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In this special episode, we recorded Live at the Las Vegas Market. It may be August when this is airing, but as retailers, you know the holidays are coming!
The holidays are a big time of year for retailers across nearly all niches, from decorating to gifts.
Returning from episode 4 (if you haven’t listened to this one yet, be sure to do so if you don’t want to miss it) is Michelle Sherrier from The Retail Whore Podcast.
She is sharing her design, planning, and merchandising expertise when it comes to all things holiday. Do I have any pet stores, jewelers, or toy stores out there? Michelle gives industry specific ideas on how to build a sale and a story this gift season.
Listen, don’t let October sneak up on you! Michelle wants you to know that it is too late to start planning because you want to be sold out before the holiday hits!
If you’re feeling stressed out just thinking about these things, you need to stay till the end as we discuss some tips for relieving burnout during a busy holiday!
You may be busy; it may be hard. Just remember to enjoy this season and take time for your traditions!
I’m rooting for your success.
- All about Holidays and Burnout.
- Foundation best practices for retailers.
- The key to standing out in a crowded market.
- THE ITEM this holiday season.
Mentioned in the Episode
- Crystal Media: Social Media Hooks and Hacks for Retailers
- The Retail Whore Podcast
- Michelle Sherrier (@mcdesigncollaboration) • Instagram photos and videos
- Michelle Sherrier (@theretailwhorepodcast) • Instagram photos and videos
- All Things Visual: Creating a Merchandising Moment with Michelle Sherrier, The Retail Whore – Crystal Media
- EVOLVE 2024 in Denver, CO – Crystal Media
- Crystal Media Insiders
- Crystal Media
- Crystal on Instagram
- Crystal Media on Instagram
- Crystal Media Co – YouTube
In this episode of Rooted in Retail, I’m sitting down in person with Michelle Sherrier Retail Whore podcast, which a lot of our retailers love, and Michelle has been on my podcast. It was episode four of Rooted in Retail, one of the very first, and we got such great feedback from that. Michelle is a retail expert in design, display, merchandising. She, I love her creative mind. I put her on the spot in this episode of giving her, um, tasks like challenges to tell me how she would merchandise different stores. Um, jeweler and pet store. We talk about a few different examples in there, which was a lot of fun. If you’re watching this episode, you’ll notice that we are in person.
I had the opportunity to sit down with several guests at the Las Vegas market this summer. It was an honor to be able to do this in person. It’s just way better having these conversations in person versus Zoom, so hopefully you get to tune in and watch versus listen. But either way, I’m glad that you’re here because Michelle and I are talking about holidays and burnout.
Holidays are approaching. She’s got foundational best. Practices for you. Um, you know, key things that you really need to be considering how to stand out in a crowded market and really capture people’s attention with your displays and your merchandise. How to pull people in to your store. She always has so many great tips for our retailers, so I know you’re gonna get a lot out of this episode. We also are talking about the item for holiday, and I’m already seeing it all over the place, so I’d be curious if you’re already, if you’re selling this item too, you’ll have to DM me and let me know. We also talk about burnout because during the holiday season it can be a lot to obviously sell.
You’re busy, hopefully, and we can get tired and exhausted, and so Michelle’s got some really great tips for you as a store owner as well as for your employees, how to help support them. Really great conversation covering a lot of ground. I just wanna point out that the end of the conversation, we talk about something that’s really cool that Michelle is doing.
So I hope that you listen to this full episode to just give you a quick heads up about it. You really should be following her Instagram account, mc design collaboration. M as in Mary, C design collaboration because she is doing reviews on people’s submitted pictures of their displays and giving advice and saying things she likes or what she’d do different.
You could submit your own photos. It’s definitely something you’re gonna wanna follow along. You’ll learn a lot from Michelle through this, and I think it’s one of the coolest things I’ve seen people do on Instagram to really connect with their community. Uh, I love her. She’s got. So much value to add to this conversation.
So we’ll link. If you haven’t listened to episode four, go back and do that, on Rooted. And tune into her podcast, the Retail Whore, and let’s dive into this episode. Welcome to Rooted In Retail, the show that’s dedicated to helping independent retailers thrive in today’s ever evolving retail landscape. I’m your host, Crystal Vilkaitis, and I’m thrilled to have you join me weekly as we explore topics that are vital to the success of your store from marketing to mindset.
