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Resolved: I Will Stop Sending The Same Email To Everyone In 2016

1Susan Wall BrontoWe’ve all been hearing for years that we need to stop batching and blasting our emails. Yet, we know we don’t. Sending a message to every subscriber on our list is our comfort zone — it delivers revenue, no matter what. So let’s make 2016 the year that we acknowledge that it’s hard to give up on batch-and-blast and resolve instead to move away gradually by experimenting with segmented and personalized campaigns. Here are six ways to move away from spraying that whole list:

1. Take Baby Steps

Intersperse bulk sends with segments. The e-Commerce Marketing Manager for fashion retailer Johnny Was didn’t try to convince the marketing team to give up batch-and-blast all together. Instead, she crafted re-engagement messages for customers that had not been responding, then added a cart abandonment messaging program and transactional messages with suggestions on accessories. “We’re working hard to evolve our email strategy from the 'batch and blast' philosophy to a more customer-centric approach, with more triggered messages, personalized content and segmented targeting,” says Frederique Meijer.

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Melissa & Doug, Moleskine Stand Out Among Retailers Combining Content And Commerce

As consumers browse online, they are inundated with retail brand information at nearly every point of their user experience. Whether through an ad, a social network brand page, a video or a blog, consumers now view many, many pieces of content designed to bring them to a purchase. With this in mind, retailers have to not only stress the importance of developing content that stands out, but also of blending it effectively with their overall commerce strategy.

Online retailers that are building out these strategies most consistently include Melissa & Doug, Moleskine and Levenger, according to The U.S. Retail Website Benchmarking Study from Episerver.

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Kohl’s, Walgreens, Century 21 Give Back On #GivingTuesday As Shopping Takes A Breather

As the dust settles from the heavy spending throughout Thanksgiving Weekend, shoppers now have a little bit of time to relax. During this downtime, consumers have an opportunity to spread the holiday spirit and give back to the community.

For the fourth year in a row, the United Nations Foundation and the 92nd Street Y are promoting Giving Tuesday across social media channels, and numerous retailers including Kohl’s, JCPenney, Century21, Rue La La and Walgreens are taking part in the festivities.

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Facebook Launches Two Local Advertising Products For Retailers

Facebook is providing brand marketers with more information about consumers that are within close proximity of their retail stores, according to a company blog post. The social network is launching two new products for retailers: one designed to help SMBs better understand the foot traffic in their area, and another set to enable large retailers to tailor ads to specific store locations.

The first product is included as a new tab as part of its Page Insights feature, enabling brands to track aggregate demographics and local trends. Brands can view this information for people that pass within 150 feet, 450 feet and 1,500 feet of a store's location, according to AdWeek. With this information, businesses can discover the area’s busiest times of the week, to better gauge which shoppers are most likely to visit their store. Marketers can see specific demographic data of shoppers, including age and gender, and whether they are a tourist or a local opportunity.

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Technology Is Important, But Trust Is Essential

2TrustWe talk a lot about omnichannel retail and giving today's shoppers every option when it comes to product ordering and delivery. But what is really at the heart of retail success is establishing a trusting relationship with customers. It sounds simple, but it's not.

This week I attended the Money20/20 conference in Las Vegas, where there were a lot of discussions and questions around data security and payment innovation. Are retailers implementing EMV? How can we make mobile payment work at the drive-thru? What are the steps to speeding the checkout process, both online and in the store? These are all great questions and need to be addressed, but when it comes right down to it, they all lead to Trust.

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Easypromos Delivers Transparency To Twitter Sweepstakes

Holding social media sweepstakes events can be a great way to quickly increase followers, generate brand loyalty and boost company engagement. However, retailers face a dilemma when picking winners, as they are often forced to pick a winner randomly. This can leave them exposed to repercussions should questions be asked about the validity of the winner selection process.

Easypromos has launched a Twitter Sweepstakes Application designed to support retailers organizing sweepstakes programs on the social network based on retweets and followers. The solution enables retailers to carry out a random sweepstakes among all users who retweet one or more of their brand's tweets. The retailer can accumulate up to 10 tweets and filter the finalists so that only followers of the Twitter profile are entered into the sweepstakes.

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REI To Close Its Stores On Black Friday As Part Of #OptOutside Campaign

Outdoor apparel and recreational gear retailer REI has decided to buck industry trends by shutting its doors for Black Friday. On Nov. 27, REI will close all 143 of its stores and give its 12,000 employees a paid day off.

The retailer made the announcement through its web site and launched the social media hashtag #OptOutside to promote spending time outdoors instead. The #OptOutside campaign has a web site of its own, which includes a zip code search feature that directs users to nearby outdoor hotspots, as well as an area where consumers to share images of their Black Friday activity.

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Shoppable Social: The Future Of Online Commerce

1PaypalWe’ve all heard the buzz about shoppable social media, but many retailers are still trying to figure out how to leverage it. In this Q&A, Aunkur Arya, Braintree's General Manager of Mobile, shares details about the new tools and strategies that are changing the game in e-Commerce.

What Is Contextual Commerce?

Contextual commerce enables consumers to purchase a product or service the moment it is needed. For example, as you are finishing dinner at a restaurant you might need a ride home. This would be the perfect time for your Uber app to offer you a car. Contextual commerce means giving people purchasing options that are relevant to their location, activities and interests.

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Loyalzoo Digital Loyalty Platform Brings Programs Onto Single App

For decades, loyalty programs have encouraged customers to visit stores and buy from retailers on a more ongoing basis. These programs are undoubtedly a mainstay for large brands and retailers, but smaller businesses also can capitalize on these initiatives.

Loyalzoo has launched a loyalty app that enables independent retailers to build and manage their own brick-and-mortar, online and mobile loyalty programs. Retailers can add their own logos and colors to the app in order to make the customer experience more aligned with their brand image.

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Yahoo Research Uncovers The New Face Of Fatherhood

3YahooimageParents of children in grades K-12 plan to spend an average of $873 per student, according to research from the Rubicon Project.

Although moms traditionally occupied the Chief Buying Officer role of their households, new research from Yahoo indicates that a new generation of Millennial dads want to get more involved. As a result, retailers need to understand the buying behaviors and preferences of these younger dads, and tailor back-to-school campaigns and messages to them.

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