currents1
RETAIL CURRENTS    The Retail Currents report focuses on current and future digital    movements in the retail industry. T...
TABLE OF CONTENTS         04         AWARENESS         06 INSIGHTS & RECOMMENDATIONS            FOR THE AWARENESS STAGE   ...
AWARENESS    A shopper identifies a need or want. The awareness stage is the point at which a    potential customer become...
Buytopia uses more traditional tactics to create awareness of their    brand by rewarding their customers digitally. Buyto...
INSIGHTS & RECOMMENDATIONS FOR AWARENESS    Excellent Creative Wins the Awareness Race    Great creative is a powerful thi...
INTEREST    Now that the shopper is aware of their need and prospective brands they become    interested in that product o...
er associate a weight to the review. When a reviewer posts details    such as their city, their real first name or other m...
INSIGHTS & RECOMMENDATIONS FOR INTEREST    Following Customer Behavior and Data    The more a brand and organization under...
CONSIDERATION     In the Consideration phase, the shopper begins to form an opinion and develop ex-     pectations. They a...
way retain their customers. “Half of the battle is getting customers to     your store/site. If you’ve already won that ba...
INSIGHTS & RECOMMENDATIONS FOR CONSIDERATION     If you’ve lead people to enter the Consideration stage - it means     tha...
SELECTION/PURCHASE     The shopper makes a purchase on one of the many possible purchasing avenues.     A common misconcep...
their smartphone. 23% of Canadians who own a smartphone delib-     erately took their smartphone with them to research pro...
reconnect later that day. The sign-in page is branded     in the financial institution’s familiar orange, white and     bl...
In 2012 Sport Chek created a Facebook integrated digital flyer that     allowed consumers to choose the types of products ...
Your website analytics can provide you with a wide range of insights:          •	 Identify your visitors most common traff...
INSIGHTS & RECOMMENDATIONS FOR SELECTION/PURCHASE     Social CRM     Now more than ever, are we constantly collecting and ...
CONCLUSIONThroughout a customer’s journey, communicating digitally is an increasingly im-portant factor in an era where re...
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Retail Currents: A Report on Retail and Digital Communications

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Retail Currents: A Report on Retail and Digital Communications

  1. 1. currents1
  2. 2. RETAIL CURRENTS The Retail Currents report focuses on current and future digital movements in the retail industry. The report highlights how the digital world is changing the behaviour of shoppers and the way they interact with brands. This downloadable PDF version contains thirdocean recommen- dations and insights into retail digital communication as thirdocean is able to maintain a close eye on the quickly evolving industry. Let us know your thoughts on the report www.thirdocean.com makingwaves@thirdocean.com /thirdocean @wearethirdocean PROJECT OVERVIEW Currents is a thirdocean initiative that we’ve decided to public- ly share that explores how the relationship between a specific industry is being affected by digital communications. Human social interactions are accompanied by digital tools and platforms – including some widely known ones such as Face- book, Twitter, Near Field Communications and mobile applica- tions. These extensions are changing the way we consume and contribute to information and experience brands, products and services. Currents aims to support the technology space, innovation within various industries and our overall economy. By bringing together Industry Executives. Disrupters, and Influential Consumers – we can work towards positive and sustainable innovation. YOUR EXPERIENCE We’ve segmented the customer and audience experience in to 4 basic stages: Awareness, Interest, Consideration and Selection/ Purchase. As you navigate your way through Currents, you will learn about some of the innovative movements affecting these customer stages – along with our recommendations for each.2
  3. 3. TABLE OF CONTENTS 04 AWARENESS 06 INSIGHTS & RECOMMENDATIONS FOR THE AWARENESS STAGE 07 INTEREST 09 INSIGHTS & RECOMMENDATIONS FOR THE INTEREST STAGE 10 CONSIDERATION 12 INSIGHTS & RECOMMENDATIONS FOR THE CONSIDERATION STAGE 13 SELECTION/PURCHASE 18 INSIGHTS & RECOMMENDATIONS FOR THE SELECTION/PURCHASE STAGE3
  4. 4. AWARENESS A shopper identifies a need or want. The awareness stage is the point at which a potential customer becomes conscious of a brand. This can happen in a limitless number of ways: your brand shows them something they didn’t know they wanted, something breaks and needs to be replaced, or they see something a friend has and wants it as well. The shopper becomes aware of something missing in their life and brands that can potentially help fill the void. New technology and applications are allowing brands to find new ways to communicate with shoppers. Many stores are going beyond the typical shopping experience and creating innovative meth- ods of direct communications to shoppers in the comfort of their own homes. One of the up and coming trends for technology in retail is augmented reality. AR has been used in-store to allow people to try on clothes without actually entering a