August 17, 2009

Robot Love: 27th & Lyndale

Filed under: Meeting Marketers — Robert John Ed @ 10:18 pm

Continuing the small business details, time to point out a small, peculiar art crafts store on Lyndale.  Note that “peculiar” is congruent with “gangster.”

Robot Love is a design store, or at least that’s what it calls itself.  It has a lot of limited edition art paraphernalia.  Really a lot of toys actually.  Toys are good, they keep you young.  I don’t really like their website.  It’s just an online store.  A lot of SEO types will probably tell you to optimize your site to sell on, I think that’s true for the most part when you scale nationally.  But not this time.

This website would be far better off by telling people why the store started and why it has such a fetish for particular types of art.  When you walk into the actual store, there’s a real vibe.  It’s diggable.  I spoke with the owner about business (apparently it’s slow, but they are hanging in there) for 15 minutes or so, really nice guy.  The thing is, the website doesn’t really tell the same story.  The website says “buy our wares.”  Instead of saying “Robot Love is all about the limited and astronomically badass sets of artistically rendered toys, clothing, books and anything else that holds your sensibilities ransom for a handsome stipend of rock.  Yeah you can buy stuff on here, but we’d rather meet you in person, come in and kick it some.”  Because that’s what the store is when you walk in.  It’s cool.  This website is not.  They’d be better off using a basic static page with a link to the store on the back end.  You can integrate both the brand position and a good store, but that’s not the point.

The message is more important here than optimizing the traffic.  The web, for this company, is really a chance to build the brand, not sell a few keychains.  I digress.

Robot Love is different, and worth taking a look at.   Yes, most people aren’t necessarily into this kind of thing (it’s not entirely something I’d expect purchase multiple pieces at) but for the people that are, it’s got what you want.  Worth a look, at least.


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