In an industry first, Reed Gift Fairs is introducing a new program at this weekend’s gift fair where retailers can learn everything about merchandising, styling, floral design, gift wrapping, social media and photography.
The Style Studio workshops will be hosted by some of Melbourne’s best educators including gift wrapping professional Vivienne Anthon (Stylie) and digital strategist and blogger Kylie Lewis (Of Kin), teaching visitors―ranging from the largest national independents to local retailers and home-based businesses―techniques and skills that can be implemented in-store as well as at home.
In a still struggling market, it is important to diversify and give retailers a reason to attend trade fairs. According to a recent market analysis report, events and exhibitions remain the main destination for retailers to find products for their stores.
Commissioned by Reed Gift Fairs and conducted by Omnify, the report says 44 per cent of retailers feel exhibitions are the most important place for their procurement needs ahead of online, agents and sales. When looking for new products 30 per cent continues to source information about new products for their businesses through exhibitions, ahead of all other channels, and more than half don’t expect this to change over the next four years.
“Whilst it’s evident and understandable that the retail industry is diversifying its procurement channels, it’s clear that the strength of face to face interactions and hands on product sourcing that exhibitions offer cannot be matched,” says Louisa Theobold, exhibition director, Reed Gift Fairs.
“Reed Gift Fairs is looking forward to working with the pace of change and addressing the needs of retailers and wholesalers alike.”
The Melbourne fair runs from 30 January to 2 February, Sydney starts on 20 February and ends 24 February.
By Marion Gerritsen