If you’ve been paying attention to commercials lately, you might have noticed the new campaign by Target, highlighting local shops from around the country specializing in everything from candy to antiques. The project encompasses teaming up with the small-business owners to create a hand-selected line of goods for Target, which will then be sold in Target stores nationwide in customized displays that recreate each business’s unique aesthetic. The first line of products was unveiled on May 6th, and have launched to such a great start, the company just released a line-up of fall stores to be featured later this year. Meanwhile, one of the stores currently being featured, the Polka Dog Bakery, happens to be located in Boston’s own South End.
Going from a locally known neighborhood speciality shop to working with a large multinational corporation doesn’t happen overnight.
“Target approached us about creating a collection as part of their design partnerships program,” says Deborah Gregg, owner of the Polka Dog Bakery. “After giving it some thought, we decided it would be a great opportunity to share Polka Dog Bakery across the country. We worked closely with the Target design team to create a collection that best represents Polka Dog Bakery to a larger market.”
Getting to see their items in the Target stores, and having the commercials airing has affected their business in many ways.
“We are getting new Facebook likes from all over the country and even world, new Twitter followers, and more online purchases on our website, www.polkadog.com. Lots of people are posting photos of their dogs on our Facebook page with new Polka Dog Bakery at Target collars or with a new toy or treat from the collection. We are really seeing a reaction through social media channels. It’s so exciting to see this type of frenzy around Polka Dog Bakery,” says Gregg.
So what does it feel like to be a small boutique owner that’s suddenly on TV at nearly every commercial break?
“I don’t watch much TV, so I’ve only seen it once. The amazing part is how many people actually have seen it and how floored they are – especially the people that know Polka Dog Bakery, myself and Polka Dog partner, Rob,” says Gregg. “We have had so many phone calls, emails, Facebook posts from surprised friends, family, and customers who were sitting on their sofa and suddenly see it. It is really cool.”