Brands making the headlines

13 Oct 2015|Natalie Graham

Discount giant Poundland have announced since their confirmed takeover of the 99p Store, that they will soon be launching an online shopping service. Increasing their accessibility and therefore their audience, Poundland will see huge benefits in the move, particularly gaining the online bargain seekers and those who are driven by convenience, not to mention drawing in the shoppers who would feel less inclined to go into a discount store. Subsequently the two services will complement each other well as those that shop in-store will no doubt continue to do so, and if Byron Sharpe’s principles on how brands grow are anything to go by then Poundland are right on the mark.

Proving their success in the online shopping sector is Ocado, who have announced their recent sales rising an impressive 15 percent to £252 million as well as talks to expand internationally. Impressive, although they, and other supermarket brands, will need to keep their eye on the ball as Amazon will soon be launching Amazon Fresh in the UK, following successful trials in the States. Due to their high brand awareness and prominent position in the e-commerce space, especially with their renowned ‘Prime’ service, they will have an instant advantage. Innovation is crucial for retail chains to endure as online players as people shop more frequently across online channels.

Discount supermarket brands Lidl and Aldi have both withstood the duration for a good few years, establishing virtuous brand equity and loyalty amongst the British public through the success of their honest pricing. Aldi is aiming to reach a greater scale by expanding into the online sector, Lidl need to follow or they may find themselves stopped short.

London’s black cabs have learnt the hard way by not keeping up with the fast paced times and lack of innovation around their famed stature and ‘knowledge’. Only now have they just started to react to the global domineering UBER giant by publically protesting, offering spot discounted fares and some cabbies are overtly flashing their resentment by boldly lighting up #ubered on their iconic vehicles. Let’s hope it’s not too late for the hackney carriages.

But it’s not all doom and gloom regarding the capital’s renowned icons, The National Gallery has just been named the best museum in the UK by TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice awards, while The British Museum has tremendously been labelled one of the best tourist attractions in the world by Lonely Planet alongside iconic world phonemes, being described as “the greatest treasure house of Europe”. And we cannot go without mentioning the absolute roaring success of V&A’s Alexander McQueen Savage Beauty exhibition, the museum of art and design came up trumps by understanding that the world is constantly evolving and people no longer function on a 9 – 5 basis. People came in their herds at 2, 3, 4 in the morning to see the late fashion designer’s creations, successfully delivering on supply and demand.

While museums and exhibitions are still proving popular, they all need to think about the future of what they offer. Cultural immersive experiences are what people are looking for, to be truly involved and interacted with. Punchdrunk funded by the Arts Council, is a great example by providing people with engaging theatre performances across multiple platforms.

Simon Cowell and his new crew have been plugging our weekend night TV which can only mean one thing, Christmas is looming. Stores all over the world will be frantically trying to win the ever increasingly cluttered competitive retail market, especially the supermarket brands, who’ll be fighting to win the Christmas food shop war by doing anything and everything they can.

M&S this year is launching a new food innovation ‘Brusselsmole’ described as a “clever twist on guacamole” – take that as you will. It seems that the intricate lobster will be on everyone’s Christmas table this year. The red clawed creatures have now appeared to move into mainstream, for sale across all of the main supermarket stores, including Tesco who are wooing their budget motivated customers by offering frozen whole lobsters for £7. Ham also seems to be top of the food list and will be available at both ends of the spectrum; Waitrose is going all out by offering a whole Iberico ham leg for a whopping £399 to £500, while Lidl, are set to stick with their ‘don’t fix what ain’t broke’ strategy offering Serrano Ham Leg for around the £40 price tag.

We’ll wait to see who is crowned as the Christmas champion, in anticipation for the all singing and all dancing Christmas TVC’s to entertain us… perhaps more so than the current ratings of Xfactor.

 

Imagery source: Amazon.com; Amazon Fresh. Thinkstock; Taxi, lobster. V&A; vam.ac.uk

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