Paulette Kirk Kasmer opened Polka Dot Parlor to encourage women of all ages to explore their sense of fashion in a fun supportive environment. Between the steady rotation of new merchandise and Paulette’s eye for curating the perfect outfit, customers walk out of her shop with a fresh look and a spring in their step.
“I love that I can help women and girls with their body image, combining fashion, positivity and laughter,” she says.
Since opening, Paulette has taken steps to build her shop’s client base while also attempting to sell her products online. As the only clothing retailer in downtown Bristol Borough, Paulette is looking for help to encourage potential shoppers to make a special trip to her store.
Establishing a memorable brand
Realizing how challenging those first months in business can be for retailers, the marketing team from Deluxe outlined a plan to trigger repeat visits to the shop, while also boosting Polka Dot Parlor’s brand to accelerate word of mouth. Everything would need to come together to help Paulette capitalize on the retail industry’s busiest season – the holidays.
After an initial call with Paulette, the Deluxe team quickly went to work on strengthening Polka Dot Parlor’s visual brand – both inside the shop and online.
Designing a new logo
Polka Dot Parlor’s original logo was steeped in Paulette’s whimsical personality as well as her love for cats. While the design expressed the fun spirit of the shop, its many colors and design elements felt crowded and failed to communicate the boutique’s brand.
Polka Dot Parlor logo: before
Polka Dot Parlor logo: after
The new logo aligns with the Parlor’s identity. The simplified format also ensure the logo looks great in all formats, whether it’s printed on a big sign, or a tiny business card.
Extending the brand to print marketing
With a new logo in hand, it was time apply it across multiple customer touchpoints to unify and strengthen the shop’s brand, including professional business cards and postcards.
Deluxe also developed custom packaging to turn a Polka Dot Parlor purchase into a walking billboard.
“My new packaging makes my store and all my clients stand out,” says Kasmer.
Extending the brand online
Shortly after launching her business, Paulette hired a web designer to build an eCommerce website to sell products. But after several months, Polka Dot Parlor struggled to attract business online, and had yet to make one sale. The web team at Deluxe suggested a different route, and proceeded to design a site geared toward storytelling to prompt store visits and boost social and email followers.
Old website did not mirror Polka Dot Parlor’s brand
New website captures the personality of the shop
New website showcases the owner’s personal style and welcoming vibe
New website features the bold and brave looks one will find at the shop
Launching an email marketing strategy
Implementing an email program is one of the most cost-effective marketing strategies for any small business looking to generate repeat business. Deluxe encouraged Paulette to build an email list, simply by placing a notebook at their register where customers could sign up for email updates. Within a month, Polka Dot Parlor collected nearly 100 email addresses – an adequate volume to launch the shop’s first email featuring a downtown sale event.
Deluxe also helped Paulette plan her email strategy for the entire year, coordinating the promotions with in-store sale events and window merchandising strategy.
Building a social media content strategy
In order to round out Polka Dot Parlor’s digital strategy, the Deluxe team coached Paulette on Facebook and Instagram best practices. They also helped her shift from using social media like a person to using it like a brand. The before-and after images below also highlight the impact new branded graphics made on the shop’s page.
Facebook page: before
Facebook page: after
More foot traffic translates to record sales
As Paulette approaches her shop’s one-year anniversary, she is thrilled to see how the new branding is attracting more customers and encouraging repeat visits. The shop has experienced record sales days and is well-poised for the upcoming rush of the holiday season.
“I am getting more and more new and returning customers. My new brand really helps my store stand out and is the icing on the cake that makes me feel I am a true boutique for the unique,” she says.
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