changeroom, display what a fin- ished Lego set will look like by holding a box up to a scanner, and to allow people to see how jewellery will look on them - without having to physically try it on in-store. A couple of forward thinking Canadian brands that are taking advantage of AR to promote unique inter- Watch the video of Asif Khan, President and Founder of the Location Based Marketing Asso- action with their brand - include Lowe’s Canada and ciation discuss Augmented Reality with third- SportChek. ocean’s Karim Kanji. Lowe’s Canada found a unique way to communicate with potential shoppers directly in their home. They released an app that caused the effect of LG Appli- ances jumping out of a Lowe’s Canada flyer in 3D. The shoppers could zoom in on specific areas on the appliance, open and close doors, pull out drawers and even turn it on to see how it would work. The flyer gave the shopper the capability to see how an item would look in their own home without actually leaving their home. The flyer was available online as well so that all potential cus- tomers could take part in the 3D experience. In conjunction with the unique flyer release, Lowe`s used social me- dia as well as in-store demonstrations to create a buzz and encour- age more shoppers to try the app. The result was high amounts of positive discussion and excitement about the Lowe`s brand. Lowe`s also places emphasis on the customers experience in-store by providing wi-fi and equipping the store associates with iPhones and iPads to provide better service to shoppers. The devices could display product information as well as product videos.4 awareness stage
  5. 5. Buytopia uses more traditional tactics to create awareness of their brand by rewarding their customers digitally. Buytopia combines tra- ditional communication with rewards by sending out deals via email. When they send out emails containing amazing deals, they find they are able to keep their customer fully engaged and stay top of mind.5 awareness stage
  6. 6. INSIGHTS & RECOMMENDATIONS FOR AWARENESS Excellent Creative Wins the Awareness Race Great creative is a powerful thing. Interesting content and experi- ences alone can be effective in getting people’s attention. While we mentioned the use of Augmented Reality, there are many other ways to capture an audience’s immediate attention that will involve a high level of creative expertise. Intriguing visual brand- ing elements, highlighting incredible organizational culture, edgy campaigns and messaging are some examples. Utilizing Social Media and Popular news topics to be noticed Online newsjacking is one of the more recent things we’ve experi- enced as consumers. A notable case was lead by the Oreo brand. First it was their “rainbow” Oreo which signaled their support for LGBT issues - and more recently it was their Super Bowl “black- out” post. Oreo used their social media accounts - specifically Facebook - to publish these images. Noteworthy in this is that the public has not grown tired of “news- jacking”. It is simple and has proven to be effective (without being pushy) in driving awareness for a brand when the public’s attention is fixated on a particular news item. Staying Local Even large retailers have the capability to stay local in their message to potential shoppers. Buytopia spans across Canada and represents themselves as a whole through their social me- dia however they do make sure to localize. Some of their posts contain certain subjects, hashtags, etc, which connect directly to and are more relevant to individual cities. Data = Context In Your Awareness Efforts The Awareness stage is only the tip of the iceberg. Whether you are a large retail brand or a small local mom and pop shop - guid- ing your targeted audience and prospective customers through an effective Awareness experience is going to be critical. In a world where we are constantly being made “aware” of various products, services and brands - there is room for improvement in order to remain competitive within this stage itself. Digital media enables us to learn and know about our customers better than ever. We are now capable of knowing where key influ- encers shop, play, work and share. Awareness efforts and con- tent coupled with contextual information about customer needs, wants and behaviors will result in more relevant, targeted and effective Awareness pieces. Doing so will also increase the chanc- es that they will graduate on to the Interest stage.6
  7. 7. INTEREST Now that the shopper is aware of their need and prospective brands they become interested in that product or service. Here the opportunity of converting Awareness into Interest presents itself. Perhaps they start noticing relevant advertisements or actively learn about the products or services their friends are using. The potential customer begins to pay attention to the products and services behind a brand. A 2012 survey by Environics Analytics and AskingCanadians™ re- vealed that two-thirds of Canadians said recommendations from family and friends have the highest influence on them when they shop while 12 percent relied on social media. These numbers are con- stantly increasing as more people engage in digital communication. In a more global 2013 study by Adobe on the influencers of mobile purchasing decisions, friends and social media came out on top as the main