At the 2018 Retail Innovation Conference, innovation wasn’t limited to the educational sessions. Sponsors showcased solutions for some of the retail industry’s most pressing concerns, including marketing personalization; mobile applications; making loyalty and referral marketing programs more effective; deepening connections between retail associates and shoppers; and the latest in design and digital signage.
Following is a roundup of the sponsors’ offerings.
Retail inventory management provider 4R Systems leverages advanced analytics, based on statistics and machine learning techniques, to help retailers streamline omni retail inventory management through replenishment, seasonal allocation, assortment and buying decisions. The company’s proprietary machine learning-powered algorithm empowers retailers to view inventory stock levels and forecast every SKU. It also uses predictive and prescriptive analytics to predict future behavior. Customers include The Vitamin Shoppe, Dillard’s, Family Dollar and Pep Boys.
AT&T supports mobile solutions in a wide range of retail venues and, more broadly, the digital transformations taking place in retail stores, according to Michael Colaneri, VP, Global Business for Retail, Restaurant & Hospitality at AT&T. “Our assets are everywhere the consumer is,” said Colaneri. “We work with a large set of retailers on their digital experiences, because we have the speed and efficiency to reach across multiple consumer demographics. Additionally, the architectural services we provide to retailers are integral to their support for mobile technology.”
Big Red Rooster
Big Red Rooster is a design and branding firm that helps customers create omnichannel experiences. The company works with retailers such as Foot Locker, Under Armour and L.L.Bean to design store interiors, graphics and more. The team at Big Red Rooster collaborates with retailers to execute immersive retail experiences and ensure store design is aligned with business objectives and customer needs.
The Bluecore retail marketing platform specializes in performance-driven email, combining a Decisioning solution and an Audience Insights dashboard to provide marketers with product-based insights on any audience segment. The platform is designed to help retailers personalize campaigns through email, e-Commerce sites, Google, online display ads and Facebook. The company recently unveiled a benchmark report establishing guidelines for assessing retail email marketing performance that Jared Blank, the company’s SVP of Marketing and Data Insights, presented at #RIC18.
Comarch is a global software provider with solutions for everything from telecoms to public administration, but the company’s U.S. focus is on travel and retail. Comarch’s loyalty management software features a wide variety of functionality, from POS enrollment to digital coupon redemption. Solutions also include microlocation capabilities, allowing retailers to pinpoint a shopper’s location and offer targeted deals. The firm’s retail customers include True Value.
Through its EnGage CMS, ComQi delivers tailored, brand-determined messages in-store through multiple digital touch points, including signage, video displays, music, interactive touchscreens, shelf-edge displays and social media. Using cloud-based technology, the CMS is designed to help retailers manage large-scale deployments while providing the capability to adjust messages to individual stores, and even to engage individual shoppers. Digital signage has been shown to increase in-store traffic, brand awareness, purchase amounts and repeat buying.
This SaaS-based loyalty program platform is designed to reward customers not just for transactions but for multiple ways they engage with a retailer or brand. CrowdTwist can track consumer actions such as reading emails, visiting a store or inviting friends to join a loyalty program. The platform collects these data points across channels, allowing retailers to make more personalized, emotional connections with their customers. Clients include Pepsi, Coty and Budweiser.
Co-Founders Joseph Scaretta and Moses Carrasco launched the project management and design firm in August 2017.CS Hudson delivers high-touch innovative services and custom-tailored solutions, offering a complete range of services for clients, from design to completion, with build projects that include commercial properties, vanilla shells, conversions and temporary pop-up stores. The company prides itself on having the expertise and scale to assist regardless of the number of brick-and-mortar locations — whether that means building 200 new locations in a region or enhancing 2,000 stores already established from coast to coast.
This platform is designed to provide retail customers with a 1-to-1 personalized experience. The Evergage solution uses machine learning combined with deep behavioral analytics to offer online shoppers content and product recommendations that are relevant to their interests, all in real time within a single online session. The Evergage solution also integrates with email capabilities for re-engagement, for example if a shopper browses a particular item but doesn’t buy. Retail clients include Rue La La, Walmart, Carhartt and Zumiez.
