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Pop up – words of wisdom


Melbourne-born Jen Webb shares her thoughts on opening a pop up shop… in Hong Kong !

Jen Webb studied in Melbourne (Graphic Design at RMIT) before working in Spain and eventually finding her way to Hong Kong… and is now making her mark there with a range of “kickass shoes for kickass women”… The BLKSHEEP EMPIRE brand has been retailing around Hong Kong for a couple of seasons now – and has used the “pop up” concept effectively to expand the business.

BLKSHEEP EMPIRE started off in a night market stall at PMQ (formerly the Police Married Quarters – now a creative hub of designers – in Soho / Central Hong Kong) before moving into a temporary shop there last May. Initially they took on a 5 month lease and had been extending their tenure in 3 month blocks… up until the end of March this year. The short-term leases have been invaluable, enabling the brand to gain more exposure and experience some “face to face” time with customers.

The lessons have been useful (and plentiful…). Hosting a pop up shop has allowed them to assess the location (“test the waters” before making a permanent commitment) but also see who their market is, gain insights from customers (“you receive feedback whether you want it or not”…) – and to raise awareness of the products. Ms. Webb says shoppers in Hong Kong are very positive and encouraging… “some customers you encounter end up being long term customers, customers end up friends”

Commenting on the hardships of starting (and running) a pop up shop… she says “be prepared to have your social life confined to the store (it’s a 24/7 commitment)… to also execute everything (yourself) – from the interior design to marketing, social media, working in the shop, explaining your product to customers and all the bits and pieces of budgeting…” It seems that keeping a pot of tea and cookies on hand (and hosting visitors on her “therapy” couch) has helped her cope with a lot of that !

Ms. Webb also made some design suggestions on executing a successful pop up shop – “you have to make a statement and make something stand out, so it draws customers in during the limited time period. It’s worthwhile to invest in furniture that doesn’t scream ‘temporary’. Of course it’s about the products, but the atmosphere is what draws people in. You have to promote it as a brand.”

I’d say that’s all great pop-up advice, from someone who’s building a successful brand via temporary locations !


source : Setting up a pop up shop in Hong Kong –





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