influencers. Knowing just how much social media can potentially affect a purchaser’s decision during the Interest stage, companies have taken steps towards integrating social media into their e-commerce websites. Certain types of social media integration can allow a shopper to see if any of their friends have talked about or have “liked” a product during their online shopping experience. Toronto’s Buytopia has a feature on their website called “Share Today’s Deal” which allows a shopper to share a deal on their Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or email. Buy- topia is quoted as saying this feature “Is one of the most powerful features we have.” When a customer shares a deal and one of their friends buy, the shopper who shared, gets paid $1 per friend. This is a more unique way retailers are catching the interest of shoppers - rely- ing on their influence on their peers. In a recent global poll by Ipsos, 69% of people said they believe reviews help them in deciding whether to make a purchase or not. A customer review is feedback from a customer that is freely given, usually with the intention of guiding other shoppers in their purchase. Ratings differ from reviews by the lower level of detail provided. Rat- ings only allow consumers to rate products or services on a scaled system. There are many variations in rating systems although a more common system is the “5 stars”. Ratings are not as heavily consid- ered by shoppers as reviews because they are less specific as to why a certain rating was given. Many retailers pair ratings with reviews for clarity. Reviews that contain more information about the reviewer, provide shoppers with more characteristics to relate to and helps the custom-7 interest stage
  8. 8. er associate a weight to the review. When a reviewer posts details such as their city, their real first name or other moderated details this provides the shopper with some contextual information and helps them qualify it as a genuine and relevant review - or one that is not. Consider how popular TripAdvisor is for those of us looking to leave the cold Canadian weather. A website that is created entirely around customer experiences and their resulting reviews and ratings. On average, a potential customer consults 11 consumer reviews when making certain purchases. However, a high percent of those customers are weary of the authenticity of reviews so they tend to analyze the reviews before a final product deci- sion is made. Some companies are purchasing professional reviews on their products - but shoppers are catching on. Shoppers consciously look for reviews that appear to be more genuine and balanced. Many retailers that have created a way for customers to rate or review their products openly have reported improved customer engagement. This is also a clear avenue to hear what customers are really saying. To include reviews, a retailer must be prepared to manage and react to them. For example, Buytopia has a team dedicated to collecting reviews. However, there are still a high percentage of retailers who do not allow public customer reviews or ratings. A prominent reason companies are resisting the review and rating trend is because they prefer positive feedback only. A sensible desire, however, they are dismissing the value of key information that may be communicated through negative feedback. If a retailer is adequately prepared to listen to and manage customer reviews and communication, it can be very beneficial to both custom- ers and retailers. A higher level of customer service and care can be greatly achieved with an online presence. thirdocean works with a wide range of clients, one of which is a pop- ular restaurant. Last year, the restaurant was hosting a major event - of which thirdocean assisting in building awareness and interest about. Two food critics were identified - via Social Media - as con- templating attending the event. After engaging in conversation with them, the two food critics had mentioned food allergies that they had suffered from. thirdocean contacted the restaurant about the allergies, and then communicated the information exchange to the food critics - which further encouraged them to attend the event. This seamless integration between digital communication is what a typical shopper is coming to expect. At the Interest stage of a shop- pers’ journey this type of efficiency can be exactly what is needed to get them to take action or “Consider”.8 interest stage
  9. 9. INSIGHTS & RECOMMENDATIONS FOR INTEREST Following Customer Behavior and Data The more a brand and organization understands their customer, the more likely they will be able to identify triggers that will lead to Interest - and so forth. With Digital Media - we are running out of excuses to not having a solid understanding of who our cus- tomers are, how they behave and how they make their decisions. The power of influence that lives within communities are strong as it relates to helping one “graduate” from being “aware” and becoming “interested”. Other than reviews - in the formal way - there are many functions that exist on digital media that give customers the “endorsement” they need from those who influ- ence their interests. Social Data and Search When consumers are interested in a particular product, they start looking. They turn to their influencers (friends, family, colleagues, mentors), spend