The retail industry is not really like any other. The speed at which it travels, soaring on equal parts innovation, intuition and inspiration, is breakneck. And those who ply the trade are often the first to attest to the fact. Retailers understand better than most the need to perform at consistently high levels while constantly shifting and adapting to changing market conditions, macroeconomic factors and evolving consumer behaviour. And they’re acutely aware of the pressures that result from their need to also accurately discern the current landscape while identifying trends before they impact their businesses. It’s a daunting task, to say the least, and one that seems to become increasingly more challenging and complex as we move forward. They are challenges and complexities that Sean Tarry, Editor-in-Chief of Retail Insider the magazine, says are resulting in a range of results for businesses across the country. And, he adds, they represent the catalyst for the creation of the forthcoming digital publication.
“Canadian retailers are incredibly resilient,” he says. “They’re also representative of some of the savviest, most innovative and hardworking people that you’re going to come across in any industry or walk of life. With the launch of Retail Insider the magazine, we want to highlight everything that’s great about Canadian retail. However, we approach this publication with a strong commitment to helping retailers navigate a landscape that’s changing faster than ever before amid an accelerated digitization of the world around us and an ever-evolving consumer. In order to do this properly, we assume it as our obligation to dig deep into both the issues impacting the industry today, as well as those that loom on the horizon, accurately identifying the challenges and opportunities that might arise as a result or consequence, and mapping out the actions that can be taken to address them. It’s a really exciting venture for us, and one that we’re approaching with focus and an accountability to serve the industry with the most reliable, trustworthy and relevant content possible.”
Analysis of trends
Retail Insider the magazine joins a growing list of offering that’s provided by Retail Insider Media Ltd., which includes its renowned website that features daily retail news from across the country and its podcasts that regularly present conversations between Retail Insider Media Ltd.’s Founder and President/CEO, Craig Patterson, and some of the Canadian industry’s most prominent retail leaders. It’s a product that helps to broaden the range of coverage that the fast-growing media purveyor is responsible for. And, according to Tarry, in doing so, the magazine also provides the perfect complement to the content that has established Retail Insider Media Ltd. as a brand and the elements of production that have laid the foundation of its growth.
“Retail-Insider.com has, for quite some time now, been known throughout the industry as the de facto source for current and breaking retail news and information,” he asserts. “There’s no other source like it when it comes to getting ahead of retail news before it happens. With the magazine, I want to complement the website offering with the same strategy and execution, but with a longer view that focuses on the trends and forcing functions impacting the industry today and into the future. The content is going to be extremely research-driven, featuring analysis and prognostication from the industry’s leading thinkers and top innovators in order to identify the path forward for the industry. The magazine’s going to provide the Retail Insider community with another lens through which to view the industry, rounding out the brand’s already excellent content.”
Breadth of content
Tarry enthusiastically goes on to explain that he and the Retail Insider team will not be shying away from any topic or area of interest as long as there is a potential impact on retailers, their consumers and the markets they operate in. He cites the continued digitization of the industry and the development of supporting technologies, evolving consumer behaviour and preferences, the continued rise of ecommerce, the shop local movement amid enhanced globalization, and the increasing importance of environmental, social and governance issues as just a few of those that will be intensely explored and written about within the first few editions of the magazine. It’s a promised breadth of coverage that Dustin Fuhs, Co-Editor-in-Chief of Retail-Insider.com and Associate Publisher of Retail Insider the magazine, says is impressive and instantly sets the publication apart from anything else in the market.
“There’s literally nothing else like the magazine anywhere,” he says. “The way Sean has developed this product, based on his years of experience and expertise, is going to translate into a comprehensive and holistic view of the industry for our readers. Every type and format of retailer, operating in just about every category, will be engaged by content related to every aspect of the retail business, including supply chain, information technology, human resources, loss prevention, customer service and in-store operations, merchandising, ecommerce, and on and on. Essentially, if you’re operating within retail, you’re going to need every edition of this magazine as a resource and reference for your entire team. It’s going to serve as a pulse for the industry concerning the current state of affairs while also providing a view into shifts and trends that will pose impact down the line.”
Experience and expertise
As Fuhs points out, Tarry possesses a wealth of experience within both the publishing and retail industries, having served for 11 years as Editor of Publications at Retail Council of Canada and Editor-in-Chief of its now defunct Canadian Retailer magazine. His tenure at Canada’s national retail trade organization provided him with invaluable exposure to the industry, equipping him with an intimate understanding and appreciation for the complexities of the retail business. Beyond the acumen he’s cultivated, however, Fuhs suggests that it’s Tarry’s nose for the story and participation in its development from a journalistic perspective that sets him apart from most other editors.
“Throughout his career reporting on and writing about Canadian retail, Sean’s developed a real sense for the information that matters most to those within the industry,” he says. “He’s managed to cultivate relationships with some of retail’s top leaders and innovators, allowing him to engage in significant conversations and remain in the know with respect to all of the latest shifts and trends that are happening. And, he’s also incredibly involved in every aspect of the publication, from managing advertising leads and developing marketing materials to providing art direction and overseeing production. What’s most impressive, however, is the way he works with all stakeholders involved to develop deep, meaningful content that uncovers valuable insights and starts conversations. We’re looking forward to launching our first issue and working to grow the publication every step of the way.”
The advancement of retail in Canada
The excitement surrounding the launch of the first issue of Retail Insider the magazine is palpable when speaking with the team. It’s excitement that Tarry says is borne out of Retail Insider Media Ltd.’s inherent desire and commitment to providing the information, data and tools that retailers within the industry crave in order to benchmark against competitors, assess and explore best practices being deployed throughout the industry and improve efficiencies across the entire organization. He’s eager to continue following, documenting and contributing toward the advancement of retail in Canada, describing the magazine as a cog in the giant wheel that keeps the industry turning, forever moving forward. And, in his estimation, this may just be the perfect time to introduce this product to the Retail Insider Media Ltd. community.
“Retail is such an incredible industry to be a part of. Anyone who’s ever experienced it is aware of the pace at which it moves, the innovation that’s required to keep up and the intelligence and savvy that entrepreneurs and business leaders need to demonstrate on a daily basis in order to consistently enjoy positive outcomes. It’s an environment that’s challenging at the best of times. And, given the circumstances that have impacted operations over the course of the past couple years, merchants and their teams across the country, from small business owners and operators to national brands, need all of the support that they can get. The Canadian retail community is a unique one, known for its strength and creativity in the face of adversity. Retail Insider the magazine is going to provide a tremendous platform to reflect and celebrate everything that makes the industry in Canada so special, while also providing meaningful content that will help them drive continued growth and success.”