Several people mentioned to me that Mayfair Mall was handing out flyers on Saturday during Christmas in the Ward in the Historic Third Ward. And, yes, before you complain, my wife owns a store, Lela, in that neighborhood. Regardless, I found it interesting that a mall would come Downtown to lure shoppers to its destination.
I grew up about a mile from Mayfair, but I've lived Downtown for so long that I rarely get there anymore. Plus, when I do shop malls, I'm more of an outdoor mall guy so I'd rather go to Old Orchard or Bayshore.
I reached out to Mayfair to see what they were up to. Kate Ochowicz, marketing manager at the mall, responded to my e-mail saying "as a part of our marketing efforts this year, we sent street teamers out to a variety of community holiday events including the Holiday Lights Festival, the holiday parade and Christmas in the Ward."
"Our intention," Ochowicz continued, "was to interact with people who were out and about and in the holiday spirit to remind them of the fun and exciting things that Mayfair had planned for the season."
So, was the mall trying to lure people away from the shops and boutiques in the Third Ward?
"It was certainly never our intention to lure shoppers away from local businesses, though looking back we do see how it could be perceived that way," said Ochowicz.
When neighborhood store owners and residents starting noticing the Mayfair street teams this past weekend, I saw several "get out of our neighborhood" type Facebook messages, and one has to wonder if a local store was handing out flyers inside Mayfair whether they'd be welcomed or kicked out.
Yet, I love creative marketing and street teams do work. So, I'm not knocking the tactic. And, the mere fact that Mayfair targeted Downtown and the Third Ward says that both neighborhoods are doing something right. Downtown and local businesses are huge drivers in our economy and Mayfair says it understand this.
"We understand that local businesses are a vital part of our community's economy and Mayfair supports dozens of local merchants as part of our retail mix. Moving forward, we will focus our street team efforts on more general holiday event opportunities, rather than events supported by competing business districts."
Nancy O'Keefe, executive director of the Historic Third Ward Association and BID No. 2, said she talked to the Mayfair street teams on Saturday and even asked one individual why they were targeting the Third Ward. The street team member just said that they "were hired to do this."
Mayfair seems to be done with its guerilla marketing tactics in "competing business district," but I'd like your thought on the subject. Do you have a problem with malls marketing to shoppers in our local shopping districts? Use the talkbacks to react. And, happy shopping wherever and however you choose to do it.
I like Mayfair and I like the 3rd Ward. Would guerilla style marketing by under-age kids make me choose one over the other? I think not.
bunch of cry babies. if the local stores are superior, then they'll prevail. no big deal here
i have not shopped at mayfair in years. i do all of my shopping downtown at boston store, grand avenue and other downtown stores. i believe in supporting downtown businesses including theatres and resturants. now if the marcus theatres would, finally, build their proposed movie theatre complex on water street downtown. it is badly needed. and take more people away from mayfair-- the movie theatre.
Jeff | Dec. 9, 2010 at 1:23 p.m. (report)
If downtown had a thriving retail market (indie boutiques excluded), Mayfair wouldn't feel it could muscle in on the territory. Jeff Sherman goes to Bayshore and Old Orchard? Those malls have the stores downtown should have but doesn't.
Show me the other 5 Talkbacks
10 comments about this article.
Post your comment/review now
Disclaimer: Please note that Facebook comments are posted through Facebook and cannot be approved, edited or declined by OnMilwaukee.com. The opinions expressed in Facebook comments do not necessarily reflect those of OnMilwaukee.com or its staff.
Recent Articles & Blogs by Jeff Sherman
Published Jan. 1, 2017
To begin 2017, I've compiled a few thoughts, inspirational nuggets and observations that may help power you to help make this the best year yet. It's a list I've kept for a while and refer to often. Figured it was time to share it.
Published Dec. 8, 2016
Milwaukee Downtown, the business improvement district in Downtown Milwaukee, is selling its annual ornament. This year, it's the Wisconsin Club, 900 W. Wisconsin Ave.
Published Nov. 22, 2016
It's that festive time of the year. Christmas and holiday parties seemingly every night. I love it. But, it's tough not to eat and drink more than usual. This list helps you get a better focus on which drinks contain the highest alcohol-to-calorie ratio.
Published Nov. 17, 2016
Cole Swindell brings his "Down Home" tour to Milwaukee on Dec. 3. The tour is part of the FM 106.1 Country Christmas Triple Play at The Rave and features Jon Langston. To prepare for his visit, Swindell used OnMilwaukee to find five restaurants he wants to hit while here.
Published Nov. 17, 2016
The magic of Christmas and the holiday season begins tonight, Thursday, Nov. 17, in Downtown Milwaukee. The City's Christmas tree is lit and more than 500,000 lights will illuminate the city at the Milwaukee Holiday Lights Kick-Off Extravaganza.
Published Nov. 14, 2016
From the good news department comes this video posted by the Milwaukee County Transit System on Facebook this past weekend.
Published Nov. 7, 2016
It's sprouted quickly in the Village of Shorewood, growing from an old Verizon store's ashes into a well-designed, soon-to-be new restaurant that embraces the charm, scale and walkability of the neighborhood. Here's a photo gallery of The Ruckus, coming soon to Oakland Avenue.
Published Nov. 5, 2016
The Sacramento Kings were in Milwaukee Friday night before their Saturday night game against the Bucks at the BMO Harris Bradley Center. And they had some viral fun in Downtown Milwaukee.
Published Nov. 5, 2016
Country music star Keith Urban's 23-song set Friday night at the BMO Harris Bradley Center in Downtown Milwaukee was crisp, collected and just flat-out killer. Here are Jeff Sherman's five key takeaways from the show.
Published Nov. 3, 2016
Twitter's is Jeff Sherman's go-to news source. And like all content sources, it has its pitfalls and problems. Not enough quality, too much yelling - you've heard them all. So how do we make Twitter better? Here are several ideas.