Woman walking with shopping bag Woman walking with shopping bag

How can footwear brands compete in a saturated market?

The global footwear market is a $200+ billion-dollar industry that has grown at a rapid pace in the past few years and continues to flourish. Rising demand across all age groups is a key factor in driving the industry, and with celebrities like Kanye West, Jessica Simpson, Rihanna and Sarah Jessica Parker dipping their toes in shoe design, it’s no wonder that its popularity continues to increase.

Whether consumers are searching for athleisure, casual, fashion, or work-inspired footwear, brick-and-mortar stores remain their preferred shopping destination. Shoppers enjoy the experience of trying on shoes, assessing the fit, size and quality on the spot and ultimately taking home their purchases without a wait.

With over 120 footwear brands in the Brookfield Properties portfolio, our knowledge of the shoe industry is robust and our portfolio continues to grow. We understand the footwear industry's competitive nature and the need for brands to stand out in a crowd.

So how can footwear brands compete in a saturated market? 

Understanding that brick-and-mortar is the preferred shopping avenue, the key to success is not only building relationships with consumers, but also creating a physical experience for them that will be meaningful and memorable. When it comes to shoe shopping, it’s not just the laces – it’s the places.

At Brookfield Properties, we use innovative solutions to help our tenants meet shoppers in new and memorable ways. Our pop-up fixtures have been successful in bringing brands to life and are an increasingly popular connection point for our brands and their customers. Not only do they create unique customer experiences and build brand awareness, but they ultimately build brand loyalty as well.  

Here’s a look at some ways we brought footwear brands to life and captured the attention of consumers in unique ways:

M. Gemi

Luxury Italian shoe retailer, M. Gemi, began as an e-commerce retailer and was looking for a way to meet their consumers face-to-face in a memorable way.

M. Gemi toured the country in a converted vintage gelato truck, finding a temporary home at a number of our retail centers including Tysons Galleria in Virginia, and Water Tower Place and Oakbrook Center in Illinois.

M. Gemi is a handmade Italian shoe brand that works with specialty, family-owned workshops in Italy to design and craft luxury-quality shoes at uncommonly good prices. Shoppers who visited the pop-up truck were able to try on a selection of signature shoes for men and women, ranging from sneakers to flats to heels. 

M. Gemi Truck

Saint Pablo by Kanye West

Kanye West's "Saint Pablo" pop-ups, hosted at six properties, created an experience for millennial shoppers that went beyond a traditional in-line store. The three-day initiative showcased The Life of Pablo merchandise as if they were pieces of artwork in a gallery. More than 15,000 shoppers visited the installations at Northbrook Court in Chicago, Stonebriar Centre in Dallas, Fashion Show in Las Vegas, Miami Design District in Miami and Clackamas Town Center in Portland.  

Thanks to a strong partnership with this retailer, we were able to execute a highly trafficked and newsworthy pop-up. The team expertly handled everything from the contract to installation to long lines of fans to dismantling, all within the span of a few days–proving their ability to pull off a large-scale experience, successfully.

Saint Pablo shopping bag

When it comes to footwear, creating a physical space for your customers is key to your growth. Now's the time to create an in-store experience that will give your audience the opportunity to touch, feel, and fall in love with your products.

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