Eaters collective dining experience

Just have it

It is now a widely accepted trend that people are spending more of their disposable income on doing things rather than having things. Whether it’s some spiritual awakening or simply the urge to look good on Instagram that’s driving this trend we don’t know, but the basic premise of experience over stuff is quite clearly the direction people are moving in.

It is now a widely accepted trend that people are spending more of their disposable income on doing things rather than having things. Whether it’s some spiritual awakening or simply the urge to look good on Instagram that’s driving this trend we don’t know, but the basic premise of experience over stuff is quite clearly the direction people are moving in.

Now this leaves me in something of a quandary. Mash was borne from staffing the experiential industry, and in line with this human thirst to do more, we have seen the industry grow, adapt and improve – and of course we benefit from that. No longer do our staff simply stand in cold car parks thrusting samples into distracted shoppers’ hands. Together, we’ve learned that engaging consumers and involving them in the brand experience is a much better way to get their attention and buy-in. All good so far.

But another important element of our business is our retail department. And let’s face it, their entire business model is based on people wanting to have stuff. So not only are stores competing with online retailers, they also have to deal with people who prefer to spend their money on brunch, concerts, or various sporting activities and so on.

So how can my conscience sit easy with my retail clients while I applaud the experience trend for my experiential clients?

Well, I look to our largest retail client for redemption, because frankly Nike has been telling people to “just do it” for 30 years. They recognised earlier than most that doing things puts people into a positive state of mind. This positive attitude leads people to live their life more fully – and a full life demands more stuff.

Who goes to a festival without adhering to the strict attire rules of posh wellies and designer sunglasses? Who goes for a run without a method of recording speed, distance and calories burned? And where did the huge upsurge in avocado sales come from if it wasn’t the thousands of independent cafes offering avo on toast for brunch?

The fact is that having stuff and doing stuff can sit alongside each other nicely as long as both follow the aim of putting people into a positive state of mind. If the retail industry can adapt to support people in their quest for experience – both in the products they sell and the shopping environment they create – then they have nothing to fear from people’s changing priorities. And as engaging and personable staff are an important aspect of this development, it seems to solve my personal quandary too.

Now where did I put that brushed microfibre drag resistant tri-suit…

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MASH Staffing