NY Now, the rebranded and reformatted Gift Fair, debuts this month
By David Gill
Eight months after GLM announced the reconfiguration of the New York International Gift Fair—and three years after the trade-show company began its reorganization of the show—NY Now, the Market for Home & Lifestyle will take place this month at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center and Passenger Ship Terminal Pier 94 in New York City.
That this will be a different show from the former Gift Fair will be evident in the new layout. In its reformatting effort, GLM slimmed down the previous 10 divisions of the Gift Fair to four broad market collections for NY Now: Home, Lifestyle, Handmade and New.
The change in the show’s name is also intended as a break from the past, to underscore the identity of this show into a total resource for home and lifestyle products. Christian Falkenberg, the show’s director and GLM senior vice president, described the name NY Now as “a great umbrella brand for the market. It is an all-encompassing name that is reflective of the Fair’s 400-plus gift, home and lifestyle product categories.”
The show’s transformation is certainly geared toward motivating its retail buyer-attendees and improving the show’s experience. As GLM stated in announcing the new branding and format in January, this effort is an attempt to communicate to buyers “an imperative to participate.” And for those who do participate, the show’s reorganization is targeted at making NY Now a more attractive show to shop.
“The creation of four broad collections … and the related reorganization of the exhibit floor will better showcase the show’s diverse range of design-driven products,” Falkenberg said. “The dynamic new layout will make it easy and efficient for buyers to find a depth of resources, as well as to source complementary categories.”
Along with redesigning the show’s layout, GLM has extended NY Now’s hours of operation. This month, the show will run from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Sunday, Aug. 18, and Monday, Aug. 19, allowing buyers extra time to shop the reformatted show.
Another new feature of note is nynow365.com, the show’s image-based online product directory. According to the most recent count, the site has information about more than 27,000 products from more than 700 exhibitors at this month’s show. As of June, according to Falkenberg, “More than 25 percent of the show’s 2,800-plus exhibitors have posted product images and information to the site, and nearly 1,500 retailers have registered to use the site.”
GLM has been integrating nynow365.com with registration for NY Now. By the time the show opens this month, the site is expected to include information about more than 1,000 exhibitors and 35,000 products. More than 10,000 retailers are projected to be registered and actively using the site by the end of this year.
One aspect of the show that hasn’t changed is the slate of educational offerings on tap for this month. More than 40 seminars are on the schedule, preceded by a free NY Now webinar that will provide an online tutorial of the show’s layout and setup, along with general tips for first-time visitors. This webinar is slated for Aug. 8.
The Handmade section will include six “power hour” sessions that will cover topics such as social media, publicity, video marketing and others. In the Home section, seminars will provide information on topics such as home design trends, visual merchandising strategies and a preview of emerging colors.
The sessions in the Lifestyle section will deal with topics such as visual merchandising and directions for fashion, home and lifestyle design, along with guest appearances by authors Susan Spengen, Kathryn Petras and Jennifer S. Holland, all of whom have published books on lifestyle trends. In the New section, seminars will offer insights into technology, online marketing and social media.
The reaction to the reconfigured show has GLM in an optimistic frame of mind. “Preshow reactions have been overwhelmingly positive,” Falkenberg said. “There is an understanding of the overall benefits of reorganization and its overall positive impact for the market.”
Some of this reaction has come from GLM’s efforts in talking about all of the aspects of the new NY Now, Falkenberg said. “We’ve been communicating news of the changes to buyers for several months now, and they’re excited,” he said. “But the biggest reaction from them will come when they experience the show’s new layout and its new look. We think they’ll be really wowed with the physical changes.”
For more NY Now coverage please visit The Galleries at http://www.hfnmag.com/product-gallery/new-at-now/