The Destination Re-think

Christmas TreesThe following is the second of a five-part series from my friend and colleague Perry Seelert. 2013 is a year of change and new opportunities  for Perry – it should be exciting to see these come to life.

The Destination Re-think
The destinations and destination categories each store has needs to be re-thought with a vengeance. What you think you are known for is probably a little more narrow than where you believe those destinations reside. My holiday shopping experiences got me looking at this in greater detail, and I believe the shopper is more comfortable than ever in having multiple channel-to-destination category matchups.

If there was a slight holiday hangover in our house, we had Walmart to thank, as that is where we buy analgesics today. Batteries for us are a Costco purchase. Light bulbs at Home Depot. We got our Christmas tree at Stew Leonards, which sells more trees per store than any other chain in North America. Different channels, different destination categories.

As a holiday shopper marketing side note, I went into Radio Shack during the peak holiday week, and was looking for a watch battery, a destination purchase as I knew they would have it. It is the only category I associate as a destination with the store, and it happens I may not be alone, as nobody else was in the store, which had an emptiness that was ominous. If it weren’t for prescriptions/pharmacy as a destination for drug stores, I wonder if there wouldn’t be a similar experience to Radio Shack. The office channel has paper as the #1 sku (similar to milk, sugar or bananas within a grocery store), and we are moving to a paperless/digital office environment?

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Christopher Durham is the president of My Private Brand and the co-founder of The Vertex Awards. He is a strategist, author, consultant and retailer who built brands at Delhaize-owned Food Lion, and lead strategy and brand development for Lowe’s Home Improvement. He has consulted with retailers around the world on their private brand portfolios including: Family Dollar, Petco, Staples, Office Depot, Best Buy, Metro (Canada), TLW (Taiwan) and Hola (Taiwan). Durham has published five definitive books on private brands, including his first book, Fifty2: The My Private Brand Project. In 2017, he will debut his newest book, Vanguard: Vintage Originals, a visual tour of innovation and disruption in private brand going back to the mid-1800’s. Dynamic in his presentation while down to earth and frank in his opinions, he has presented at numerous conferences, including FUSE, The Dieline Conference, Packaging that Sells, Omnishopper and PLMA’a annual trade show in Chicago. Durham lives in Charlotte, NC with his wife, Laraine, and two daughters, Olivia and Sarah.