more time with them and create discussions. How your brand responds to this human behavior will determine if an interested prospect customer will graduate from the Interest stage to the Consideration stage. Platforms such as Facebook are built for people to express their interests, likes and hobbies. That said, as this valuable data lives on Facebook - there are options to target those who may be interested in your brand based on what they have indicated are their interests. Advertisements and great content are great ways for brands to be present during a customer’s Interest stage. Twitter hashtags are a great way to target specific people who demonstrate even a glimpse of interest in a particular subject - and by extension your product or service. Listening is the easy part. However, extracting what was learned, translating them into how to foster interest and then acting on it - is the difficult party. Uncovering Your Audiences’ Interest No matter how incredible your product and/or service is - you will not be discovered. However, you can increase the chances of being discovered or being interested by those in your target audi- ence or converting passive contacts in to developing an interest - a few ways. Being active in forums, rating sites and producing regular and consistent content on your own blog are examples.9
  10. 10. CONSIDERATION In the Consideration phase, the shopper begins to form an opinion and develop ex- pectations. They are past being aware that your brand exists, have already devel- oped an interest for your products and services - and are now investing more time and effort in considering being a customer. Actively researching, signing up for beta launches and test-driving are indicators that a potential customer is in the Consideration stage. During the Consideration stage a trend that is rapidly forcing retail- ers to react is Showrooming. Showrooming occurs when a shopper visits a traditional store to see and touch an item. A shopper may try an item on, test it out, and even take pictures of a product but leaves without making a pur- chase. The shopper then researches the product online to find it for the cheapest price either while they are still in the store (on a mobile device) or when they leave the store. This could result in the shopper making the purchase in-store while they are there, down the street (online via mobile) or online at home - after the Showrooming experience. Showrooming is also known as com- parison shopping. Some consumers may just be looking at their mobile device to find more information about the product, re- views, ratings or different product options than what is on display. This is not considered showrooming, but this is where the concept of showrooming began. Many customers will look for other places to purchase a product or service if there is poor customer ser- vice, a high price for low quality, lack of information, or an absence of personalization. These perhaps minor factors can push a shopper to want to make their purchase elsewhere. Research by Our Mobile Planet shows 25% of Canadians who own a smartphone were in a store when they researched products or ser- vices on their smartphone. Lisa Delorme, the Co-Founder and CEO of Rent Frock Repeat doesn’t think retailers should try to combat showrooming at all. “They need to figure out why people are leaving their store and buying else- where. Is it price, convenience, shipping?” Delorme noted that if other stores are capable of offering items online and that is where their consumers prefer to make purchases then a retailer must figure out a10 consideration stage
  11. 11. way retain their customers. “Half of the battle is getting customers to your store/site. If you’ve already won that battle - you have to figure out the second part and execute.” How to Oppose Showrooming: • Avoid the initial need for a shopper to look to their mobile device by providing the information upfront. Have as much product information on display as possible as well as knowl- edgable staff. • Offer exclusive in-store only rewards to shoppers who come in to your store to en- courage purchasing. Exclu- sivity through in-store only offers will help to keep your customers in your store. • Depending on your product you could offer shipping from your store to reflect the online experience. Per- haps include free shipping with purchases over a cer- tain amount. • Price match online prices. Some retailers such as Best Buy are fighting the showroom- ing trend by creating new policies. Best Buy announced starting March 3, 2013 they would price match online retail- ers as well as regular retail stores. • If a shopper is on their mobile device why not engage with them there? Use location based communication to engage with shoppers. • Buytopia has a different strategy to combat showrooming. They give their shoppers the mentality of free money. If a customer purchases a voucher they may hang on to it for a few weeks and then have a free service to enjoy or free money to spend on a product. Deals like 20$ for 40$ give shoppers the feeling of free money.11 consideration stage
