Pop-Up Retail
Reinvention in the Community

Retail is on one of the highest stages, putting on a performance that is experienced by all; and with high exposure comes high stakes.  The stakes to get into the market, to stay in the market, and to be at the forefront of it are all real pressures of the volatile retail market.  The turbulence of the industry has only increased during Covid; however, as foot traffic starts to ramp up again, many brands are dipping their toes back into the brick and mortar experience through pop-ups. 

The physical presence of a store helps a brand stand out from the never ending pool of online competitors and gives a certain legitimacy.  But, this comes at a huge investment.  Going the pop-up route is a step into the environment for both new brands as well as those looking to reinvent themselves. These short-term locations serve as testing grounds to explore new audiences, products, and designs.  

With less at risk, it allows a space to be agile and explore different experiences based on who your customer is and how they shop. One option many pop-ups have examined is relocation - more specifically to outdoor, socially distanced environments that already have an established community.  Those have included drive-in theaters, outdoor restaurants, and many local neighborhoods that guarantee more space than busy downtowns. 

However, some are staying put in big cities and choosing to reinvent what their brand brings to the market.  For example, brand Alighieri created a Florence-inspired pop-up in London that served Italian meals alongside its jewelry. The concept was inspired by the idea of an Italian holiday; bringing together friends and family to peruse jewelry and decide what to buy while catching up over dinner.

The connection created between a brand and the customer is unparalleled and cannot be recreated online alone. Physical retail not only solidifies a brand’s following, but creates and endorses community though the environment surrounding it. 

Interested in reading more about how pop-up retail has thrived during the pandemic? Check out this article from Fortune Magazine for an interesting perspective. 

Stay tuned for the next President's Message! 



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 Armstrong Flooring

Company Description:  

Thomas Armstrong started his company in 1860 as a two-man cork-cutting shop in Pittsburgh. Early on, the company began to find new uses for cork – for everything from shoe insoles to insulation to acoustical panels for recital halls. A new factory rose from a cornfield on the edge of Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and in 1909  the company started making and selling linoleum. Armstrong Flooring became a public company in 2016.

Armstrong Flooring is a leading manufacturer of resilient products across North America. The company safely and responsibly operates 8 manufacturing facilities globally, working to provide the highest levels of service, quality, and innovation to ensure it remains as strong and vital as its 150-year heritage.

Company Mission Statement:  

“Create a stronger future for our customers and company through adaptive and inventive solutions.”

Armstrong is a brand that’s built on resiliency. The resiliency of our floors that have supported people for generations, and the resiliency of our people, who continue to innovate in the face of every challenge.

Company Products / Services:  

As a leading manufacturer of resilient products, we offer a full portfolio of products suited for commercial applications – from healthcare and education, to hospitality and retail, we have you covered.

  • LVT: We proudly manufacture many of our LVT products in the USA. The unique structure of our LVT – it’s rigid wear layer and patented Diamond 10 Technology – contribute superior performance and durability.
  • SHEET: We offer homogeneous sheet and heterogenous sheet products, including a new PVC-free sheet product called MedinPure. We have a strong legacy in healthcare and education because of our robust sheet offering.
  • VCT – All of our VCT Is made in the USA. With over 100+ colors and designs to choose from, this classic, economical choice is anything but boring. It can also be recycled to divert material from landfills. To date, we’ve recycled more that 150 million pounds of material through our On&On program. We also offer a PVC-free tile that is made with rapidly renewable resources called BBT

New England Contacts:  

  • Lisa DesJardins | A&D Market Manager managing Boston, southeast and western MA, CT, and RI | [email protected] | 617-800-4720
  • Emily McBride | A&D Market Manager managing Boston, NH, VT and ME |  [email protected] | 717-682-7878
  • Chris Mechler | Market Manager, New England | 
    [email protected] | 774-249-2262
What is the best part of being an IIDA NE Chapter Sponsor?:  
IIDA offers a meaningful, fun way to engage and support the community and design leaders. It provides a platform to impact the future of design. We work with closely with architects and designers every day and our relationships are extremely valuable as we look to collaborate, educate, and support decisions that impact the built environment. We love being a Chapter Sponsor!


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