seasonal in nature, they help to add to the overall cheer.