  12. 12. INSIGHTS & RECOMMENDATIONS FOR CONSIDERATION If you’ve lead people to enter the Consideration stage - it means that you’ve done a good job at your Awareness and Interest gen- erating efforts. Congratulations! You’re almost there. While Show- room-ing was a tactic that was highlighted, there are multiple tactics that can be effective at converting your potential custom- ers from the Interest stage to the Consideration stage. Here are a couple: Beta and Mailing List Subscriptions A voluntary offer of personal data from a potential customer - such as email addresses, name and job title - is powerful. Beta testers or those who want to be made aware of discounts, pro- motions and special events are those whom have graduated past knowing you exist and becoming interested in your products/ser- vices. They are a perfect opportunity and experience away from being your customer. That said, maintain a relationship at this stage - with care. Redirecting attention of the Passive Shopper Those browsing or “shopping around” are in the Consideration phase. Foursquare allows companies to engage with these pas- sive shoppers. When shoppers are checking in to your store, are you incentivizing them to explore current deals and offerings? If your store is located in a mall or shopping cluster do you use foursquare to attract shoppers to you? Consider leaving tips at other retailers, partners and dining establishments - inviting peo- ple to visit your store and to take advantage of featured products and special rates. Add: For example, everyone who checks into Roy Thomson Hall in Toronto receives 10% off any item from their music store. These are examples - of which most retailers are currently not taking advantage of - are simple tactics powered by loca- tion-based technologies that could help increase purchase rates.12
  13. 13. SELECTION/PURCHASE The shopper makes a purchase on one of the many possible purchasing avenues. A common misconception is that this is the end of a customer’s journey. It is not. During this stage a brand has the opportunity to surpass customer expectations, gather key customer data and retain business. Retailers communicate with their shoppers throughout their entire shopping journey. One avenue of communication is Location Based Marketing. Location based marketing is not limited to any particular medium or method; it is where people, places, and media meet. This could be in your office, in transit, at your home or in a store. As Asif Khan, Founder and President of the Lo- cation Based Marketing Association confirmed, location based marketing is not just on mobile devices. Location based marketing can be powered by mobile devices because they are required to determine a shoppers location and then uses many different delivery vehicles. The delivery vehicle of this multimedia varies. The way a person’s location is detected also varies. Some of the more popular ways loca- tion based communication is being delivered to shoppers include: • Mobile apps • Digital signage • Radio • Taxi screens • Online media • Print media • SMS • Indoor positioning To promote in-store purchases and interactivity with a brand, there are an increasing number of companies employing location based marketing. The ability to detect a shopper’s geographical position al- lows a retailer to provide relevant data such as additional product in- formation, discounts, rewards or special offers. As technology evolves location based communication has become interactive allowing the customer to respond. Also, providing the customer with an incentive while they are in or near the store increases the likelihood that a pur- chase will be made because they are closer to the point of purchase. According to Our Mobile Planet 25% of Canadians who own a smart- phone were in a store when they researched products/services on13 selection/purchase stage
  14. 14. their smartphone. 23% of Canadians who own a smartphone delib- erately took their smartphone with them to research products while shopping. Interacting with a shopper on their mobile device can promote de- pendence on mobile applications because it results in rewards for the shopper. This type of communication can also create feelings of exclusivity and enhance a shoppers experience. Khan of The LBMA mentioned a unique type of location based mar- keting The Bay was using this past holiday season. Bonnie Brooks, the president and CEO of the Hudsons Bay Company spoke in a radio ad for the Bay that had special codes embedded. These codes were recognized by Shazam (as long as the app was active) and would take the person on their mobile device to a related page on the HBC website. Listen to the Bonnie Brooks radio ad. Another unique way customers are being targeted based on their location here in Toronto is at Real- Sports. Gail Gabrielle Ordogh, Community Manager of Toronto sports bar RealSports spoke to us about a pilot project that is currently being experimented with. “During a game, they have a crew that deliv- ers ipads with a full catalogue so that people actu- ally in suites are able to order their jersey and have it delivered to them by the end of the game.” The trend here for traditional brick and mortar Watch the video of Gail Gabrielle Ordogh of stores is the creation of a unique, memorable in- RealSports for details on their pilot project and store experience. its success. The video also features thirdocean’s Karim Kanji. Is a mobile app the solution for your business? Individual mobile apps are potentially an ideal com- munication avenue for larger retailers but there are many other options to target