The Tesla pop up (mix up) in Myer Melbourne
There seems to be a mixed message…
Last week some media sites announced the start of new collaboration between car brand Tesla and Australia’s largest retailer Myer – launching a joint initiative to sell the high-end vehicles via pop up installations in high-traffic retail outlets. Tesla is “part of the retailer’s drive to integrate new and innovative brands into Myer mechandise selections. Brand association with Tesla is part of the company’s ‘New Myer’ marketing strategy” (said Teslarati.com – “the leading source for Tesla news, rumours and reviews”).
Several articles used the same quote from Myer head of brand and marketing Mike Scott – ”We want to disrupt; we want to innovate. We need to act like a contemporary brand”*
But on Thursday 16th February, Tesla withdrew the “collaboration” connection with Myer, telling motoring.com.au that “Tesla doesn’t do partnerships, globally or locally…”. Motoring clarified that “shoppers can order a car from Myer but all transactions will occur through Tesla”#
Um, what does that mean for Myer ? (I’m confused…)
And the experience in-store doesn’t quite live up to the hype either. Within the Myer Melbourne (flagship) store, directional signage at main entrances and in the elevators announce the display up on level 6, with prominent bright-red Tesla logos. Which is a pretty good start to the visit… a pleasant “tease” on the way there, to build anticipation. But once on level 6, the display itself is… under-whelming. The pop up features just one Tesla model, with doors wide open and lights / instrumentation ablaze. When I visited last weekend… several shoppers sat inside the car, some peeked underneath and others opened the front luggage space. Two Tesla-uniformed attendants stood by, answering questions (“yes, it’s a real car…”) Apart from the vehicle and a counter for the staff to lean against… a long stretch of graphics curved around the corner and a short “design studio” wall showed some options (exterior paint, seat and headliner finishes). A large “Tesla” logo featured on the back wall. But there was no obvious literature on hand (nor USB’s, discs, Q codes, smart links…) and no video screens featuring the exciting Tesla in action. And nothing to suggest this was leading-edge technology from a leading-edge innovator.
Nothing moved, not even the staff… they seemed pretty laid-back about the whole event, especially when a “shopper” drew his own audience by saying he already had a Tesla at home and it was the just best thing… (he gushed for several minutes)
The pop up looked like a motor-show stand, not a retail installation. The vehicle on display (a left-hand drive) seemed more of a “concept car”, rather than a drive-away offering – and there wasn’t anything to suggest this model was actually for sale. The quotes by Mike Scott (Myer) had suggested that Tesla cars would be available from the Myer pop up installation – but how does that work if there’s no test drive, no desk for the hard-sell, and (apart from a static model on display) nothing to excite ?
Tesla currently has other outlets in Australia, where they obviously do sell their product – their flagship retail store has prime position in Sydney’s Martin Place, there’s a retail showroom within Melbourne’s Chadstone shopping centre – and combined sales / service centres in both Sydney and Melbourne. Motoring.com.au said “at the moment Tesla has pop-up displays in some Westfield shopping malls, and a test drive facility at NEXT Hotel in Brisbane…” “The electrical car maker…. doesn’t have traditional dealerships. Instead it has showrooms within which prospective buyers can examine the car and book in test drive (sic)”#
Maybe that what’s happening at the Myer Melbourne pop up (but it didn’t seem obvious to me…)
* source : smh.com.au – Sheets, towels and… new wheels
images : Tesla pop up in Myer Melbourne, Myer and Tesla logos
Leave your response: