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 September 2007

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Chief Editor
& Visualiser

Anuraag S

Swati Bhalla

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First Impressions
Swati Bhalla

JD Institute of Fashion Technology introduced the first ever course on Visual Merchandising way back in 1994.
Today, we are pleased to announce the first ever online course on Visual Merchandising is yet gain supported and encouraged by Rtn. Chandraakant Dalal, President-JD Institute of Fashion Technology.

Find more details about the course below.
Admissions ARE open...!!!

JD Institute of Fashion Technology
Online Course on Visual Merchandising, How to drape a mannequin? How to design a Window Display? How to do silent selling? Learn the only language of Retailing...
Course Description
Course Description:
This 20 week (5 month) course has been designed for those wishing to begin a career in the visual merchandising or those who hold positions as visual merchandisers in the retail industry.
Aims & Objectives
Aims & Objectives:
Upon completion of this course, students will have an understanding of the Visual Merchandising industry including: principles & elements of display, development & design of language for the purpose of product presentation, design & construction of props, and working to an industry brief.
Entry requirements
Entry requirements
Satisfactory completion of graduation or its equivalent from any recognised university, or some art/ design experience and/or a demonstrated capacity and motivation for this field. Applicants may attach a folio of their art, craft, design work or photographs of display and merchandise presentation with the application form.
Entry requirements
Call, Mail, Web Call: +91 98107 80149
Mail: [email protected]
Web: www.studioatomium.com
  Course supported by           JD
  Studio Atomium
VM Solutions VM Workshops Retail Graphics Props & Signages Display Solutions

Pick of the Month
September 2007

A chance to get noticed in the industry. A chance to show your creativity. A chance to participate and win display awards every month.
(submit your entries at [email protected])

Tip of the Month WhizBang! Training, Phone: 616-842-4237, Fax: 616-842-2977,
To sign up for your FREE Tip-Of-The-Week go to
E-mail: [email protected]

Tip #112 Pick a Charity

One of the best feelings in the world is giving to those in need. And the amazing thing is that the more you give away, the more you get in return. Many of you have probably already experienced this personally, but it's an idea that can be put to work in your business, too.


Giving money to your customers' favorite charity or non-profit group is a sure-fire way to build great relationships. Here are four tips on how to make donating to a charity work for your business and do some good in the process!

1) Find a charity that has an affinity, a good fit, for you and your customers.
If you own a tattoo parlor, the garden club is probably not the best place to give your donation. However, if you are a Garden Center, giving to the garden club might be something your customers find valuable and relevant.

2) Big organizations are good, but local ones are better.
For example, a women's clothing store might choose to support the National Breast Cancer Foundation, and that would be fantastic, but the money donated may seem a little remote. Giving to a local women's shelter where the customers could actually see the result of their giving might be even better.

3) Let your imagination go…. there are lots of ways to give.
You could have a special after-hours event (or many events for many charities) where a percentage of your sales go to the charity.

You could let your customers choose a charity for the money donated from their sale from a list of groups that you support. You could designate a different charity every month and give to twelve different charities.
You could donate time instead of money. Run a promotion where you'll donate a minute of your staff's time for every dollar spent. Then you'd pay your crew to go help build Habitat For Humanity houses, or work at the local soup kitchen.

4) Toot your own horn. Make sure the information about your charitable giving is posted in your store so your customers know that their purchases are being used for good works.

Write press releases, especially if you are doing special events to generate contribution dollars. These events are news worthy (so likely to actually be reported by the paper) and could generate tons of free publicity for you. And the more people that know about your giving, the more donations you'll get.

Here's one example of how giving to a charity can really work:
Elaine West, owner of “Any Occasion Will Do” in Virginia Beach, Virginia, is in the corporate gift basket business. One of her clients is a large hospital group which has a retirement center associated with it. She donates 10% of all the sales that originate from that hospital - its staff, fund raising groups, doctors etc. to the center.

Printed on the bottom of the enclosure card is a statement that reads “10% of the sale of this basket has been donated to the XYZ Retirement Center”.

It's a quadruple win!

  • The center gets the donations…
  • The person who gives the basket feels great about supporting a worthwhile cause with her purchase….
  • The gift recipient feels even better than he normally would about his present and the person who sent it to him…
  • Elaine gets a targeted group of customers who are highly motivated to give her ALL their gift giving business… Plus, she
    gets a tax deduction for her contribution!

Easy to execute, super low cost, super high impact marketing. Simple, but brilliant!

