The New Stand: Experience Retail as a Product

Photo Credit: Scott Webb

Every day, we take something for granted. It’s easy, the comfort of our daily routines lets us ignore most everything we pass by on a daily basis. It’s human.

Entrepreneurs, however, tend to be bothered by things that seem useless. Their nose for disruption is something that many are puzzled by, but fascinates many others. Corporate innovation has increasingly sought to bring the value and merits of entrepreneurship in-house, to give their own organizations the perspective shifts necessary to sustain and scale.

If you live in New York City, or have ever visited, you likely know of its network of bodegas, Growing up all around the city, they were the everyday supermarket and the late-night sanctuary. Bodegas are tucked in at the heart of neighborhoods and at the busiest traffic intersections. They’re visible and valuable space — but were they as valuable as they could be?

New Stand, a 2-year old upstart, is looking to disrupt this physical space and product, bringing desperate retailers along for the ride.

“We realized that convenience retail was ripe for reinvention,” said Deitchman. “This is part of people’s routines — and we can build a new, connected experience around a lot of data.”
In addition to standards like snacks, candy, drinks, medicines and umbrellas, New Stand also sells a curated selection of items that look more at home in an Urban Outfitters than an underground subway station, like adult coloring books, iPhone cases, and pineapple-shaped shakers and shot glasses.
Source:, “A boutique bodega is the next frontier for brand partnerships

By partnering with brands, New Stand is able to do two things:

  1. Put the product in front of the customer at unexpected times
  2. Expose the customer to the same product throughout their journey

This idea should be familiar, it’s also how entire subway lines and subway banners are sold — the in-situ, repetitive exposure burns into your brain. The main, amazing difference, now is that you can actually purchase and get the instant gratification of ownership.

Most important, these helps force retailers to think about the standalone appeal of their products (fitting into a mini cube is different than draped on a hangar). For most retailers, this challenge should be a welcome one.

Instead of looking outwards for the next new thing, perhaps we’re best served look at what’s around us — resourcefulness trumps innovation any day, right?

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Gregarious Narain is a serial entrepreneur and product strategist. A reformed designer and developer, he writes on his experiences as a founder, strategist, and father on the regular. Connect with him on LinkedIn or say hi on Twitter.