- Philadelphia-based deli foods brand Dietz & Watson is launching a pop-up store dubbed "Delishop" to showcase its premium meats and cheeses and sell a line of branded clothing and merchandise, according to a company press release shared with Marketing Dive.
- The Delishop, a collaboration with agency Red Tettemer O'Connell + Partners, features "Instagram-worthy photo ops," a bodega, a backyard experience and art installations. Along with prepackaged foods, the merchandise will include "Hot Dog Life" t-shirts, custom hot dog bathing suits, Dietz Nuts boxers and vintage lunch boxes. Items will also be available on the company's website under Dietz Gear.
- The shop will run from May 1 to July 28 on Philadelphia's South Street. Special events include an appearance on May 4 by Philadelphia Flyers mascot Gritty and family nights featuring face painting, magic tricks, music and giveaways. The 80-year-old food company is also partnering with local delis and brewers on select nights.
The opening of Delishop is another step in the development of Dietz & Watson beyond a traditional deli counter brand. The combination of a pop-up shop and branded merchandise allows the brand to deliver the type of experiences and social media-ready purchases favored by millennials. Plus, the brand is undertaking the effort in an authentic way that's true to the brand's Philadelphia roots, with its focus on local delis and the popular, memeable mascot Gritty.
Dietz & Watson joins a crowd of brands putting its name on merchandise outside its core business to expand brand exposure and add revenue streams. Chobani recently introduced a children's clothing line in support of its Gimmies Greek yogurt kids' snacks, while Dunkin' last month partnered with footwear company Saucony for the second time on a branded running shoe. These branded merch drops are often limited edition and sell out quickly, as Arby's found when its sandwich-inspired subscription box from January sold out in under an hour.
The key to these merchandise-focused campaigns seems to be striking an authentic connection between the brand and the product. Dietz & Watson has that in mind with its Dietz Nuts boxers, which are an extension of the brand's Super Bowl ad that promoted its new sausage bite product. The 30-second spot starred "The Office" actor-comedian Craig Robinson and toyed with innuendos surrounding the product's name.
Meanwhile, as the grocery industry develops home delivery options and shoppers spend less time at brick and mortar stores, food brands like Dietz & Watson need to find creative ways to remain top of mind for consumers. The pop-up shop could help it do that in the Philadelphia market, with the potential to extend its reach through online merch sales and social media content. The brand has also made in-roads with online sales, securing distribution through Amazon Fresh, Amazon Prime and its own website, which will also house the branded merchandise.