The LCCC campus’ Commodore Books & More won a national window display contest, winning second place with a $300 gift card.
Thule and Case Logic, both bookbag and cases companies have an annual contest in which community colleges and universities from the United States take part in.
This year, the campus’ Commodore bookstore took part with Amanda Forney, Commodore bookstore floor coordinator deciding how the display would look.
Spreading brand awareness for back to school
Regardless of how many take part, this is a way for them to get brand awareness, said Forney discussing how the rules of the contest require the display to have Thule and Case Logic’s products. It helped spread awareness of their products at the start of the semester and would have to stay for three weeks minimum.
Those who made it possible
With 13 years of previous experience in retail, Forney had an more flexibility to make a display with the independent bookstore, compared to the “very strict” guidelines her previous corporate retail position had with their display guidelines she said.
The competition started in early August of this year, with the collaboration of Amanda and a small team from the bookstore to pull the display together. Helping make her vision of the window display vision come to life were Rachel Toth, part-time worker who has graduated, Peyton Kellick, part-time worker, Tyler Musial, student worker, and Earl Walker, part-time worker. Forney adds that along with her own vision of the layout, the four were able to add with their own little ideas and inputs working on the display.
For inspiration Forney said she looked at other display windows from multiple stores, such as clothing stores as well as scaning Pinterest.
In the span of a week and a half, Toth spent two hours on the blackboard display, as Kellick, Musial, and Walker spent an hour and a half on the rest such as the various leaves they had to set up, all working in short stants within their busy schedules, said Forney.
The team worked with what they had, as most of their display equipment is at least of eight years old. Yet, Forney said they had fun trying to find creative ways to make what they had be as good as it could be.
“It’s a passion for her,” said Ray Carbonell, technology and service manager of Commodore Books & More, adding that Forney had the time and the interest to pursue the contest when he suggested for the store to take part.
Thinking outside the box
“We had the freedom and creativity to think outside the box,” said Forney. She also adds that “It’s not enough to make a display, but a display that sells product,” regarding how it’s important to make a good impression with the display.
Showing to tell a story
Forney said her previous experience in retail helped her to “learn to be detail oriented.” This helped Forney and her team “try to tell a story.”
When all was said and done, “we were proud” said Forney. When the winners were announced, and the team found out they won second place in the country they were “really excited,” said Forney.
When it comes to the $300 gift card the Commodore Bookstore won, Carbonell said “We’ll invest the majority of the money upgrading the existing display to keep that type of display to our standards.”