a shopper when they are geographically close to the point of purchase. Individual retailer apps may not be an effective use of advertising funds but there are ways around this - according to Khan, President and Founder of the LBMA. If a store is located in a mall, he recom- mends utilizing a mall app instead of an individual app. Khan also recommended wifi engagement which removes the need for an app to interact with a shopper. An example of the wifi engagement can be found at the ING DIRECT Cafe located in downtown Toronto. Once you select their unlocked Wifi network you are taken to a landing page which requires you to submit your full name and email address in order to get online. On submission of these brief details you are taken to the ING DIRECT homepage while an email arrives to your device. The email is quietly branded through text only and its purpose is to provide you with your temporary account details in case you leave the building and wish to14 selection/purchase stage
  15. 15. reconnect later that day. The sign-in page is branded in the financial institution’s familiar orange, white and blue colours - as ING DIRECT has taken this touch- point as an opportunity to build brand awareness. The email they send is not promotional or aggressive, but relevant and useful to the wifi user. Turning wifi engagement up a notch Wifi engagement can go much further than a homep- age and subtle email. This type of location based marketing is being used successfully in the UK and US to provide exclusive events, offers and discounts directly to shoppers. This type of communication can increase customer loyalty and easily reduce the cost of mobile communication. Companies can also communicate with their custom- Watch the video of Asif Khan, President and ers in a relavant manner - when they are geographi- Founder of the Location Based Marketing Asso- cally close to a point of purchase - as well as provide ciation discuss the many options available to re- another point of purchase option (mobile). tailers instead of an indivudal mobile app with thirdocean’s Karim Kanji. During the Selection/Purchase stage, Sport Chek has focused on the shoppers in-store experience using a wide variety of technologies at a location here in Toronto. This retail lab employs augmented reality, interactive kiosks, and digital signage to enhance the shoppers experience. With 140 digital touchscreens installed throughout the store there is no short- age of ways for the shopper to interact with the brand. There is high customization available to every shopper such as shoes or jerseys designed by the customer themselves. Those custom designed items can even be shipped directly to the shoppers house within weeks. Salespeople are also equipped with additional screens to enhance face-to-face interaction and to ensure shoppers’ inquiries are ad- dressed in a timely manner. The staff also have the capability to take over the larger screens in-store to display vendor or community content. Sport Chek employs augmented reality within their “Scan and Save” app which promotes the scanning of certain products with the re- ward of customized offers and discounts while in-store. Through the app it is possible for the shopper to interact with certain sporting brands using social media. This combination of digital and traditional media cultivates a memorable experience for the Sport Chek shop- per. Research revealed that the Sport Chek’s core consumers were under the age of45 and absorb a majority of their content digitally. Sport Chek responded to this information by creating the retail lab and more digital content. Social media with a focus on engagement also became a large part of their customer communications.15 selection/purchase stage
  16. 16. In 2012 Sport Chek created a Facebook integrated digital flyer that allowed consumers to choose the types of products they would like to see. If a shopper selected t-shirts for the flyer, only t-shirts would display. Due to the Facebook integration a Sport Chek shopper could comment, like and share their flyer online. Learning from a Shoppers Journey In order for the Selection/Purchase stage in the customer’s journey to be successful, effective communication with customers is essential. Communicating digitally results in a digital trail of the entire custom- er journey from Awareness to Selection/Purchase. For retailers - hav- ing this data and knowledge can be used to further enhance a shop- per’s experience. Using the digital information gathered from a shoppers journey is called Data Mining. The School of Computing Science defines Data Mining as “the process of turning data into useful knowledge by find- ing previously unknown patterns in large databases.” In digital retail communication this data is often collected via social media, transac- tions, and mobile data. Successful data mining generally includes the use of advanced algorithms to analyze the collected information. There are several studies that specifically note the excessively slow speed of Canadian retailers when attempting to take advantage of data that is already right at their fingertips. It has been proven that companies utilizing shoppers data have a unique competitive advan- tage and are able to find different methods to retain their customers. Data mining allows retailers to make the change from possibly knowing “Yes data