Will ‘hat-heads’ go for limited edition drops at Lids?
Hat retailer Lids has launched a new store concept called Lids Hat Drop, which will focus on giving customers access to exclusive new products on a weekly basis.
The store, opened in Jamaica, Queens, New York City, is a brick-and-mortar adaptation of the brand’s LidsHatDrop.com website which launched earlier this year, according to a press release. At 11:00 a.m. each Friday, the store will make exclusive new releases available only in-store until noon when the collection goes on sale on the e-commerce website. The collections will be created in collaboration with athletes, celebrities and designers.
“Drops” of limited-edition products have become popular in other collector-driven areas of fashion, most notably sneakers. Nike, for instance, offers streetwear fans and collectors high-demand sneakers on the first day of their release through the brand’s SNKRS app, and announces and hypes the products on social media. New products move so fast that the app only allows users to keep them in their online carts briefly before they are released for others to purchase.
Retailers in other verticals have experimented with similar drops. Luxury brands Givenchy, Moncler, Balenciaga, Fendi and Burberry all began running drop-style promotions a few years ago, resulting in large crowds for their physical stores. And even Macy’s got in on the act at one point with a 2018 drop of an exclusive watch. Though the practice has proven popular and consistently successful in streetwear, experts have cautioned that the practice may not work in segments with less of an engaged collector market.
Lids was having a rough time early in the pandemic, when its dual reliance on physical retail and live sports made it particularly vulnerable to disruption from shutdowns, according to Axios. The brand was forced to lay off almost all of its 8,500-person workforce nationwide.
One year later, though, the brand was back in expansion mode, launching localized store-within-a-store concepts in DSW and The Shoe Company. In doing so it added 70 stores to its 1,200 existing North American locations, according to Yahoo.
- Lids Unveils Brick & Mortar Retail Concept of Its Successful “Lids Hat Drop” Ecommerce Platform – PR NewsWire
- How Do I Get Nike’s Newest Sneaker Releases? – Nike
- Will drops yield more fashion buzz or busts – RetailWire
- A crisis for big retail in Charlotte awaits on the other side of a shutdown – Axios
- Lids Will Soon Have Shops Inside DSW and The Shoe Company Stores Throughout Canada – Yahoo!
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: Do you see similar concepts to Lids Hat Drop being operated successfully in other areas of retail? What are the keys to making this type of limited-edition strategy successful?