Money to merchandising. Sales to leadership, we’ll cover it all. Each episode features interviews with industry experts and accomplished retailers who share their real life insights and actionable advice. Get ready for a great conversation on how to build your dream business with Rooted in Retail.
Michelle, welcome to Rooted in Retail. I’m thrilled you’re here.
Michelle Sherrier: Thank you. It’s so great to do this in person.
Crystal Vilkaitis: I know. It’s so much better than Zoom.
Michelle Sherrier: A hundred percent.
Crystal Vilkaitis: And we are live at market.
Michelle Sherrier: Yep.
Crystal Vilkaitis: We’re so excited to be here in Las Vegas at the market. We’re so happy that they let us do this. You have been here for a long time.
Michelle Sherrier: Yes.
Crystal Vilkaitis: Yeah. Share a little of what you’ve been doing here at Market.
Michelle Sherrier: So I not only merchandise with retailers, I also set up wholesale showrooms. So Steven Young is my biggest client. He opened a showroom last show and he expanded the show. So I will, I did the original setup with him and then I’ll go in and do some zhuzhing fine lines.
Expanded their expanded and moved also up to the 11 four. ’cause I don’t know how many people know this, but the 11 four, the building is trying to make, or is, is planning on making it more of a design based floor. So there’s. Other showrooms that are moving up that I can’t, I don’t think I can announce yet, but it’s gonna be very design savvy, almost like high, high, uh, design.
It’s a high design at New York now, so, um, fine lines. I spent some time doing merchandise from them, and then I moved downstairs to sales producers, to my other showrooms. So I, I, I’m doing, I’m. We’re setting up all the new vendors as well as, you know, recreating all the displays. So everything comes down, everything gets built back up.
It’s all based around, you know, the holiday or new introductions or, but it’s been, it’s, it’s been great, but I’m so ready to go home.
Crystal Vilkaitis: Uhhuh. Yeah. It’s a long time to be in Vegas.
Michelle Sherrier: Uh, yeah,
Crystal Vilkaitis: those are big jobs. Um, so I mean, thank you for taking the time outta your busy schedule. Yeah. And sitting down. So we are airing this in the month of October, and our theme in October is all about holidays and burnout.
Mm-hmm. Because they kind of come together, right. The holiday season is so crazy for our retailers. So let’s talk about as the holidays approach, what are some of the most important factors that retailers should consider in their merchandising strategy?
Michelle Sherrier: I think planning’s the most important. Like yesterday I was with a client and you know, you come to market, I think a lot of people and it’s like there’s so much to see and there’s so much to take in.
And initially you get super excited and you start writing orders. And that’s why I say all the time, like I walk the floors before just so I can get a good idea of what, because you’ll see the trends as they kind of unravel from showroom to showroom. And you know, I said to my client yesterday, do you, do you have an idea of what your holiday.
Is gonna look like, because you know, I concept, I came out of anthropology, so I concept very heavily. And when I’m buying, I’m cherry picking lines to create a concept. But I think a lot of people get there and they’re like, oh, this, that. And I think knowing what your concept is or what it looks like both in holiday merchandise as well as non-holiday and how it’s gonna merge together and what your gift presentations are gonna be, whether they’re tabletop, hand-in-hand gifts, like, spoons and platters or whatnot. I think knowing that is really important and you know that way then, and putting it on paper, on a calendar. ’cause I, I think that, you know, with my clients, we have it mapped out a year in advance. Like I know that I’m setting up Mason a on the weekend of Halloween for her holiday.
But I think having on paper, which helps you understand which dates you’re gonna bring in, in delivery windows. So you bring it in this timeline, then, you know, you’re setting it up in this timeline. I think having that on paper or you know, spreadsheet, whatever you’re doing on is really important.
Crystal Vilkaitis: No kidding.
Do you feel like October, is that too late to be planning for the
holiday since this is–
Michelle Sherrier: I think planning’s too late. I think a lot of, I hate to say it because you know, the land now, the landscape of, of the home goods and, uh, Hobby Lobby and how they, I mean, Hobby Lobby, half of the jobs I did this show were rolling out some Christmas and.
Where do you buy Christmas trees in July? Well, Hobby Lobby, because they roll it out, but they roll it out so early and then by the time everyday retailers and boutiques roll it out, Hobby Lobby’s already got it at 50% off. True. And, and same thing as home goods. And, and I think that’s the challenge now that retailers have, and, and a lot of retailers are like, I, no, no one wants to see it before October.
