If you haven’t heard, we’ve popped up in downtown Raleigh! We’ve been looking for the opportunity to connect with our members and the local community in a genuine and meaningful way, so we’ve opened up a Pop-Up Shop until December 31, 2017. I’m Mandy, the Pop-Up store manager, and I’m thrilled to share how we decided to set up the shop and what to expect when you stop by.
We didn’t want the layout of our shop to be like a typical cell phone store because we aren’t a typical cell phone company. That’s why we set our shop up like a home. With a “living room”, “kitchen”, and “kid’s corner” we hope members and visitors will feel at home in our space.
We really want everyone to feel apart of our family and make connections with us, and there’s no better place to do that than in our living room, which is the first thing that you see when you enter our space. Across from the “living room”, is our “kitchen” where we have local coffee and snacks available for people to sit and enjoy with us. Around the corner is our kid’s area. This space is adorned with a large chalkboard wall, bean bag chairs, a life-sized Connect Four game, and baskets of books supplied by Read With Me, a local children’s bookstore. We support families and we wanted our retail space to be able to accommodate the entire family. Adults and kids alike have loved the chalk wall where they leave us drawings and messages that make our day.
We know getting help for your phone can be an intimidating and anxiety-ridden process. That’s why we offer support from the shop. Members are able to make an appointment to come sit with us and clear up any technical issues that they may be experiencing.
Some members have come in to learn more about their phone and the variety of functions on smartphones these days. We have seen many people who want to see all the phones available in person before making that important decision of which phone to purchase. We’re also able to sit down with members and help them activate their new phone.
My favorite part of being in the Pop-Up Shop on a daily basis is by far the people that we get to connect with. Never before have we been able to sit down across from a member and talk to them without a screen in between us. We get to talk about things like what they use their phones for, data usage, and what’s important to them in a phone. More importantly, we get to really know our members better. I have heard stories of children, grandchildren, travel plans, monthly savings, and favorite apps. I have met our members from not only North Carolina, but Virginia, Florida, Indiana, Utah, and California. I never enjoy seeing a member having an issue with their phone, but I love seeing their smiles and satisfaction after their issue is resolved or they have learned something new.
One of my favorite conversations was with a member who reached out late one Friday afternoon seeing if she could come into the shop to purchase and activate a phone. She lived close to Greensboro, so we knew that she would not make it to the shop before we closed.
We decided to keep our doors open until she was able to get to the shop for her new phone.
After speaking with her further during her time in the shop, we found out she needed a new phone because she was taking her daughter on a trip the next day. It was her daughter’s birthday and they were doing a mud run together with a group of her daughter’s friends.
It was so heartwarming to see a mother and daughter spending time together and doing something new and adventurous in lieu of a ‘typical’ birthday party. I bet that is an experience that both of them will remember forever and have many memories to look back on from that day. Although Republic Wireless was a small piece of that day, it’s exciting to see how we can be a part of those stories and moments in people’s lives.
It is very rare that you get to sit down with an engineer of the Republic team to learn more about the Republic app or speak directly with one of our graphic designers on taking better pictures. We wanted the opportunity to connect with our members while helping them learn, while at the same time learning ourselves. This is how the idea of workshops came to be. We’ve had several workshops in the Pop-Up Shop that have been hosted by our own Republic employees. Some of the topics covered have been Phone Photography, Which Republic Phone is Right for You, and Secrets of the RW App.
All in all, we have been incredibly lucky to have such support from our members and the downtown Raleigh community. I look forward to days ahead and generating more connections with people – from introducing people to Republic for the first time or with the members who have been with us since the Defy XT. Connecting people is what we’re about and now with our Pop-Up Shop, this is another outlet that we can connect with you.
If you are in the Raleigh area, please come stop by and say “Hi,” we’d love to meet you and hear your Republic story!
What do you think about our space, let us know in the comments!