Roger Shi
As a retail analyst in China, Roger is passionate about becoming an expert in what consumers want and why, with extensive experience working with sales and marketing teams at domestic and international brands.

Recently, Ancient Egypt’s pop-up store opened under the name of the British Museum and will be open until November 1st in Shanghai, where art lovers will be able to experience replicas and products from the museum’s worldwide collection via high-technology.

Roger Shi, Mintel’s retail analyst, shared his thoughts on the phenomenon:

How’s the Retail-tainment?

The concept of pop-up stores was introduced to the Chinese market in 2006 and it officially took off in 2012. It has been used to successfully transform or, for the lack of a better word, revolutionize brand images. Before, consumers would not necessarily associate museums, which are inherently historical, with being trendy or modern.

Pop-up stores have proven to be an excellent tool in revolutionizing the public image of museums. For example, The Palace Museum opened up a pop-up store in Shanghai beginning of 2019 and it has now generated over 1 billion RMB in annual revenue.

The underlying consumer driver that makes Palace Museum’s transition successful is Retail-tainment, a term coined by Mintel that demonstrates consumers’ desire for the element of entertainment in their shopping experience. The interactivity and novelty of pop-up stores are perfect for bringing that element of entertainment to consumers.

It’s also worth noting that younger consumers are more into IPs, with over 60% of consumers aged 20 to 24 and 30% of consumers aged 30 to 39 having a favorite IP. This is why British Museum’s decision to open a pop-up store is necessary and should turn out to be very rewarding.

Will IP be the core competitiveness for cultural enterprises?

As the IP culture evolves, IP will not only be the core competitiveness for cultural enterprises, but also for companies from a variety of industries.

From consumers’ standpoint, more than 40% of consumers who have favorite IPs purchased merchandise of their favorite IPs. From brand perspectives, brands are doing cross-industry collaborations to make their brand image more fluid.

For example, Joyoung, a small home appliance marker, is collaborating with LINE Friends, a private messenger app. Together they introduced Jo-young themed kitchen appliances. Younger consumers are not cooking as often. Cute and fun brand image of Line Friends are helping Jo-young to acquire consumers from younger demographics.