No one wants to see it, but bottom line is it needs to sell and it, it needs to sell through. So if you. Put it out too late, you know, it’s a fine line, but if you put it out too late, this person’s already got it on sale. This, or, and you wanna be able to sell it through so you don’t have to put it on sale.
Right. Okay. So I, I, I am setting up retailers start, I mean, Halloween, it’s. It’s hard because you’ve got your Halloween presentation still and all of a sudden Christmas is going up, but it’s really, you know, earlier than, that’s a fine line, but there’s a lot of people that put it up that early and they’re selling through if not selling it out.
Okay. I think Roman’s bookstore last season when I was talking to my friend Fabian, who was their buyer, He’s like, we’re, we’ve put it up two weeks ago and it’s already half the stuff’s already sold out. Wow. And it’s bottom line is again, like you wanna be sold through it by the time the holiday actually reaches.
Crystal Vilkaitis: Okay. And it’s July as we’re filming this. So, I mean, just to give context on timing,
Michelle Sherrier: get ready people.
Crystal Vilkaitis: I know. No kidding. Get ready and you gotta plan. I mean, I love the. The quote, fail to plan. Plan to fail. Yeah. I mean, just like anything. So we gotta make sure we’re ready. Um, what about some best practices for holiday merchandising that can ensure both customer satisfaction and optimal sales performance?
Michelle Sherrier: Mm. Cross merchandising and add-on sales. I, you know, I, I talk about this all the time, is that when you are building your presentation, whether it’s personal care or tabletop or whatnot, like think about what your customer is gonna. Use them with candles, pair up matches with it, do some presets. Like I, you know, I love the idea of spending some time, and you don’t have to go crazy with the pre wrapp thing, but, um, for one of my accounts we did, uh, salts from, I think it was Bella Cucina, and then she bought bamboo spoons from somewhere else.
We tied them on with a little burlap and a little tiny twig of like faux green, so it felt like holiday. It was an easy purchase. It’s like you can grab and go and you’re building up your sales. Totally. And I think if you make your own presets, like sets and whatnot, you have a bigger profit margin built in because if you can find some great, like inexpensive little bamboo spoon and tie it on a higher end because food only has so much of a, a markup.
So your profit margin’s really building and like building this up and whatever you’re bringing into it has a bigger profit margin, which will boost the wholesale. Mm-hmm.
Crystal Vilkaitis: Awesome. Okay. I kind of wanna put you on the spot and give you a couple of questions that are industry specific that aren’t necessarily gift and home.
I would be curious how you would do a add-on or on for a jewel or cross sale or add on for a jeweler.
Michelle Sherrier: Um, for high end diamonds. Diamonds are a hard one, you know, because it, it’s, I think, you know, the layered look is showing multiple designs on one, because I mean, everything right now, we all layer everything.
And I think that if you are. You know, I don’t think you can build on much on a $50,000 diamond necklace, but I think that if you’re selling, you know, the tennis bracelets or show them in multiples and show different price points with them, because I think that, you know, it’s easy for someone to go. I love that.
But okay, so that’s 4,000. Like how much is that one? It’s like, that one’s a thousand, so it’s almost like a deal, right? So it’s easier to, to sneak in, you know, medium price things to help sell. Upsell the higher price things, but also a lot of times they will buy the other, the other item as well.
Crystal Vilkaitis: It’s so good.
It’s the price justification, right. When I see something, I love that. Okay. What about for a pet shop? The pet store?
Michelle Sherrier: Oh, pet stores are easy and it’s like I have three dogs. So I mean, I just think like toys and treats and beds and, and toys that go back with the beds. I mean there are so many lines that do such a good job.
Fringe Pet Shop has like expanded ’cause I do fringe for Steven Young and their pet division has blown up. It is so big and it’s so like full of toys and they’re concepting now. It was so cute. For the summer, they did this whole little barbecue thing and they did like these little toys that look like little, like sides of meat with, you know, like in a butcher shop and little teeny tiny barbecues.
