Museum Bookshop

Design and Museum Merchandising: attention to the right compromise

When updating your selection of museum merchandising, flexibility should be a top priority to keep pace with the times and attract a different audience. However, this is not a recipe for everyone, as you will have to adapt your strategy according to the individual exhibition or even the event.

For example, if you are hosting an interactive visual science exhibition, you could think of gadgets aimed at young people and children, specifically promoting them, to emphasise the experiential nature of the event and attract that audience. Or, if you want to advertise a temporary collection of a prominent design personality, you can launch into the most original choice of merchandising.

Ultimately, it is important to adapt the merchandising according to the identity of the museum, the target audience and the specific event. The merchandising can only be revised in part from time to time, while retaining the basic elements that are appreciated by visitors. Getting to know its customers is the main point to be able to shape the approach accordingly. When it comes to achieving the museum bookshop’s goal of selling gadgets in line with the cultural structure’s proposal, it is best to make sure that your marketing strategy and museum bookshop displays reflect the audience of the exhibitions you are currently exhibiting in the museum.

When you want to do your best to increase the offer and enter the list of the most beautiful museum bookshops, the temptation to invest exclusively in design merchandising could definitely take over, often leading to exaggeration in order to stand out. This is highly understandable, as with so much competition, it is essential to continually adapt the museum bookshop and marketing strategy to remain relevant.

However, as is the case with many business strategies, it is important not to get caught up in the desire to emerge at all costs, rather investing in high quality products that can best represent the museum.

You can definitely find an excellent compromise between design objects, which would risk not being understood, and the classic postcards that are then irreparably forgotten at the bottom of the bag. The best way is to be guided in your choice by an expert supplier, who has gained experience in this field and is familiar with its peculiarities and evolutionary trends.

It is important to note that contemporary visitors claim to find content published by other consumers more honest than brand content. The same is also true in the case of institutions often perceived as positive or neutral by users. In fact, it is likely that in order to attract visitors, more and more reference should be made to those perceived as authoritative in a given sector. So, rather than going too far in buying extreme design merchandise, which would then risk being unsold, it is better to focus on recognised web and social personalities in the design world and let them help with merchandising sales. Visitors are much more likely to visit a museum if it has been advertised by someone they feel is important to their community, such as an influencer or a public figure in the art world. Inviting these personalities is a great way to increase the sales of your museum bookshops.

Similarly, an optimal strategy to promote the museum bookshop’s additional services is to get a publication in a blog or trade magazine. For any museum looking to convert potential visitors into customers who might become engaged again, the key is to reach publications or people who share museum values – in this case those of design or art – and publish content related to the topic of the exhibitions. In this way, information about the museum reaches the eyes and ears of those who already have an interest in the topics on display in the museum and can therefore be found in museum bookshops.