Astoria Trip: Why We Do the Things We Do

HOT TOPICS ALERT! We changed our Talk and Tour program category name to COOL NEW YORK to truly reflect the opportunities we offer for apparel and lifestyle trend tracking in NYC.  These dynamic outings are meant to be cutting edge, work-related but so much fun that you could almost forget there is a career connection.  And yes, food is fashion.  Plenty of articles have cropped up lately about Astoria, Gotham’s epicenter of ethnic food choices.

SXT 806 Foodies’ Paradise: Astoria
This Saturday’s (May 14th) Astoria trip menu includes: Specialty markets for meat, fish, imported ingredients and spices, old school bakeries, gourmet coffee purveyors, wine shops, outdoor beer gardens and the best in Greek cuisine – all the food that’s FIT to munch! The tiropita alone is worth the trip!



The Pastries and Aromas of Greece
Published: May 5, 2011
At Artopolis Bakery, one can find cinnamon aromas, old men in black suits, baskets of Greek pastry and Regina Katopodis, whose passions are people and cookies…


Read more:

Size Matters

Small is In
by Robin Lewis

Pardon me, but I just can’t help myself. I seem to have an Edgar Allan Poe-like fixation. In this case I’m stuck on small format retailing, including “moms and pops,” as a winning model in the over-stored and -stuffed 21st Century. Again, this is due to the format’s “smallness,” which affords it easier physical access to the consumer, across the street in their neighborhoods. It’s my preemptive distribution “thing” again: the necessity to get to the consumer first, faster and more often than the hordes of equally compelling competitors, or you lose.

And, while everybody says, “…oh yeah, I get it,” most are thinking about e-commerce. Well, while I most certainly understand that e-commerce is enormous, and the fastest growing retail preemptor, I’m finding it very difficult to get senior retail executive readers to understand that the bricks and mortar/physical aspect of the total preemptive distribution strategy is just as important.

Some of the larger players, like Walmart, Home Depot, Best Buy, Office Depot, Staples, Target, CVS and Walgreen’s, are beginning to get it. And, I do believe Walmart opened their eyes a bit wider upon realizing they were losing enormous share to the dollar stores who are blowing out their small, neighborhood stores across the country. In the department store sector, as I’ve said many times, Kohl’s led the small, convenient, neighborhood strategy way before I think they even realized it, back in the early 90’s. JCPenney picked up on the wisdom of that preemptive strategy and now has its own small store strategy. Bloomingdale’s does as well, and I wonder when their parent Macy’s will opt in. Their localization strategy certainly begs for it.

And, by the way, while this small store strategy is a necessity to continue winning share of a no-growth pie, the big traditional players also must understand that the other preemptive formats such as branded specialty chains, e- and m-commerce, TV, kiosks, pop-ups, food carts, in-flight shopping, door-to-door, living room selling parties, tractor-trailer tour trucks, and probably a dozen others I’ve missed, are not sitting still. They will continue to evolve and create. Evermore.


FIT’s Non-Credit Certificate program in Retailing: Social and E-Commerce
FIT’s Non-Credit Certificate program in
Retailing: Customer Experience Management
FIT’s Non-Credit Classes in Retail Experience Management


Outside Event

Entrepreneur IEvening
Tuesday, June 14, 2011, 4:00 – 8:00 pm
New York, Herrick, Feinstein LLP – 2 Park Ave.

VC Pitching & Power Pivot Workshop
Need to raise a million–or more? This powerful iBreakfast/iEvening quarterly meeting of entrepreneurs, VCs and seasoned execs enables start-ups to find their “pivot” point while offering a unique opportunity to raise capital.


Advance your career. Pursue your passion.