Macy’s plans to make its stores more experiential by adding narrative-driven concept shops to 36 of its stores around the country. The Story shops are the result of the retailer’s collaboration with retail entrepreneur Rachel Schectman, hired last year as brand experience officer.
Shechtman calls Story a cohesive storytelling retail model that takes the point of view of a magazine, changes like a gallery and sells things like a store. Every four to eight weeks, the space will reinvent itself – from the design of the store to the merchandise – to highlight a new theme. Story is about experience, engagement, and collaboration and brand partnerships, Shechtman says.
The Story at Macy’s boutiques measure about 1,500 square feet each, or some 55,000 square feet of main-floor retail space across the nearly 40 stores. At the Herald Square flagship, in New York City, Story at Macy’s comprises about 7,500 square feet of continuous retail space on the main floor and mezzanine levels.
Opening with an inaugural theme titled Color, Story at Macy’s invites customers to explore and experience color through a rainbow of curated products and about 300 color-inspired events.
“The discovery-led, narrative experience of Story gives new customers a fresh reason to visit our stores and gives the current Macy’s customer even more reason to come back again and again throughout the year,” said Jeff Gennette, Macy’s, Inc. chairman & CEO, in a press release.
In the lead-up to launch, Macy’s hired nearly 300 dedicated Story employees for training in an experiential-retail program that immerses them in building fixtures, customer engagement, event production and more.
“The Story at Macy’s experience feels a lot like a real-life version of scrolling through Instagram”
“The Story at Macy’s experience feels a lot like a real-life version of scrolling through Instagram” Shechtman said. "You discover things you weren’t looking for but are inspired by all the fun finds — the second you see it, you need it! We aspire to create that feeling with the breadth of the narrative-driven merchandise edit we are bringing to life with the launch of Story at Macy’s across the country."
For the Color theme, Macy’s brings its feed to life through a curated assortment of merchandise for men, women, children and the home. About 70 small businesses offering some 400 products come together to make the experience a gifting destination. Among them are Crayola, Levi’s Kids and Mac Cosmetics.
By Brannon Boswell