Are you interested in creating (or hosting) a pop-up but are not sure where to start?
In the wake of COVID-19 we decided to open-source our learnings on how vacant spaces can be repurposed for public good. Sidewalk Labs commissioned & co-developed this toolkit with us.
Wallplay has been facilitating pop-ups since 2013, we helped pioneer the “vacant space as pop-up venue” model and we are excited to share what we’ve learned.
For more on the retail landscape today and why we co-developed this toolkit with Sidewalk Labs, head over to Sidewalk Talk.
TRY BRICK & MORTAR
Pop-ups are a great way to enter brick and mortar without the traditional barriers of good credit, years of operating history or ample capital for rent.
TEST & LEARN
Be prepared to learn a lot from the experience of producing and executing a pop-up. Design the experience where you can collect data points and learn from those who enter your pop-up in a meaningful way.
UNDERSTAND YOUR RETURN ON INVESTMENT (ROI)
Get clear on what ROI means to you and establish what success looks like before you open your pop-up. Know what you would like to achieve. That could be creating a space to learn more about a brand new concept you are developing, simply seeing if brick and mortar is for you, or engaging with new signups or donors. Set clear goals, measure, iterate and learn.
This Toolkit Will Help You:
INVEST IN BUILDING COMMUNITY
Vacancy hurts all stakeholders, those in ownership and those who live in, work in and operate businesses in the neighborhood. By being willing to utilize your vacant space for pop-ups, you open up a new world of possibilities and can provide a valuable service to the community where you own property.
Adopting a pop-up model is a great way to support inclusivity and diversity by allowing storefront activators to enter brick and mortar without the traditional barriers that come with signing a long-term lease.
THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX
Hosting pop-ups is a great way to see what works in your space and what does not. Successful pop-up tenants often make great long-term tenants, too. Modern consumers increasingly prefer to shop experiences alongside goods and services. Successful and savvy retail operators follow their community or place themselves strategically where they believe their community can be found. In fact, spaces that have a recent track record of successful, short-term, experience-driven pop-ups often have a premium on their long-term asking rents—just as spaces with a recent and prolonged history of vacancy are susceptible to implied discounts.
TAKE RISKS TO INCREASE PROPERTY VALUE
Not all pop-ups have to be high grossing rentals to provide a tangible value. In fact, investing in ground-floor activity helps attract and retain tenants above ground. This is because physical brick and mortar stores with active programming can create what is called a “halo effect,” defined as the value created by being in the same proximity (e.g., above, next door or the same block) as the pop-up. This halo effect can contribute to a larger lease/sales pipeline, faster leasing/sales velocity and potentially higher asking rents/prices for your commercial or residential properties nearby.