LIFE is a Registered Public Charitable Trust which was set up in 2000 in Chennai and is exempted under 80-G of the Income Tax Act. Since its inception 5 years ago, LIFE has been

working on various activities in Chennai, Mumbai & Bangalore–A Home for Destitute Children, Vocational Schools, Non- Formal Schools, Community Clinics, edical Camps and Relief Works.....
You can contribute too.
Visit www.lifetrustindia.org

Tip of the Month Every category is different and thus every category must have there own presentation norms. These norms depend on the customer buying behavior, type of merchandise (for kids, ladies, adults etc.), size of merchandise, price point (fashion jewelry vs. diamonds), etc. Let us discuss a few categories each month, to give you an idea of how these norms are set:

Divide the books into broad categories like; Kid's, Fiction, Classics, School Books, etc.

Let us take an example of a section 'Cooking'. Now put all these books into sub-sections: Continental, Thai, Indian, etc, etc, etc. Now to further make it easy for the customers, put the books alphabetically (refer illustration on right)

SPECIAL SECTIONS/AREAS in the Books section:

1. The Store Recommends
2. Top Sellers
3. Classics
4. New Arrivals
5. Old is Gold
6. Harry Potter Series
The above areas are just some ideas. There is a lot of interest we can add to books. These sections need to be developed. We need not give them wall space, just a small stand.

Window Display Case Study


1 A very neat display by a street hawker. Not many categories but quite good range of Masks and decoration items. Masks are kept together, then stickers and then the decorative material. Notice the evenly space left for himself. Many upmarket stores these days, have failed to maintain such neatness in display. I remember visiting a store last week, in Khan market, and the crockery/mugs section was at entrance of the store and more in the other corner of the store. It was difficult to choose the merchandise between the two extreme corners. This snap is taken in Vizag. Check-out the signage of the café! The café’s name is ‘Fresh ‘n Ground’, but notice the red Café Coffee Day glow sign on left top corner. The shop is actually popular as Café Coffee Day. Ask an auto-rikshaw guy and he’ll bring you here. Although, there are couple of original Café Coffee Day’s in the city. This café offers a variety of Tea’s, Coffee’s & light refreshments. While talking to the guy, we came to know that he managed to grab the Glow sign from some trash!

By Anuraag S
Window Display Case Study


1 The depth of the window is quite good.

2 The lights are evenly spread across the window.

3 The props used are:
a. Abstract greenish backdrop
(hanging from ceiling; approx. 6” away for the back wall)
b. 2 wooden podiums
c. Plant
d. 3 frosted acrylic boxes; hanging from the ceiling sizes:
Box 1: 2’x2’ (showcasing a game/toy)
Box 2: 1.5’ x 1.5’ (showcasing book)
Box 3: 1’ x 1’ (showcasing a single casual shoe)

4 The mannequins are draped in casual wear, very well layered and grouped.

5 Window can be clearly seen in 3 parts.
Refer theyellow doted lines.

Any Questions?

If you have any display or store planning/layout related questions, send it to us!
Mr. Surender Gnanaolivu, Concept Head - Lifestyle Dept. Store, Reliance Retail, will answer your questions... (Mr. Surender Gnanaolivu has a rich experience of 14yrs in Store Planning, Retail Planning, VM, Presentation & teaching Retail Management.)

(submit your questions at [email protected])

Q: Now preparing for the peak of the retail season, what would be your tips for AW display? What color palate? Duration to be targeted?...Anand, New Delhi

A. Planning an effective display program for a season is a very strategic activity that needs to take into considerations the marketing and merchandising criteria for the season and this is an input to conceptualize and execute it in the store/chain. Some fundamental criteria are as below:

1. What is the store offering and its type (Apparel, home, footwear)? Premium or mass? The tone of display for mass and couture would be very different in terms of the props, display density and the signage used in the display. A mass display would look appealing if made very busy connoting value and fashion where as a premium display will need to be very minimalist to denote exclusivity. Thought the display principles are the same the configuration techniques are different for different categories and so consideration needs to be given to the merchandise category also. For example for home category 'aspiration settings' of home are very effective but for fashion apparel surrealistic displays also work.

2. Duration of the in season fashion cycle how often new collections hit the store within a season? If the fashion cycle is 2 weeks (as in Zara) then the displays have to be planned & to be changed in this period so that the merchandise featured in the display are the latest fashions.

3. What is the theme of the seasonal collection in your store? Many retailers use themes to differentiate in the market place where almost all the retailers of their kind would be changing to AW displays. A distinctive theme using graphics or a story to support it would be a good support to the displays.

4. What is the fashion color palate as planned by your store buyers? Color palates are derived from the buyers' theme, usually inspired from international trends, for a collection and this would be different for different categories across chains across regions.

Marketing Considerations:
1. What is the customer profile? Young professional, teenager, mature etc. Obviously the communication content and tone of the VM and displays needs to be planned to relate to the target customer.

