Retail's Future Intelligence, Technologies, Macy's, Customer Journeys & What We're Reading this Week

September 04, 2015

Designed by Anouk Wipprecht Designed by Anouk Wipprecht

Retail's Future Intelligence, Technologies, Macy's, Customer Journeys & What We're Reading This Week

Omer Artun cannot predict the future. But he has a pretty good idea what it might look like. He explained the basics of this craft at a late August launch party for his book, Predictive Marketing, co-written with AgilOne CMO Dominique Levin. AgilOne is one of many firms that are surfing on the big data wave. But the approach differs, said Artun, in that AgilOne is relying on artificial intelligence to make a difference. The key is to take big data and use AI to “learn” from it, Artun explained. “It has to teach itself.”

Brick-and-mortar retailers are scrambling to win back consumers who are increasingly turning to the web to make their purchases. To catch up with changing consumer behavior, physical retailers are adopting digital technologies - from beacons to interactive fitting rooms - to keep customers engaged and coming back for more. These in-store technologies are interactive, productive tools designed to catch the attention of increasingly tech-savvy consumers.

Macy’s committed to enormous investments across both the online and offline platforms. It started in 2008, when the recession hit, with a major reorganization, transitioning its buying offices to 60 districts, moving all the merchandising people to New York in order to be close to suppliers, and moving its Innovation Lab group to San Francisco, because that was the best place to compete for the Silicon Valley talent. Brilliant, no?

Integration of customer data across all customer touch points is key for achieving a holistic view of customers and responding appropriately at each interaction along their journey. Organisations that successfully integrate their customer data are able to better target, engage, sell and satisfy prospects and customers.

What does Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz know that some retailers don’t? In its most recent quarter, Starbucks reported solid earnings that beat expectations, and quarterly revenue rose a hefty 18 percent, to $4.9 billion. Schultz told analysts that investing in digital technology instead of digital ads was a factor in Starbucks’ success.

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