But I think that if you can build your sale, say it’s like a, you know, a wilderness thing you can do, or like they did hunting toys too, which I’m not a. Hunting fan or anything. Yeah. But, okay. You know, I’m sure there’s dog beds. You can tie back to that, that with the toy with it. Like, I, I just, I mean, concepting, I think for pet stores would be the funnest thing to do.
Crystal Vilkaitis: Yeah, no kidding. It sounds like it.
Oh my gosh. Um, okay. Finally, what about a toy store?
Michelle Sherrier: Toy store, same things. I mean it’s like, you know, pl– like for us at the pharmacy, we’ll do plush and books that go back to it, plus other little fidget toys. We build really big stories. Um, so, uh, Erin was doing, ’cause it is my last season with Bert’s Pharmacy, which I’ve been with them for seven years and it’s like this like weird sad thing, but I have to really stand back now ’cause it’s really Erin’s show. So, you know, she’s building concepts as I trained her and she did like an astronaut. So she was pulling puzzles from one vendor and books from another vendor and then astronaut candy from something else where you create these really big statements.
I think it also keeps your, your statements more cohesive. So it’s not like, like I have somebody that’s like, I want to do those crystal soap rocks. I’m like, it’s a hard one because if you don’t have a personal care department, like what is it going back to? And what happens is when it hasn’t, doesn’t have a strong concept to go back to.
It floats miscellaneously throughout your store and all of a sudden it’s like, why is this not selling? Because there’s one, there’s nothing for the customer to tie it back to like, I love the soap rock. Like what you, you want to feed them like whole concepts, like look at all this amazing stuff that you can get and toy stores are like, are the best because there’s so much things that you can build in together with it between plush and books and games and whatnot.
Crystal Vilkaitis: Mm-hmm. Oh, I love it. Okay.
Thanks for doing that. We went off. Script. That’s all
right. I had to know, I love off script.
Michelle Sherrier: You know, I don’t do any pre-questions in the podcast, so I get the tables turned on me.
Crystal Vilkaitis: I know. I love it. I love doing that.
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Okay. How can retailers differentiate themselves during the holiday season in terms of their merchandising efforts to stand out in an overcrowded market?
Michelle Sherrier: I think concepting. I think again, the strongest, the stronger that you merchandise and the customer walks in because you have what, 30 seconds to wow somebody. And a lot of times people shop from the door and they’re like, you know, you have your customers that obvi obviously are gonna be coming to you no matter what.
But I think that if you are concepting and you’re building stories, ’cause merchandising is storytelling, and the more you’re storytelling and telling these amazing things, the more you’re kind of pulling them into the store. And it’s like, what is that? And, and I think that your opening statement is the most important statement out of everything in your entire store.
It’s what your store, your customer sees walking by front door. It’s the first thing. It sets the stage. It’s something that’s so important, whether it be a concept that you’re rolling out or just. You know, for the, for the showrooms, it’s always, the opening statement is always the ta-da moment. And that’s what literally like reels people in so I think that having strong concepts and having very strong opening statements that gets your customer in the door from, you know, the like as they’re walking by or ’cause it’s that wow moment. You want people to walk in and be like, oh my God, this is amazing. And then, you know, continue to pull through.
But I think the strong concepts is really important.
Crystal Vilkaitis: Mm-hmm. Well, and I, of course, because I’m in social media, I see that being such great social content because it’s all about storytelling. Mm-hmm. And so you build that within the store, and then you’re also using that as content for social. Yeah. I think also when you have those wow moments, it makes the, the customer take the picture and they’re sharing, they kind of become this viral sales soldier for you.
So it may, it’s worth taking that time. I just feel like. The, the consumer has so many choices now. Yeah. And there’s a lot of convenience online. And so for us to really capture that attention, we have to put some effort into it.
Michelle Sherrier: I think also is that customer service is a very lar obviously large part of it, but it’s like, Because I hear the Amazon thing all the time, and it’s like the wholesalers have the same thing with Fair and some other platforms, and it’s like, but I think that your customer service and how you treat your customers and how you wrap it, like Nathan’s in Oakland, Nathan’s wrap jobs are incredible. And it, it’s like he has a team of kids that come back every season. They’re in a back table, they wrap these amazing, but that, that is literally not just the merchandise, but it’s literally why people go to him because this beautiful wrap job. And I think that. Between your merchandising, the products you sell, your price points, your customer service is equally as important to all that.
