IKEA: Mansitters

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IKEA Manland

As a parent, you may have used IKEA’s handy children’s play area. You drop off the kids, and in exchange you get a buzzer to carry around. After 30 minutes, time is up and you need to collect your children.

IKEA does this to enhance your shopping experience. You get a small break to do some shopping without the kids, and they get to play in a supervised environment.

So ladies, would you like to do the same thing with your husbands and boyfriends? IKEA tested a “MÄNLAND” area where wives and girlfriends can leave their (complaining) husbands and boyfriends to “play” for 30 minutes. Everyone needs a break, right?

So… would you like to leave your significant other in the play area, or would you like to be left in the play area while your significant other does some shopping on their own?

September 26, 2011 · Posted by in marketing, misc  

Smart Way to Shop?

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While shopping at a new grocery store in South Korea, you don’t need a cart, but instead your smart phone. Homeplus Smart Virtual Store, located in a subway station in southern Seoul, is the world’s first virtual grocery store.

Homeplus says it’s making the change in response to changing consumer habits and the market’s surge in smartphone use. Shoppers in the virtual store scan barcodes on the items with the Homeplus app. There are 500 different products like milk, cheese and laundry detergent to choose from. Once your selections are made, the information is sent to the company who then delivers the items to your home later that day.

Homeplus says, so far, their virtual store has been a success, stating 650,000 people downloaded their special shopping app. Is this something you’d like to have in the United States, or do you prefer the real store experience?

August 31, 2011 · Posted by in misc  

The Buyosphere

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Amazon History

I’m really not much of a shopper. The things I purchase tend to be the essentials like groceries and gasoline, and besides that, I typically purchase things for work, like audio/video equipment, or computer related things. Much of these things come from Amazon, and one n

April 21, 2011 · Posted by in branding, marketing  

Photo courtesy of brandweek.com

Men, do you think you might take more time to examine toiletry items if you had your very own aisle—free from girly scents and feminine products? That’s what a certain manufacturer is hoping.

I recently came across an article on Time Magazine’s Web site explaining that Procter & Gamble has been testing in stores the idea of creating separate aisles for men and women. Instead of being grouped by product, these aisles are grouped by gender.

The article explains, “The idea behind this separation seems to be based on the idea that men are freaked out by women’s products, and are therefore less likely to spend time perusing items. And not having to navigate their way through scary and foreign items (pink razors! tampons! eek!) must be such a relief to men, they’re inspired to explore and discover new things. Man things.”

I’ll base my opinion on how I think this change would impact my shopping-despising significant other. He’ll hate shopping just as much, regardless of the aisle in which he can find his razors. Changing aisles would probably just further confuse his trip to the store. Still, it’s an interesting concept. What do you think?

March 25, 2011 · Posted by in marketing  

Photo courtesy of wellandgoodnyc.com

I’ll be the first to admit that I don’t particularly care for grocery shopping. I believe this stems from my lack of planning ahead — I find it difficult to buckle down and determine what the heck I’m going to make for dinner the next week and a half.

Well, according to AdAge, Kraft is testing out a little tool that will allow you to go to the store with little to no planning ahead. Imagine a kiosk with three 42-inch monitors. Step on up to the “Meal Planning Solution,” and scan in your shoppers reward card to pull up your information. Using any lists you may have stored on Kraft’s “iFood Assistant” app and your previous shopping history, this fancy machine will suggest new recipes and add the necessary ingredients to your list. Voila!

Oh, and it gets better. Let’s imagine it suggests a snack recipe to you that includes Premium brand saltines and some Planters nuts, among other things. Well, look! A “free sample” option appears on one of the screens. Everyone likes samples, obviously, so you push the button and out pops a little bag of Planters Honey Roasted Peanuts. Talk about shoving their brand at you from every angle!

Let’s say that, as I munch on my peanuts, I decide I do want to make this snack concoction. I click the “add it” button and the ingredients I’ll need are added to my list on my smartphone.

But we’re not done yet. As you’re eyeing up this tasty little recipe, a small camera takes a quick mugshot of your pretty face to determine how old you are and if you’re a dude or a lady. Creepy? I think so. However, the VP of Kraft’s retail experience claims it’s just a way for retailers to get an understanding about who is subjecting themselves to the machine.

Okay, not exactly sure what to think. I’m sure that my male roomies would much rather use this device than walk around with me and my giant notebook shopping list, but I’m not so sure I’d step on up. I look fairly closely at what I’m eating (ingredients, nutrition facts…) and would rather not have a brand telling me what to eat.

Mashable also commented on this new technology a few weeks ago. Scroll down to see a video showing what the kiosk actually looks like and how it works.

Thoughts? Please share!

March 1, 2011 · Posted by in misc