Nordstrom uses influencers to promote safety and draw anxious shoppers

Wendy Nguyen, a fashionable Instagram personality with 1.1 million followers, is regularly tapped by retailers like Macy’s and Banana Republic to promote their wares on social media. They typically want her to take a stylish photo in their apparel and enthuse about their brand and any upcoming sale or product line. But Ms. Nguyen recently fielded what she considered an unusual and “very careful” inquiry from Nordstrom. It wanted to gauge her interest in a campaign that would require visiting the company’s seven-story flagship store in New York to highlight Nordstrom’s new safety measures and “encourage people to experience what they built,” she said. The subsequent Instagram posts from Ms. Nguyen and a handful of other influencers were shared in the last two weeks and offer a glimpse into pandemic-era retailing and the ways stores are trying to bring shoppers back in person. The women, clad in trendy clothing and masks, were photographed in unusual and notably spacious parts of the store like the Nordstrom x Nike sneaker boutique, the so-called personalization studio and a section dubbed the “Beauty Haven.” (There was one on an escalator.) The posts all praised Nordstrom’s safety measures, like mandatory masks, abundant hand sanitizer and adherence to social distancing. Read more at The New York Times.