Posts Tagged: Retail

As Sales Continue to Fall, Could Mobile be the Saving Grace?

At a time when sales typically increase, the latest news is that retail sales figures for January are in fact, the second worst since 1995. There’s nothing like a touch of reality to make retailers come down with a bump as 2012 gets into full swing, but that is the face of modern retailing unfortunately. Read more on As Sales Continue to Fall, Could Mobile be the Saving Grace?…

How Technology is Revolutionising the Customer Experience

The ability to meet the demands of today’s customer has never been more critical to business survival. Customers now want to shop in many ways and expect to get the same ‘store experience’ across all channels. Technology is radically changing the face of the retail customer experience and the pace of change is getting quicker by the day. Retailers need to embrace it now more than ever if they want to survive. Read more on How Technology is Revolutionising the Customer Experience…

Read more on How Technology is Revolutionising the Customer Experience…

The devil is in the detail

Over the past year, many in the retail sector have been warning of the dangers for brands of getting drawn into the price promotions trap, and how they need to find a way to get out of this cycle – and quickly. This was further emphasised recently, when in the build up to a lecture at Mountainview Learning alongside Mars global chief marketing officer Bruce McColl, Professor Byron Sharp of the Ehrenberg-Bass Institute for Marketing Science, accused marketers who try to build brand loyalty through price promotions of being like “medieval doctors” whose bloodletting tactics inadvertently kill the patient.

Read more on The devil is in the detail…

Preparation, preparation, preparation

Creating experiential and field marketing campaigns is simple, right? You choose the space, you choose the staff, you choose what you want to do, and presto, you have yourself an experiential campaign.

Read more on Preparation, preparation, preparation…

Brands and retailers benefit from added value promotions

When Tesco created its Every Day Low Price back in 2002 it, probably rightly, claimed that all anyone wanted was to get their shopping at the cheapest possible price. As initiatives like this have developed throughout the industry so the awareness from consumers to search out the lowest possible price has increased, making it more and more difficult for brands to gain differentiation in the market place.

Read more on Brands and retailers benefit from added value promotions…

Snapping at the ankle of the elephant

In the small market town of Newcastle Emlyn in West Wales, a war is currently raging. News that a prime site on its tiny, character-full high street is being offered to one of the big supermarket chains has not gone down well with local retailers, who are now fighting back with feisty campaigns and a flurry of press coverage.Similar battles take place in towns across the UK every year. Yet, far from being exhausted by their uphill struggle against the might of the multiples, independent retailers are drawing deep and giving the fight everything they’ve got. Often, they have public sympathy on their side, thanks to fears of additional traffic congestion and the perceived risk to the town’s ‘soul’.But the one weapon they have lacked until now (other than the quite obscene financial resources available to the big multiples) is strategic information – information that would enable them to make better choices and capture customers’ loyalty to protect their businesses against rival attacks on their market share.

Read more on Snapping at the ankle of the elephant…

Confused retail targeting? Blame it on the kids

Many retailers have got their act together when it comes to extending their reach from the High Street into customers’ homes. If my family’s collective inbox is anything to go by we seem to have most of the big retail names emailing us on a regular basis, with offers in various shapes and sizes. Some of these are driven by loyalty schemes; some are the result of online shopping and data collection, while others are ad hoc service or sales messages following some kind of customer service experience.

These are communications that we have, in theory, opted in to at some point and so should be of relevance and interest. But the more we get, the less relevant the messages seem to become and the higher the proportion that hit the ‘deleted’ pile. Many of these are from brands that used to have a much higher conversion rate to click through or even sale but whose relevance has been steadily diluted over time. So who should we blame for this? My money’s on the kids…

Effective one-to-one marketing has been the holy grail of many direct marketers for years and the intelligent use of data has played a major part in achieving this. But for many retailers using online communications, it’s becoming increasingly hard to use familiar methods to target accurately. This is largely because the roles involved in the buying process are becoming more blurred in households, especially in relation to (teenage) children.

Kids have more and more spending power – many also now have their own debit cards and no longer need to rely on parents for online or in-store purchases. Others, however, are still reliant on parents to act as both banker and buyer which can complicate the targeting of good communications, especially if transactional data is consolidated through loyalty schemes or cards. Mums end up buying war games and Superdry clothing for sons, as well as ‘young’ make up and Abercrombie and Fitch for daughters, all on loyalty cards bearing their name. Little surprise that they’re not then interested in messages offering the latest in zombie-killing wargame technology or fashion suited to those 20 or 30 years younger.

Understanding the different roles of influencer, decision maker, buyer, banker and ‘loyalty’ member is becoming increasingly important if we’re to improve the hit rate of right person, right message, right time. This is further complicated by multiple email addresses being associated with the same postal address through transactional data. Digital marketing can play a key role here in engaging individuals and persuading them to provide richer data – as long as additional insight is used effectively to drive more targeted marketing at both personal and household level, which can only serve to reinforce brand loyalty…and family harmony.

Read more on Confused retail targeting? Blame it on the kids…

Enough of the junk mail already!

It seems that scatter-gun emailing still a viable way to educate consumers about a brand, from the amount of irrelevant stuff that was yet again in my inbox when I logged in this morning.

Read more on Enough of the junk mail already!…

How can digital brands compete with heritage?

It starts with a little scamp in a flat cap purchasing a loaf of bread from a bakers. A near miss with a horse drawn cart and a healthy dose of sepia tells us we’re somewhere in Victorian England, and a midland dialect is thrown in to make us feel all warm inside. As the boy dashes home through the cobbled streets, loaf in arm, he dodges a march of suffragettes, salutes some First World War soldiers and skips past a Model T Ford. And so begins last year’s 122 second advert from Hovis, designed to chart how much Britain has changed since the company was founded, presumably in a bakery much like the one in the opening scene, 122 years ago.

Read more on How can digital brands compete with heritage?…

Crossing borders with email marketing

It really amazes me that there are still so many sloppy emailers that think they can apply the same strategy to their international campaigns as they do their UK campaigns, and use the same content and creative. Just last night I received an email from an Australian winter sports travel company telling me it was ‘dumping with snow and to come skiing this weekend’. It also thanked me for my previous booking OR enquiry. Firstly, they should know from their data capture form that I’m in the UK, where it’s not snowing (ok it might be raining constantly but it is our summer time), and popping off for a quick ski down under just isn’t feasible. And secondly, surely they should know if I’ve booked a trip with them before or if I’ve simply enquired with them so they can tailor the email accordingly?

Read more on Crossing borders with email marketing…