Simply Souvenir Podcast: Episode 1
In the first ever Simply Souvenir podcast, our host Josselyn Thornton reaches out to buyers from Clarion UX gift and souvenir shows to find out what products they’re buying, what products sell well for them and what buyers should be looking for at the upcoming round of shows. Here are a few of highlights:
- Pat, Martella's Pharmacy | Johnstown, PA
- Isabel, Silverton Pharmacy | Tom's River, NJ
- Nancy, Grand Canyon Resort Corp | Grand Canyon National Park, AZ
- Teresa, Mt. Rainier National Park | Ashford, WA
What products do you sell?
Martella's Pharmacy: I have six pharmacies that sell sports merchandise, women’s accessories candles, jewelry, gadgets, seasonal merchandise, and pet section. The goal is to have a wide range of items for customers.
Mt. Rainier National Park: I have a range of basic souvenirs that appeal to national park collectors along with gift and collectable items.
Silverton Pharmacy: I have a pharmacy gift store that sells fashion, jewelry, house wares, candles, décor, outdoor garden items, plush, baby, health and beauty.
Grand Canyon Resort: There are seven gift shops in the Grand Canyon area that are souvenir based. One specifically sells Native American handmade products such as silver jewelry, handmade artifacts and other cultural items.
Who is your specific audience?
Martella's Pharmacy: The stores are located in rural areas and mimic a mini superstore catering to a diverse customer audience. We have one pharmacy located across from a hospital that results in 200 new customers every day. We have another pharmacy located in a town with an older population. Our main customer audience’s age group is 45-75 years. A third pharmacy is located near a high school creating a younger, after-school audience.
Grand Canyon Resort: Gift shops in the Grand Canyon results in a tourist-based audience ages 40-60 years of age.
Silverton Pharmacy: I have an older cliental that is age 45+ who loves greeting cards and knick-knacks.
Mt. Rainier National Park: I see many repeat customers and local customers from Seattle and Portland. My audience also includes families on vacation and international customers- mainly from Asia. Our audience is looking for a connection to nature.
What products are selling well?
Martella's Pharmacy: Currently, Easter merchandise – People come to us for seasonal products. Pet products are also very popular because people have no limit on spending for their pet. Springtime brings popularity to women’s apparel.
Mt. Rainier National Park: Apparel is popular for us, especially in the winter. Souvenir items sell well too.
Silverton Pharmacy: Fashion is selling well, specifically ponchos. Shell designs of soaps, and lotions are also popular.
What will sell well this summer?
Martella's Pharmacy: Seasonal items will sell well such as wind chimes, flags, and banners. Graduation season and wedding season are next.
Mt. Rainier National Park: Many people will come to the parks to see wildflowers this summer. So we will highlight that with mugs, magnets, prints, and apparel.
Silverton Pharmacy: Our popular items will be beach toys for kids, sun products, outdoor games, and graduation gifts.
Grand Canyon Resort: Hats and souvenirs will sell. Dreamcatchers are best sellers.
What new items are you looking for at the shows?
Martella's Pharmacy: I’m done buying for this year and will be looking for next spring. I will be looking for wind chimes, new flags and banners, garden accessories, spring colors of women’s accessories. If we see something unique then we may add it to our third and fourth quarters if we really want it.
Silverton Pharmacy: At the shows, I will be looking for something different, such as a new toy or a new gadget, even a new snack that is different than the norm.
Grand Canyon Resort: I am always looking for new, innovative items that are souvenir based.
Mt. Rainier National Park: It is my goal to work with my store managers to gain feedback from customers so ultimately the customer is helping me dictate what I am looking for at a show.
What do you love about attending Urban shows?
Martella's Pharmacy: I like to see what’s new. The Philadelphia show offers many unique products that are not normally found in our area. It’s an opportunity to find items that are different than what competitors are selling.
Silverton Pharmacy: I like that the show is close, by making it convenient to go and shop. I can easily find my tried and true sellers and also discover new.
Grand Canyon Resort: The Vegas Souvenir Show offers a great opportunity to see so many exhibitors and find everything that I am looking for.
An insight to store buyers from Teresa Inman:
Guests are coming from different backgrounds to buy their souvenirs. That’s why it is important to have a wide variety of products in different price ranges.
Have a product for everyone, make sure you’re always trying to find new and innovative items, and always plan ahead. It’s easier to be in front of your competition and stay there than it is to try and catch up.
To listen to the entire podcast, click here.