Inside The RealReal’s Pop-Up Strategy with Its Associate Director of Pop-Ups

The luxury consignment start-up The RealReal is officially focused on making 2018 the year of pop-up stores, investing in in-store experiences for better customer engagement. As an online-first brand, it went brick-and-mortar last Winter in SoHo, and then expanded into it’s first pop-up store in San Francisco.

That pop-up was met with much success — the brand saw a 500 percent year-over-year increase in the number of online buyers in the area — and now The RealReal has set its sights on Las Vegas to continue its success and build brand awareness in this market.

And, the brand has tapped Anne Greenwald to execute its 2018 pop-up series. As the Associate Director of pop-ups for The RealReal, Anne knows a thing or two about what makes a great pop-up store (digital-first brands, take note!). Here’s what she had to say:

Storefront: What initially inspired the team to host the next pop-up in Las Vegas?
Anne Greenwald: We know that Forum Shops is a retail dream and that Las Vegas attracts a luxury shopper. Las Vegas gets 49 million visitors a year; so wonderful foot traffic. There are some sophisticated shoppers here. Also, this is a great forum to introduce our online business to our customers that walk through our doors at the pop-up store.

Storefront: How did you know it would be a good idea?
AG: To introduce our online business to the world, and the world all comes to Vegas. We primarily want to promote the online business, but it’s also amazing and beautiful to see the online world physically represented.

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Storefront: Take me through the entire process of pulling off this pop-up store — where’d you start? 
AG: We partnered with Lionesque based in NYC for help with construction and build out. I started by working with them and building my Pop-Up Swat team which will travel with me across the country building pop ups, running them, etc. Then I did site visits, and hired my temporary team, and trained them. I then coordinated with a designer to design the space, brought all the furniture together, then added the clothes and the products, and before we knew it, we had a store.

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Storefront: What are you hoping will be your customers’ reactions to the pop-up store? What is the metric of success?
AG: We are focused on customer experience and conversion. We want the conversation between our guests and The RealReal to be educational and meaningful.

Storefront: What lessons have you learned so far in helping put on these pop-ups? What would be your words of advice to brands?
AG: It’s a lot of work but extremely fun; the skillset needs to be all about building something, building teams, building great people, and showcasing the brand in a different way that makes people want to hang in your store all day.

Arielle Crane
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