FROM THE EDITOR: “This Is Retail”
It’s hard to believe May is just around the corner, and yet I’m so ready for all those flowers May is suppose to bring. The rain, on the other hand, I’m over. Sure, my yard appreciates it but I can’t say my travel schedule does. Since I’m on a plane fairly often, I watch the weather forecast like a hawk. Luckily, I haven’t had any major delays but I can’t say the same for my husband, whom just last night drove to the airport for a 7pm flight, only to turn around and come home by 10pm. The weather got in his way, and as a result his flight was cancelled. It happens to the best of us, I suppose. Fingers crossed I’m not in that crowd this week, however, as I leave for Vegas on Wednesday. I’ll be heading to the COVERINGS Show, which is a tile and stone tradeshow for retailers, suppliers, designers and more. In 2013, I spoke at their show – then located in Atlanta – and am excited to repeat my presentation on maximizing store space and customer experience.
Joining me at COVERINGS will be my buddies Kizer & Bender, whom also happen to be Retail Minded Advisers. It’s so fun when our schedules overlap, because we always end up chatting retail and researching stores together. We plan to do exactly this on Thursday of this week, so be sure to follow us each on Twitter and Facebook.
I’m jumping a bit ahead here, though, because what I really want to share with you are some details on a recent experience I had last week in North Carolina. I was fortunate to be asked to deliver a presentation at the North Carolina Retail Merchants Association (NCRMA) “Retail Refresh” event, where I spoke about ten things impacting independent retailers today and how they can apply these various things to help their businesses. We discussed social commerce, in-store experiences, how inventory can keep customers in your longer, store signage and much more, but what I was personally most excited about was hearing from Matt Shay, the President of the National Retail Federation.
Shay, along with President Andy Ellen of the NCRMA, introduced the attendees of the Retail Refresh event to “This is Retail”, a campaign that brings deserved attention to the reality of retail, the job impacts it has on our communities and the people who help to make up the various retail locations across North Carolina and around the country. Specifically, the NCRMA introduced a “This is Retail” initiative that featured retailers from their state, many of which you can find here, as well as more details about.
While “This is Retail” has me excited and thrilled to see retail gain some attention as a rewarding industry to not only work within but also support, it also reinforces my belief that retail is a big, BIG deal. Too often, people dismiss retail as a job that involves just supporting people in stores. That – as you already know, however – is not the case. Retail is dynamic, interesting, challenging and innovative. And in North Carolina, retail supports one in four jobs… a pretty impressive number, if I must say so myself.
One final thought as I reflect back on last week’s NCRMA Retail Refresher event…
Retailers, please support your state retail associations. They support YOU more than you may know or understand (think taxes, legislative issues, state regulations, community initiatives, etc., etc.) And truly, unless you engage with them, you may never know all that your voice means to them.
Here’s till next time. Happy Retailing!
Nicole Leinbach Reyhle Founder | Publisher | Editor Retail Minded Magazine