Inside Outdoor Magazine - Fall 2018

Inside Outdoor | FALL 2018 18 I n a brick and mortar store, nothing is more valuable than a product or display that gets customers talking. Retailers are constantly on the lookout for eye-catching items that cause customers to approach associ- ates first with questions. One company that has been doing a great job of this is CEP Compres- sion, which earlier this year installed a series of display walls in select specialty running stores across the U.S. CEP’s brightly-colored displays showcase the company’s eye-catching compression apparel, along with three signs explaining their athletic, medi- cal and comfort benefits. Each header contains bullet points that educate consum- ers about CEP products. Interestingly, CEP’s focus on color and design aligns with a study from the Journal of Business Research that revealed how people make a sub- conscious judgement on an environment or product within 90 seconds of initial viewing. Ninety percent of that assessment is based on color alone. What’s more, 80 percent of customers believe that color increases brand recognition. And 52 percent of customers have not returned to a store due to its overall aesthetics. CEP, it seems, is onto something here. Some stores have reported that CEP sales have increased by almost 60 percent since installing the displays. “Our walls force conversations,” explained CEP national sales manager Jeff Irvine. “It’s like having a silent sales associate in the store. The per- son comes in, sees the sign and right away it piques his or her interest. The customer can then sit down with a sales associate and go through the fitting pro- cess. The wall starts a conversation.” The displays also help train em- ployees on how to sell CEP products, which is important when considering the high turnover rate that retail stores tend to have. The walls allow CEP to spend less time training new sales as- sociates, as the majority of information is already provided right in the display. “The walls have definitely proven to be a great educational foundation that continues to open the door for us to dive deeper into the product advantages,” commented Bronson Lee, store manager at Potomac River Running. Many of CEP’s Compression walls feature custom photos that mirror the retailer’s local environment. Some, for instance, have urban backgrounds while others feature park themes or running clubs. Some displays are more technical than others, too. CEP has the ability to add digital components with touch screen options to further educate consumers about its brand. CEP, it should be noted, covers the cost of each dis- play including a tablet if it’s requested. As Irvine added, this is all part of CEP’s ongoing com- mitment to support brick and mortar retail. While some competitors have slashed their sales force and gone completely digital in recent years, CEP continues to invest capital into physical, in-store marketing initiatives. “We are doubling down on retail investment,” Irvine said. “The feedback has been pretty strong, too. In the beginning, there was a fight to give up wall space. But when we started building them and the sales started increasing, more stores started contacting us.” By year’s end, CEP aims to have around 200 com- pression walls on display across the U.S. m Buyer’s Side By Gerald Baldino ‘Conversation Starter’ CEP Compression finds success with new in-store displays