Readers of Marie Claire plumb the magazine’s pages, looking for new things to discover. The glossy publication hopes its Next Big Thing concept shop at 120 Wooster Street in Manhattan’s SoHo, inspires consumers to purchase the products as well.
“We want to create a conversation with people whose intellectual currency is knowing about the next big thing,” said publisher Nancy Berger.
The pop-up shop, a partnership between Marie Claire and MasterCard, operates through Oct. 12. Participants such as Neiman Marcus, b8ta and Clarins, among others, offer the latest innovations in style, beauty, entertainment, technology and wellness.
“This is a conversation we’ve been having at the magazine for a couple years under the Next Big Thing umbrella,” said Berger. “Everything pointed to this moment to create something that would have longevity and grow the concept. We want consumers to be able to touch, feel, shop and experience.”
The pop-up is divided into three zones that mirror sections of Marie Claire: @Work, which gives readers the 411 on careers, style and success; @Play, a guide to going out, staying in and getting away, and @Peak, a wellness resource that helps readers perform at the top of their game. A Next Big Thing six-page editorial section in the October issue features technology and products from the pop-up.
“The Marie Claire reader is supercurious about technology and innovation and what is the next big thing,” said editor in chief Anne Fulenwider. “She’s also superbusy. In the October issue and pop-up shop, we’re offering things that can help you hack your busy life. The busy woman loves technology. It’s the story of our age.”
Neiman Marcus apparel, accessories and activewear has a presence in all three zones. Stylists offer advice and tips for creating designer looks.
A Sunglass Memory Mirror shows side-by-side comparisons in ultrahigh definition video that can then be shared on social media. Neiman’s ChargeItSpot lets customers shop while charging their mobile devices in a locked charging station.
Oak Labs’ smart mirrors in dressing rooms suggest accessories to complete outfits. Beauty fans can appreciate Clarins’ Sensor Mirror Pro virtual skin-care mirror by Memomi, which recommends targeted products. San Francisco-based b8ta offers a mix of apparel, accessories, activewear and gadgets.
Cashless transactions are enabled by MasterCard, and interactive shoppable storefront windows round out the next-gen retail experience.
“This is bringing our pages to life,” Fulenwider said. “I’m excited to bring a new experience to readers.”
At night, the Next Big Thing is transformed into an event space, offering such pursuits as meditation classes and nail art. Fulenwider ticked off other disparate and quirky possibilities, saying, “You can get your head shot photo taken for LinkedIn and have coffee artists create your portrait in cappuccino foam.”
Berger said the Next Big Thing could have legs. “While we want to be in a key area where the real influencers are, there’s an opportunity to take it beyond New York,” she said. “We’re looking to attract women who want to know what is the next big thing. That’s true in all aspects of their lives. It’s very contextual and meaningful to women.”