We’ve all been guilty of impulse purchases and being taken in by bright, shiny adverts for various products – very few people are immune to the powers of effective advertising. But believe it or not, there is a fine skill involved in diverting our attention in just the right way at just the right time to help us fall into the traps of temptation. Welcome to the not-so-subtle art of Pop display services.
Point of Purchase Displays
Now, Pop does not refer to the music or art styles, although the acronym is well chosen, considering its main goal is the wow factor. POP advertising refers to ‘point of purchase’ and it’s a term coined by the marketing industry to refer to strategically placed marketing materials that are right next to the products they’re promoting. You see such displays every single day, maybe without even realising. In supermarketings, in clothing stores, in tech, travel and banking. They all want to visually lure you in, peak your interest and make sure that the product in question is right there for the taking.
The general idea is to place such displays in very deliberate locations, ideally where consumers tend to make purchasing decisions – so right by the check-outs is a common choice for these things to POP up (pardon the pun).
However, just as IKEA had the ingenious idea to guide you through their store in a natural progression that would encourage you to visualise the home you’d want to create, and then buy things accordingly, pop displays require a lot of careful calculation and study of consumer behaviour in order to use these marketing tools most effectively.
It’s not good hollering about BBQ meat discounts in the vegan section or promoting heavy metal albums side by side with Taylor Swift. These may be overly simplistic examples, but it illustrates that you can’t just rely on these displays being big and eye-catching in order to actually maximise sales.
Marketing strategies’ task is to get people into the store in the first place, be it on the highstreet or online. But once there, the purpose of Pop displays is to maximise in-person customer engagement and elicit a positive response within the shopping experience to draw people’s attention to particular products, brands or special offers.
Competing for trade
In a marketplace that’s over-saturated with options, it’s becoming harder and harder to steer consumers’ attention to a singular product that stands out from the rest. A company needs to thoroughly not only understand individual customer behaviour, but the global consumer and socio-economic trends in order to create visual queues that will actually resonate with your demographic and form a bond between their needs and your product.
No easy feat! And if you just want examples of how even the biggest brands can get this wrong, just think back to the likes of the ill-thought out 2017 Pepsi ad or the out-of-touch Samsung ad featuring a woman running alone at night with headphones in. Be it a big budget ad campaign or BOGOF poster, the right display with smart and conscientious visuals can massively boost customer experience and subsequent sales, while the wrong display can do untold damage to a brand reputation.
A stand out display
A good Pop display needs to be aesthetically appealing, unique to the brand it’s promoting, punchy and to the point. These things are seemingly obvious. But a great pop display should also be clever, forward thinking and logistically accessible. Timing is key, to ensure that your product promotion is ahead of the curve, not just shifting unsold stock, and since the displays are physical assets, their ergonomics need to be carefully considered.
Ease and speed of assembly is important, as well as how it will marry with the setting of the particular location it will be on display – not to mention that these pop displays need to be safe and not overbearing. If the brand in question is thinking of doing multiple pop displays for products in the future, it’s also not the worst idea to try and create displays that can be repurposed for future products, as well as factoring in the eco factor of being able to recycle displays that still tend to be largely plastic or cardboard.
So the next time you’re shopping, be it on a specific mission or just casual browsing and something catches your eye and you wind up taking it to the check-out, or on the contrary, one glance and you want to stay away from the product at all costs – take a minute to consider the pop display it came with and see what about it was effective (or not!). And if you’re a business owner looking for ideas on how to boost your own pop displays, this could be some very valuable feedback!