2. What is the store positioning? Luxury, masstige or mass? The communication for each of these categories would be different and this would have an impact on the visual communication through the display.

3. What is the scheme or promotion being planned to induce sales and how it is planned to be communicated in the market? If the 'above the line' (outdoor, advertising, print etc.) is going to be extensive then the same needs to be supported in the 'below the line' (in store) by giving a lot of weight age in the visual communication in the VM and displays in store. If this is not there then the in store visual communication can have a stand-alone strategy.

4. What is expected competition plan for this season? Inputs on the competition activities are also critical to plan a visual communication that is distinct and differentiated for high recall of the store and its offerings for the season.

So it would be right to conclude that the plan for the season needs to be put together to meet different objectives of the store to deliver to the shopper excitement and delight.

Winter Season Sale


Budweiser's King-Sized Video Display
The beer giant replaces its old Times Square signage.
By Louis M. Brill (08-22-2007) Source: www.signweb.com

Anheuser-Busch has installed a newer, high-definition LED video spectacular at OneTimes Square. The original Daktronics LED display (Bud 1), installed in 1996, included a large-scale, dimensional, beer bottle that mechanically tilted against a background of hundreds of colored-plastic, LED-illuminated, equilateral triangles. A small Panasonic LED videoscreen graced the side of the sign face.
Landmark Signs (NYC) removed everything to prepare for Budweiser's new video spectacular (Bud 2), which Daktronics also manufactured. This display, which hugs One Times Square, measures 70 x 40 ft. and displays a 20mm pitch, with a 1,072 x 608-pixel resolution. The vertical sides are 4.5 x 70 ft. (64 x 1,072 pixels). An LED edge surrounds the main-face perimeter on three sides (left, right and bottom) and displays Budweiser branding.
Ramirez noted Bud 2 impressively anchors Times Square's entire south side with its screen size and high-resolution image clarity. Spark Agency (St. Louis) created B 2's sign content, and Daktronics' Keyframe division manages it.

The 70 x 40-ft. Budweiser Daktronics Prostar LED video display now dominates the entire south side of Times Square.
Electronic Digital Signage (EDS)-It's a Sign of the Times
by Bill Gerba Source: www.wirespring.com

For those of you involved with the visual retailing or visual merchandising industry from a non-digital perspective, there's a very good magazine published by ST Media Group called Signs of the Times (note the clever tie-in with this article's title). Focused mainly on traditional signage like neon lights, outdoor billboards and the like, this month's issue has some very good articles on digital signage, which they like to call electronic digital signage, I guess to separate it from digitally printed static signage, which has been a big revolution in their industry in recent years.

Signs of the Times magazine has been the leading source of comprehensive sign-industry news, technical information and in-depth analysis since 1906. It is our mission to educate and inspire signage and graphics professionals worldwide through award-winning editorial perspectives, technology updates, CAS reports, new product reviews, one-of-a-kind Electric and CAS/Commercial State of the Industry reports, graphics techniques, and much more.

  Electronic Digit


Recommended Books
Successful designs for retail stores require a combination of three important elements: visual merchandising, fixturing and lighting. When composed correctly the three create excitement in the store, a retail theater. This book shows you how to start with basic sketches and finish with signed contracts. Excellent illustrations give scores of examples of floor layouts, lighting arrangements, fixture studies and finished store plans. Greg M. Gorman has done store planning and visual merchandising for department stores, specialty shops and vendor shops, and has contributed to VM+SD: Visual Merchandise and Store Design magazine. This book will help any student of store design or retail store owner develop the skills to create visual excitement.

A new book from from an industry veteran on the principles of jewelry display, image, layout and planning. Author Larry B. Johnson takes you through every facet of creating and maintaining effective jewelry displays, from showcase selection, lighting, color and basic display elements, to display fabrics, specific merchandise and promotional display. He also covers floorboards, showcase trim, signage, wall cases, countertops and floor displays, accessories, windows, security concerns, maintenance and packaging. Johnson also includes a checklist of things to do prior to opening, and a glossary of visual merchandising terms for beginners. An excellent, brand new and focused resource for jewelry display.

The third edition of this series features visual presentation of merchandise beyond the traditional forms in stores and windows and in new establishments. This collection of 100 merchandising projects captured in 300 full-color photos shows the best of those presentations, including apparel, accessories and specialty items. Creative displays, point-of-purchase presentations, fixtures and graphics shine in Christmas windows, store-wide promotions, retail center presentations, restaurants and service providers. Unlike other books that focus on store designs, this book features merchandise displays.
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Send us your comments and feedback on [email protected] Your valuable suggestions can only let us improve this newsletter. For contribution of articles, snaps, information, do mail us. Hope you enjoyed this issue!! Happy displaying...