is important but mining what a customer wants to predict- the data and making something out ing what a customer will want. Over time retailers will be able to create of it is probably more important.” unique shopping experiences both ~Melody Adhami, Chief Operating Officer of Plastic Mobile online and in-store for each custom- er. In 2012 with an ongoing decline in sales, Sears Canada started taking advantage of their 60 year old credit card database. They realized that their databases housed a large amount of information - but that it was being overlooked. Sears Canada is currently running pilot pro- grams to determine the best ways to use their database of address- es, contact information and shopping history for their 4.5 million credit card holders. Their plan is to move marketing funds from mass marketing to direct to consumer marketing.Their goal is to return to making profits by 2014 from their extensive data mining efforts. “You can catch a lot of data, but unless you are doing something with the data and reacting, then it’s like you’re doing nothing.” Melody COO of Plastic Mobile continues on to mention that there are simple and inexpensive ways to gather and react to consumer data. A sim- ple method of data collection could be looking at your retail websites analytics to see how your customer is using your site.16 selection/purchase stage
  17. 17. Your website analytics can provide you with a wide range of insights: • Identify your visitors most common traffic flow to assist in planning your mobile site experience. • Identify where online visitors are coming from and going to so that you can provide optimal targeting and identify part- nership opportunities. • Analyze customer and competitor search terms to enhance your own search engine ranking performance. • Learn about the demographics of site visitors to determine trends and develop enhanced targeting. • Determine where there are gaps in your website to optimize your own content placement to improve site conversion17 selection/purchase stage
  18. 18. INSIGHTS & RECOMMENDATIONS FOR SELECTION/PURCHASE Social CRM Now more than ever, are we constantly collecting and have ac- cess to key audience and customer data and insights. What is done with this data - is going to enable much more effective communications and help us create more relevant products and increase profits. Data Mining enables companies to determine relationships among “internal” factors such as price, product positioning, or organizational skills, and “external” factors such as economic indi- cators, competition, and customer demographics. It also enables companies to determine the impact of this on sales, customer satisfaction, and profits. As online social applications become ingrained in our daily activ- ities and behaviors, the data and insights available allows com- panies to better understand the customers - and potential cus- tomers in a more timely and authentic manner. As consumers, our connection with online social platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare, Google Plus, Yelp, Pinterest and Instagram - enable us to consume and contribute to data, knowledge and insights - while providing data, knowledge and insights to companies and brands. We, at thirdocean use public information from social data to cre- ate personal dossiers which enable us to create effective com- munication programs for our clients. Having a direct relationship and access to customers, we are able to understand customer pain points, customer service issues and spot opportunities that even our clients may not realize. What customers are purchasing, where they are purchasing it from, when they are purchasing, which specific product/service features they are drawn to and which they are not fond of - are examples of information that enable brands to extend a customer relationship even past the Selection/Purchase stage. The end result is increased sales and more satisfied customers. While there are many Social Customer Relationship Management tools and resources available, they are best managed and utilized by companies who are willing to take on a customer-centric ap- proach to innovation and growth.18
  19. 19. CONCLUSIONThroughout a customer’s journey, communicating digitally is an increasingly im-portant factor in an era where retailers have competitors in both online and offlineworlds.Digital communication in retail can help create endless opportunities in bringinga potential shopper from being aware to purchasing by creating and maintaininga relationship. The most common way shopper–retailer relationships are beingformed is via social platforms. When social media is approached with a custom-er-centric strategy these relationships provide direct access to potential shoppersand a constant transfer of valuable information. Learning from this digital informa-tion is an important step retailers must continuously take advantage of.Creating unique and relevant retail experiences online or in-store is essential in de-veloping repeat visits, Word of Mouth Marketing and a loyal customer-base.Remember that such experiences begin by understanding what your shopperswant at Awareness - straight through to the Selection/Purchase stage.-The thirdocean Team www.thirdocean.com makingwaves@thirdocean.com /thirdocean @wearethirdocean

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