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NRF embarks on Summer Road Trip Designed to Enhance State Partnerships, Highlight Retail Careers, Community Impact and Innovations

Summer Road Trip Designed to Enhance State Partnerships, Highlight Retail Careers, Community Impact and Innovations

WASHINGTON, 2014-4-25 — /EPR Retail News/ — One year after the world’s largest retail association launched its This is Retail initiative, the National Retail Federation has embarked on two significantly larger scale initiatives that will bring together select retailers and students with state retail associations, legislators, government and opinion leaders, and universities: Retail Across America and the This is Retail Summer Road Trip.

Throughout the spring and summer, NRF will partner with five targeted state retail associations to produce “mini campaigns” designed to drive awareness of retail’s impact in specific states and local communities, as well as challenge common misperceptions about careers in the industry. NRF has formed partnerships with the California Retailers Association, North Carolina Retail Merchants Association, Ohio Council of Retail Merchants, South Dakota Retail Association and Washington Retail Association.

“We have an extraordinary opportunity to promote retail’s incredible story through partnerships with state retail associations,” said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay. “By leveraging historic and well-known retailers in each of these states, we hope to further the idea that retail provides life-long and dynamic careers, plays an instrumental role in the innovations consumers see today and greatly and positively impacts the communities they are a part of.

“As we continue to advocate for retailers in Washington, we recognize these powerful stories from across the country will significantly help us advance retail’s agenda, and will drive home the message that retail plays an integral role in our economy – something large and small retailers are extremely proud of.”

Each state partnership will include:

•    Four videos highlighting the industry’s economic footprint in the state and each This is Retail pillar—careers, community and innovation
•    Roundtable discussions with legislative leaders and retailers from select states
•    Targeted in-state media strategy and advertising buys
•    Blogger coverage of the “road trip” across America through social content, including blog posts, live tweets and Instagram posts.

This content will be an integral part of NRF’s annual “fly-in” event, the Retail Advocates Summit, in July 2014

North Carolina Retail Merchants Association Chosen as Pilot Partner for Retail Across America

Retail Across America kicked off today at an event with the North Carolina Retail Merchants Association. As the retail industry is the largest private employer in the state, second only to state government, North Carolina was a natural partner for the initiative.  Additionally, more than 60 retail brands have headquarters or distribution centers across the state and 30 of North Carolina’s top employers are retailers.

At the kick-off event NRF’s Shay addressed a crowd of invited retailers, business partners and media on the various components of This is Retail.

During his remarks, Shay commented, “I’m reminded every time I leave Washington and meet with retailers from around the country how powerful and impactful our industry is…today, I’m proud to be here for the first stop of Retail Across America. No one knows retail like the North Carolina Retail Merchants Association and its members.”

The North Carolina campaign features stories on careers, community and innovation sourced from retailers around the state, including nationally known Belk, Food Lion, and Family Dollar, as well as independent companies such as Winston-Salem-based Monkee’s,  Fuquay-Varina-based Ashworth’s, and Charlotte-based Kimbrell’s Furniture. Aspiring retailers from Wake Forest University’s Center for Retail Innovation are also highlighted. Biographies of those profiled are available upon request.

This is Retail Summer Road Trip

Building on the success of the NRF’s student and university member programs, and as part of Retail Across America, NRF will select four college students from the NRF Student Association to travel with NRF staff to each partner state. Students will partake in the process of filming and gathering content, while also contributing to NRF’s social efforts through blog posts, Twitter, and Instagram. NRF will pick one student for each state to ride along for a week to witness the industry first hand.

“The summer road trip is a unique opportunity for students considering a career in retail to meet with industry leaders and see retail in action first hand,” said Shay. “We are hoping these students benefit as much from this experience as we know we will. We’re looking forward to being a part of these students successful journey and are eager to see them flourish in their eventual careers.”

The students will be selected based on their desire to pursue a career in retail after college and communications and social media experience and understanding. In addition receiving the all-expense trip, each student will receive a $1,000 stipend.

NRF launched This is Retail in 2013 to highlight the industry’s opportunities for life-long careers, the vast impact of retail on the communities it serves, and the critical role retail plays in resourcing the next level of innovation for a broad cross section of industries and business of all sizes.

NRF is the world’s largest retail trade association, representing discount and department stores, home goods and specialty stores, Main Street merchants, grocers, wholesalers, chain restaurants and Internet retailers from the United States and more than 45 countries. Retail is the nation’s largest private sector employer, supporting one in four U.S. jobs – 42 million working Americans. Contributing $2.5 trillion to annual GDP, retail is a daily barometer for the nation’s economy. NRF’s This is Retail campaign highlights the industry’s opportunities for life-long careers, how retailers strengthen communities, and the critical role that retail plays in driving innovation.

Bethany Aronhalt or Kathy Grannis (855) NRF-PRESS


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