And for the stores that say, don’t take pictures of me. ’cause I, it is a peeve. Like Fred Segley used to say, no photos in the store, which, okay, like the, I, I never agreed with it. But now, in a world of social media, there’s still people, there’s still showrooms here that say no photos. It’s because there’s knocking people knock people off.
But you’re cutting yourself off from a customer being able to share, like I was ready to share. This one showroom stuff. It’s so cute. And he literally stops me in front of, like, stands in front of Please no photos. I’m like, okay. Like, but that stops you from like your piece going out to, you don’t even know who’s taking your picture and where they’re gonna send it.
Yeah. And it’s like there, it’s. The knockoff thing is out there, I think be less worried about that. Be less worried about the Amazon, worry about your focus on your customer service, stuff like that is what shoots you in the foot sometimes, I think.
Crystal Vilkaitis: Absolutely. I so agree. I so agree. So good, Michelle. Okay.
What about some key merchandising trends you’re seeing this holiday season?
Michelle Sherrier: Okay, I. Have been doing, I’ve been mostly appointments, but the last two days I will say mushrooms are still super big and there’s high end mushrooms, like amazing fabric mushrooms that have like velvet tops with little pearls as the accents, to super inexpensive lines that are doing it. And I think, like, like I said, I cherry pick. So for, for raw paradise, we’re gonna do mushrooms. And last year we did a, a collections. Ornaments from Cody Foster from Creative Co-Op, and now we’re gonna kind of beef it up and like include some other things. We’re gonna mix it with Crystal so it gives it, you know, more of that glitter, but there’s so much good mushroom and it’s, you can go two different ways.
You can go the traditional red and black with the polka dots, or you can go this really pretty organic, kind of natural, more botanist feel. But I, I mean, I, I’m loving the mushroom thing. That’s, that’s literally what I’ve seen almost everywhere. ‘
Crystal Vilkaitis: Okay.
I’m gonna see mushrooms everywhere this holiday season.
Michelle Sherrier: I mean, they’ve been out for a while too, because it’s like, there’s always a trend where, you know, sloths, I was like, please, and bees, like the bees are still super strong, but you’re seeing them kind of drop off now, thank God, because they’re, you know, it starts obviously the, the most courageous designers put out these random objects and then you watch other vendors kind of like, okay, they’re selling. And then you watch the trend kind of grow and then you know when it’s at the less expensive lines that it’s like, you know, okay, now it’s a trend. And you know, that’s where it starts to kind of eek back a little bit, but.
It’s so, because you can do it two different ways. I think it’s got a lot of legs. I think it’s gonna be a while. Okay.
Crystal Vilkaitis: Alright.
I can’t wait. That sounds,
Michelle Sherrier: you heard it here.
Crystal Vilkaitis: Are you ready here? Mushrooms? I know. I love it.
Um, okay, let’s talk a little bit about burnout, because the holiday season is, So busy for a lot of our retailers and um, I mean, you’re working every single day and long hours and it can be such a fun, amazing time, but it can also be super stressful.
So what are some strategies that retailers can implement to prevent burnout among their. Employees, let’s start there with employees, particularly during this busy season,
Michelle Sherrier: I think, you know, thinking back to the days of like when I had my stores and I was in, and you’re in the grind day in, day out, I think keeping it fun and it, I know because I think all of us, when we get really stressed, like.
It’s not fun anymore. Uhhuh like, you’re, like, you’ve lost the sense of humor. You just, at this point just wanna wrap and go. But I think if you keep it fun with contests for your employees, where it gets momentum, you know, I, I forget what store it was, but they would have pizza parties, you know, because the, the staff also, it’s like some stores.
You, you, you wanna keep your employees like, like eat lunch here. So, and if you don’t want them to wander off because then they come back late or their food was late or you know, whatever happens, you know, bring ’em in lunch. Like make it something fun, do a contest. I think the contest thing is really, because a lot of stores don’t work on commission and I don’t really agree with Commission, but I do think that you wanna have something.
To engage them as well as like strive for, and, and I think it was Annie from Urban Girl in San Diego when I interviewed her, what I love at holiday, she, you know, they don’t do commission either. She doesn’t believe in it either, but they, you know, for their managers that really, you know, everyone has their goals.
So, you know, your, your stores goals, your team should know your goals. There’s a lot of people that don’t and don’t tell their employees like, This, like, we wanna do a million dollars, here’s how we’re gonna break down a million dollars. Here’s your goal. A lot of stores don’t share that information, which I think is crazy.
