MDO leads off-price retail center category with a robust experiential and influencer program designed to attract iGens and Boomers to support world-class retail tenants.
MANCHESTER CENTER, Vt., Sept. 26, 2018 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ -- A recent study by Event Marketer found that 74 percent of consumers have a better perception of a brand or store after participating in an experiential event and 98 percent are more likely to purchase after having a meaningful experience. This year Manchester Designer Outlets (MDO) is tapping into the age of influence with experiential programs designed to attract plugged-in consumers from across New England and beyond.
"MDO has been a leader in the designer outlet space for decades – the first true lifestyle center to preserve, not disrupt local charm and implement green building methods." Remarks Lana Hauben, president Manchester Designer Outlets, "Our customers are not your typical bargain shoppers, they want more than just great deals; they expect a world-class shopping experience."
MDO leveraged the expertise of Gale Branding a marketing agency headquartered in Manhattan's Highline district that works within the destination-marketing category to help retail clients reach digital natives from iGens to Boomers on their own turf. The designer outlets' new experiential program launched with the first-annual MDO ZenFest, a two-day wellness festival that took place at the end of June 2018. The center worked with local yoga gurus, relevant musical talent, well-known local vendors and MDO's retail tenants to expand the center's share of voice.
"You simply can't rely on sales and advertising to attract the best retail tenants in the business," says Alissa Hauben Appel, director of leasing, Vanderbilt Equities Corporation. "We are engaging organizations, trend-setters, and influencers both hyper-local and across the region to co-create experiences that deliver quality traffic for our prestigious tenants."
Property ownership also wanted to tap a highly visible environmental charity to create a feel-good purchase moment during MDO ZenFest. The result was the first-ever Shop for the Environment Store Hop where a percentage of sales during the two-day event were allocated to benefit 1% for the Planet.
The center's most popular event happens in August when shoppers flock to the Manchester Sidewalk Sale, hosted by MDO and other independently owned shops across town. This year, MDO partnered with mom boss, Nicole Feliciano, CEO of Momtrends, inviting its social followers for an exclusive look into Nicole and her teenage daughter's back-to-school shopping haul, sharing their favorite sale finds and experiences.
"If you ask me, Manchester Designer Oultes are a shopping adventure: this is a high-end shopping experience," comments Nicole Feliciano, CEO Momtrends. "I was impressed by three things: the selection, the setting, and the service."
During the busy fall winter shopping season MDO launched a series of tastemaker workshops, book signings, and appearances. Dubbed Style Saturdays, these monthly intimate gatherings offer experience seekers the opportunity to meet some of New England's leading authorities on style, beauty, and décor. The series opened on September 15th with Boston native Donna Garlough author of "Your Home, Your Style." In October, another collaboration with top fashion and travel bloggers from across the mommyverse will descend upon the center to create a truly interactive shopping experience with vast digital reach, tentatively set for October 13th.
About Manchester Designer Outlets
Manchester Designer Outlets (MDO) was one of the first designer outlet centers in the U.S. Ben and Lana Hauben developed the center, which opened in 1984. Today MDO features more than 30 iconic brands such as the Kate Spade Outlet, Armani Outlet, Brooks Brothers Factory Store, the Eileen Fisher Company Store, the Tumi Outlet, and Theory Outlet to name a few. MDO is just a few hours drive from NYC, Northern New Jersey, and Boston, and Connecticut accessible to a trade area of more than 14 million consumers. The center's many factory outlet stores and eateries are woven into the picturesque townscape of Manchester Center, Vermont offering visitors a serene setting to shop, eat, relax, and unwind.