State of Retail & CRM - Time to Re-Imagine


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CRM is like 'Whack-A-Mole' trying to hit moving targets: customers. Longtime entrepreneur Steve Harmon shares some insights from his talk at a recent conference on how to beat the game not with bigger hammers but different tools.

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  • 5 different days, 2 phone calls and nobody was available. 4 associates staffed appliances all day long
  • This is only the start. It’s going to be the norm.
  • Jeff experiments. He’s not always right. But he can afford to be wrong. As can Apple, Google, Facebook and others who want the $3 trillion commerce pie for themselves. I first met Jeff in 1995 when he had a lousy looking website that sold boring old books. I predicted it would be “Walmart of the Web” and it’s on the way.
  • Technology isn’t to blame no more than Ford is to blame for making blacksmithing a fading trade. Change requires change.
  • It’s not about building a website, mobile optimization, apps, SEM, SEO, etc. Customers will seek out the products/brands they have a connection with, in spite of technology, hurdles, etc.
  • What if a website made you wait? Didn’t have the item? Made you get in line, didn’t open another register? Took long lunch break?
  • If your dog will go where the food is then how loyal is it? Was it loyalty or just food bribes?
  • This is only a partial list… basically it’s every retailer, even those online. Remember ONSALE.COM? Re-imagining is a daily need for all retailers. If you don’t re-imagine, 2 entrepreneurs and a wad of venture capital will. They want the $3 trillion retail prize. Ecommerce is still a small fraction of in-person retail. But then this little device called the cell phone came out. Smart phones today will look like dumb phones tomorrow. The phone will be the store, bank, fulfillment and more. Re-imagine and get ahead of the curve.
  • There is hope. A new hope. What I call ‘r2e2’ – retail reimagined, emotional engagement
  • Not crying for 1970s era retail. Not complaining about technology taking the market. Not getting angry over channel collapse. Doing. Acting, not reacting.
  • You have a sensory environment that trumps smartphones, websites and anything else. And it’s being unused. Store layouts are based on 19th century ideas. Endcaps are sold to the highest bidder. Aisles are long, empty walkways. Salespeople linger in the shadows. Checkouts are cattle calls. Managers are nowhere in sight. Products are stacked up as high as the shelf.
  • It has to be real. A genuine connection. Just like dating.
  • If you still don’t understand “love” vs. “lust” then check this out
  • Each had a poor strategy to lock in profits at the expense of customers. Each sold the past and not the future. What do you sell?
  • If bricks and mortar retail is dead then why did Apple open stores all over the world? Because it wants to control the emotional engagement with its fans/customers. It didn’t want a random act of salesmanship or shelf wars to screw it up. And it works.
  • If it worked for Apple then it can work for us, but we don’t know the ‘Apple Way’ … actually, if you’re married or have a dog then you do. It’s called get a connection going based on reality. Good product, good service, good support. It works.
  • Your CIO and CTO will pitch data as the solution. But data doesn’t captain the ship. Data is only part of the means to an end.
  • Drinking from the firehose is dangerous to your health. Data needs filtering, siphoning, and it’s never a replacement for the human connection.
  • Make data your slave, not master. Don’t chase the trend of “we gotta be on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram...” this is Whack-A-Mole and you will never drive business by following trends. Just make real connections and technology will enable your customers to find you and vice versa.
  • We all carry around a lot of digital baggage. Yes, it defines us. But is it us? A 40 year old female and 12 year old male can both like Superman or Fast N Furious… or even Twilight
  • Rolling stones, Hunger Games, 50 shades… let’s see…
  • Fact is, everyone’s data cloud is dirty. Jumbled, a mess. Will it ever be cleaned up? Not likely. No more than humans will only act logically. If logic ruled then Spock would command the Enterprise, not Captain Kirk.
  • So that person walking into your store…what are they really?
  • If everything’s made in China, plastic and some glue, then what’s there to get emotional about? We’re all looking for highlights in our lives. Products and brands can bring those sometimes. Manufacturers will be making direct connections with customers do just that. Where does that leave the retail store?
  • Emotional doesn’t mean weak or sob stories… and it’s not the psychology of the sale or manipulation of the mind. It’s not about ‘reality distortion fields’ RDF as many describe Apple and Steve Jobs. It is about a feeling of empowerment through the product.
  • Most stores rely on sight to wow… but what about smell, touch, feel, sound? A key advantage of in-person retail is the multi-sense experience. If your store is just a visual showroom then don’t complain about showrooming… you created one. Why not create an experience for customers to enjoy?
  • GameStop does a great job, so I’m not picking on it. Its reward program, PowerUp, works. My son uses it. He buys used games there, trades games in, etc. Weekend power workshops.
  • The martial arts instructor I go to has an old black belt. Eventually black belts wear out. But rather than getting a new one the goal is actually to be humble enough to admit that you’re always starting over. Always learning. Haven’t reached the summit. Be willing to learn fresh. Combine experience with drive for fresh knowledge. Level up by starting fresh.
  • State of Retail & CRM - Time to Re-Imagine

