System to promote Science Museum toys

Debenhams is poised to go live with an in-store video demonstration system, initially for the Science Museum toy brand.

Provided by Wow! Stuff, which distributes the Science Museum, Mensa and Natural History Museum toy ranges, the system displays product videos that are about one minute long.

Wow! Stuff managing director Richard North explained that the system builds on the “pester power” of children that many retailers rely on to sell toys.

The distributor is already using TVs that play videos stored on a flash memory card in stores. However, North said that the new web-enabled TV system will take the concept to the next level.

“If it is raining, we can change what’s on the screen in real-time and we can use different content in different stores,” he said. “Also, we have set up a network of merchandisers, so with one phone call, we can find out what stock is at what store on any given day.”

The original video demonstration concept increased sales by 300 per cent. North said that the networked video system has proved even more successful at the pilot stage.

“The trials have transformed sales. It’s gone from a 300 per cent uplift to 860 per cent uplift with weather- and stock-specific videos. Over the three months to Christmas, the difference we can make to sales is frightening.”

Touchscreens allow the system to record which videos are most requested by customers. The system will also allow customers to record if a product featured in a video being displayed is not available on shelf.

The company has spent the past four months getting broadband internet links in place at Debenhams stores.