But you know, if you’re not going to at least give them a sales goal and then they’ll chart it on a wall. So everyone kind of, kind of gets their own competition within the store. But for Annie, what she did was with her, all of her, ’cause she’s got 10 locations, and so she gave each of her managers there in San Diego like a.
Three or $400 certificate to the resort, the Indian, uh, resort that that has gambling and stuff like that. So they could get their room. They had enough to go out to dinner. They, you know, could go get a massage or whatever. And it was like this. Love that big, beautiful, here’s the end of your season gift and thanks so much for, you know, or bonus.
But I think that, you know, contests for your employees and if you have multiple locations, Contests where they’re like working. The other stores are all kind of competing with each other. I mean, anther did the same thing. Like we knew, we all knew what each other’s numbers were and it was always like this race of who was gonna beat who.
Crystal Vilkaitis: Okay. So many good ideas in there. I love this. Now what about for the store owner? How can they prevent burnout? Or if they’re in it, like how can they have some balance?
Michelle Sherrier: I think, you know, I just keep thinking of how I try and keep balance for myself when I’m in, like I’m coming off of almost a month.
I’m, yeah, burnout. Wait, I know I’m burned out when I’m in a car and I’m getting super aggressive and I’m getting so impatient with the light. ’cause the lights in Las Vegas are so long compared to Los Angeles. Yes. That’s why I know I’m getting burnout and the way I’ve managed to combat it is to. Take, you know, still 12 or 14 hours, but try and some days take an afternoon and go get a massage or for me, go get acupuncture or go do something for yourself where you take yourself out of the store and the stress, because it’s gonna be there when you come back.
And I think that a lot of people literally will be there like, no, I need to be here. And, no, and it’s, you get caught in this. Drain of like, I need to be here. I need to be here. And it’s like, it’s actually making you worse. It’s making you more aggravated, it’s making your team more stressed out, is to take that time for yourself.
Go get a massage. Go get a foot massage. Go. Watch sunset with your husband or spouse or, or, and, and have a glass of wine, like whatever it is, take time for yourself. Because if you don’t, you’ll literally go down the, I, you know, for here, I had a moment where we were doing a display and it’s, there’s always a moment where you cry and now all the owners know this, that you’re doing something, something and it’s the dumbest thing that makes you break down.
And for me it was display that was supposed to hold weight and it didn’t hold weight. And it was like, Oh my God, my husband, who’s my contractor, is leaving tomorrow. Like, I have to fix this because if I just broke it for sure, the reps are gonna load it up and it’s gonna break in the middle of the show.
And then it’s my responsibility. And I had my meltdown and I, I told my husband, I’m like, I’m gonna go get a massage. And there’s this. Place here that’s in California, also called The Now, and they don’t play pan pan flute. They only play the sound of loud crashing waves and the sensory like to be face down and just hear the sound of waves.
Like it was one of those things. It was. So crazy because that sound, it just literally took out all the stress. Oh, wow. Because it pan flutes, it’s easy to think of over and above, like bad pamphlet music. Waves? Not so much. Yeah. And especially when they’re so loud. So it, it’s, I realize that it, you have to take care of yourself in order to take care of your store and your team and the more angsted out and aggravated and frustrated you are, your team is going to feel that, and then they are not productive. And then your customers feel it and it’s so important if you start, they always say the fish rots from the head. If you start at you and take care of you and your mental and your physical, that it ends up a good, good trickle down effect for the rest of your team and customers.
Crystal Vilkaitis: So good. Michelle, what advice? Final advice do you have for our retailers during the holiday season?
Michelle Sherrier: God enjoy it. Like I’m the weirdo that starts playing Christmas music in like October, partly because I have to do setups and I have to be into, but I, I really, it’s, I really try and step back and enjoy the season.
’cause it’s a season that I. I technically should hate because I, you know, my setups go from, I go from setting up Christmas in retailers to setting up gift show, but I literally will like, try and take the time of going see a light show and going, you know, try and go out and same thing. Have a cup of cocoa with my husband and watch sunset, or just bundle up and take a walk.
But it, it’s. Is try and enjoy the season and try and just take it in and, and again, just take care of yourself first.