    1. 1. The disloyalty erasteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    2. 2. 3 things I’m talking about:• Disloyalty• State of the market• Solution?steve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    3. 3. First, a personal story…How Home Depot lost $10,000 of my business in one afternoonsteve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013DISLOYALTY
    4. 4. $10,000 sale lostOr 1,431 hammers they need to sellto make up for it –That’s a lot of hammerssteve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013DISLOYALTY
    5. 5. It’s a price war..• 94% of online buy on price• 54% search 4 or more websites beforepurchase• 27% check reviewsDISLOYALTY
    6. 6. Showrooming23%steve@steveharmon.com22%12%steve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013DISLOYALTY
    7. 7. 57% percent of showroomers go here:Welcome to his jungle• $1.50 per share• “Walmart of the Web”when it only sold music• Lessons you can applysteve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013DISLOYALTY
    8. 8. The Internet has killed retail, right?steve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013DISLOYALTY
    9. 9. It’s never going to stop…steve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013DISLOYALTY
    10. 10. steve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013CRM today
    11. 11. <on stage>• Please check under your seat for a papertaped there… if you find it yell out! steve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    12. 12. Who/what are your competitors?• Manufacturers• Brands• Internet• Mobile• 2 girls in a garage in Palo Alto• Customers themselves• Most of all: Poor store/sales/buyingexperiencesteve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    13. 13. With all this dirty data, is loyalty for real?• Does the average customer think about yourstore and say “I’ve got to be loyal”?• Average person has 18 “loyalty” cards• Forgot your card? Many people forget whichphone number is associated with the storethey’re shopping in…so the clerk scans thegeneric card near the register instead• What about GameStop? Safeway? Etc. Haveelements of great customer relationships. How toimprove? (more on that later)steve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    14. 14. Shopping inperson has a lotof benefits…steve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    15. 15. Professional salespeople…steve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    16. 16. Compact slots…steve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    17. 17. Inventory…steve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    18. 18. Instant gratification• Get it now vs. wait for shipping• Return it quickly if problemsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    19. 19. The state of retail:steve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    20. 20. 5 signs you need to re-imagine retail:1. “Have a nice day” is still the last thing a customerhears before exiting the store2. “We may be getting more in next week”3. “The sale ended yesterday”4. “That’s not my department”5. “Let me answer the phone and then I’ll help you”steve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    21. 21. steve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    22. 22. r2e2retailre-imaginedemotionalengagementsteve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    23. 23. r2 (retail re-imagine)• Space, location• Instant gratification• Create experiences around the product• Guides/personal assistants (sorry Siri)• Adventure (we buy to explore new worlds, notengage in the old one)• Know customers, not just “data” (What canGameStop do better, for example)steve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    24. 24. Retail Love vs. Retail Lust…Retail Love Retail LustWants what’s best forcustomerWants to get as much $$$from customer nowProtects customer frommanufacturerWe didn’t make that junkUnconditional, we’re here tohelp anytime15 days with receipt,unopened, 15% restocking feeWill never do anything to hurtcustomer, tries to reallyimprove their lives somehowSays “not into making love justinto this quick transaction!”I love you no matter what You didn’t buy the warranty(the prenuptial on the receiptsays tough luck for you)Loves you next morning “Oh, you’re back?”steve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    25. 25. Retail Love…• Chocolate and flowers, no obligationssteve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    26. 26. Retail Lust…• “Hey, I bought the beer!”steve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    27. 27. Brick and mortar is dead, right?WherehouseCircuit CityBlockbusterBorders…More to follow?steve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    28. 28. Twice the sales per square foot than ANY other retailersteve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    29. 29. Hire a bunch of guys from Apple?Doesn’t guarantee anything… if they don’t use the proper approach“Let’s sublet our entire floor space!”steve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    30. 30. So let’s get aheap of BigData… that’llsolve allretailer’
    31. 31. Big data to the rescue?steve@steveharmon.comAge, sex, address, conversions, frequency, habits…steve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    32. 32. Big data is only useful as “small data”• If it was just about likes and interests thenFacebook would be beating Amazon at retailAmazon: $61 billion sales (commerce) … over100 million credit cards storedFacebook: $5 billion (ads) … zero credit cardsstoredsteve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    33. 33. Your customer? Are they just ‘data’?• 166 megs of music• 282 megs of photos• Over a gig of emails• 142 friend connections• 45 gigs of movies owned• 150 gigs of streamed video/yearAverage person’s personal digital data:steve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    34. 34. Based on that profile…• Rolling stones, Hunger Games, 50 shades… Ican sell them:steve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    35. 35. steve@steveharmon.comPersonal data cloudsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    36. 36. Context debunked• Everyone is a jumble of mixed data, mixedmotives, impulses, multi-tasking family, work,play, life… overwhelmed by choice, gadgets,time, money, expenses, reminders, to-dos,news, info glut…etc.• You’re not selling context, you should beselling R-E-L-I-E-Fsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    37. 37. e2 (emotional engagement)• Why does one brand of plastic cased phoneoutsell another?• Is that latte really worth $5?• Every car has 4 wheels, why are some $100k?• Stores must think “human relationships”...Does the store manager/sales even know thename of the person paying their bills?steve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    38. 38. No, not Freud psychobabblesteve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    39. 39. Use the 5 senses…This is the #1 hardware store in its county, beating Home Depot, Lowe’s and otherssteve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    40. 40. For example…• GameStop could:– Recognize the superstars who walk in the door• Many players are the equivalent of LeBron James orMichael Jordan at playing their games• Build networks around players by locale, games, levels• Offer discounts to prestige players, first downloads ofDLC packs, extra maps, etc.• Super player workshops to train recruits/newbs• Etc.steve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    41. 41. Tabula rasa…The goal of a black belt is a white belt?steve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013
    42. 42. r2e2…the possibilities are endlesssteve@steveharmon.comsteve harmonCRMC ConferenceJune 19, 2013