Crystal Vilkaitis: Love it. Now I want you to share what you’re doing on Instagram with retailers, submitting pictures, and you’re critiquing because I think this is one of the coolest. Things that you are doing that I’ve seen somebody do with Instagram.
So will you please talk about it?
Michelle Sherrier: Yeah. You know, it’s, it’s funny, a a a, one of our followers actually pitched it. She said, you know, I think a great idea to do reels is to have people sending pictures of their stores and you critique ’em and. Brie and Jane, I’ve been watching her do it with, you know, somebody’s remodel and it was kind of there.
But when she threw this up there and simultaneously it was crazy, one of the stores said, sent me a picture, I hate, I know you’re really busy. I hate to ask this. Do you mind giving me some advice on this display? And I said, it’s obviously the universe is telling me I need to do this. Because it was so kismet that the two things had nothing to do with each other yet were the exact same thing.
So we’ve been asking people send a picture. Your store, whether it’s your floor plan or a display or a window, and I asked, let me know what your frustration is. I don’t want to give just my unbiased opinion. I’d rather know like, what is your frustration? What? What is it? You’re not gonna, people aren’t shopping this?
’cause I can walk through a store on a Zoom call and see exactly like I was on a Zoom call the other day. I’m like, do you have trouble getting people that backspace? And they go, yeah, they get here and they just turn around. I’m like, ’cause you have a giant blockade. Mm. So, Tell me what your frustration is.
Tell me what is not working. Tell me, you know, what, what you feel like you’re missing, and then I can look at it. ’cause I, I, I’m not here, I don’t wanna bash people’s displays. I, I just, it’s really like, it’s really about helping retailers and, and it’s things that not all of us see. Like the one from the other day was, Um, she had a bookcase and there was so much negative space because it’s a bookcase that only holds so many shelves and it’s staggered.
So if you have shelves here, you can’t do one here. It’s, it’s really, so you end up with these weird, giant negative spaces and, you know, you put something on a, a whatever thing and it’s holding it up and it’s still, all you see is negative space. So to go in and say, you know, I would use bigger risers.
Start with larger items at the bottom. ’cause your weight of a display is heaviest on the bottom and it gets smaller at the top. And when it is smaller, you use like bigger risers to give it some and then use mirrors in that negative space. ’cause mirrors will end up making it look like there’s more.
Mm-hmm. So we’re asking pictures again, your window or an opening statement or your floor plan or whatever it is to send it in. Uh, you can DM me or you can email us at, um, mc design collaboration, or you can send it through dmm through both the Retail Whore Podcast or mc design and just tell me what your frustration is.
And we’re doing reels and we’re going on and we’re talking about it, and it’s been really fun and I can’t wait for it to keep going.
Crystal Vilkaitis: Totally. And even if you’re not submitting a a photo or video, go follow Michelle and hear what she’s saying from other people. I mean, you’re going to create so much content on what and see what other retailers are doing and how you would critique it.
And then this is also your opportunity to get some advice from an expert or free I do for free, which I just love so much. So we’ll link to all of that. Thank you for helping support our retailers. Now, you were one of my very first podcast guests. For Rooted in Retail like episode four or five, we’re gonna link to it because you’ve already done the resilience round, so we’re gonna link to it so people can hear your answers there.
And if they haven’t listened to the episode, they have to because I learned so much from that, that show, and we got. Such great feedback from it too, so.
Michelle Sherrier: Well, it’s funny, our worlds are very different. They all work together, but it, it’s, you know, ’cause I wanna have you back on to talk about holiday social media because, you know, so many people learn so much from you and it’s like everything, it all goes hand in hand.
And I, I loved. I love being able to talk to retailers ’cause it’s, you know, there’s so much and there’s so many tools now that are available to everybody and I don’t, I think conversations like this and retail podcasts are like, there’s so much information out there and it’s everything from social media to merchandising and they’re very different worlds.
All of them.
Crystal Vilkaitis: Yeah. Yeah. But there, when you can talk to a couple of experts and understand what you need to be doing and then how they can really. Work together. I mean, there’s a lot of things that you can do together there. So thrilled for this conversation. Thank you so much for being on the show.
Michelle Sherrier: Oh, you’re so welcome. Thank you so much.
Crystal Vilkaitis: And everyone, keep in mind remember that I’m rooting for your success. Have a great week ahead. Bye.
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