A referral marketing platform that activates Word Of Mouth, Extole automates the discovery of brand advocates and influencers, deploys referral tracking software to help retailers understand how advocates behave and designs referral programs tailored to each retailer. At RIC18, Extole shared detailed case studies on several of its more than 175 clients, including Blinds.com, Hanna Andersson and Ulta Beauty.
LS Direct Marketing
LS Direct Marketing aims to “redefine print media.” The company’s Boomerang Direct solution is designed to help businesses identify who visits their web site, collect their data — including their mailing address — and send personalized daily (snail) mailings to those visitors. Users can customize their programs to target specific visitors based on cart abandons, products they browse, multi-page views and single page views. A reporting dashboard allows users to track performance and test promotional offers. The company also offers a variety of other capabilities, including data analytics, creative services, campaign analysis, data visualization and more. Clients include Ashley Homestore, Wells Fargo, Value City Furniture and others.
Mad Mobile is the creator of Concierge, a mobile retail platform that helps empower associates and enables them to continue assisting shoppers even outside the store. The software helps associates anticipate customer needs, engage in one-to-one shopper experiences and keep themselves on schedule. Concierge also helps foster relationships between shoppers and associates, giving personalized offers an even more human touch.
The average consumer is exposed to approximately 5,000 advertisements a day, according to recent studies, and this means retailers must blow shoppers away with their signage to shake them out of their stupor. Dazzling large-format LED displays from NanoLumens utilize narrower pixel pitches that enable fully customizable displays to function expertly in the tighter confines of retail spaces. With the introduction of its service-based selling strategy, NanoLumens has made its LED displays more financially accessible than ever before.
Netsertive helps national retailers handle digital marketing in a hyper-local fashion. Offering tag, search, video display and a soon-to-launch beta YouTube feature, Netsertive helps large companies refine their data down to the single-store level for both company-owned and franchised locations. Its large team of hands-on experts can help retailers customize their creative and search options.
Nudge Rewards offers retailers a way to connect with their associates on a deeper level, facilitating direct communication and enabling regular micro-training to keep individual employees on top of the latest promotions and offerings. The Nudge app incentivizes staff members to engage with the brand by earning points, giving them a reason to continue their professional development.
The marketing automation platform has released Recommendations Web, a personalized product recommendations platform designed to enable marketers to automate dynamic recommendations without technical support. Using the platform, marketers can use the same set of recommendations on multiple pages, ensuring consistent branding and appearance across both a web site and emails. The company also recently partnered with Yotpo, an AI-powered customer content marketing platform, to help marketers capture and convert more shoppers with user-generated content (UGC).With the integration, Yotpo star ratings and reviews will automatically sync to product catalogs.
RedPoint Global is designed to produce a single view of the customer layered with tools for interaction. Its software solutions, including its Customer Engagement Hub and Customer Data Platform, provide one point of control to connect all customer data, determine the next best actions in real time and orchestrate interactions across all enterprise touch points. At RIC18, RedPoint unveiled its RedPoint Accelerator, which packages powerful omnichannel marketing technology, services and industry expertise for mid-size, growth-oriented retailers.
This platform allows retailers to build customized native mobile app experiences. Shopgate provides the underlying platform technology and also offers customization services. Key capabilities include geolocation functionality that allows retailers to providing segmented push notifications based on a shopper’s presence in the retailer’s store — or a competitor’s store. Other functionalities include AR and fitness trackers, designed to give users more reasons to use the app once they have downloaded it. Clients include Mizuno and City Gear.
The digital signage and analytics company completed its acquisition of Scala in February 2018, and has recently increased its emphasis on manufacturing outdoor-ready displays for large U.S. and Canadian QSR chains. The digital displays have a life expectancy of 10 years and feature a modular design, allowing all components to be operational in any location within 15 minutes or less. The fixtures are designed to operate in any environment and weather condition and include sensors that track shopper foot traffic.
Warner Bros. Design Studios
The skills Warner Bros. Design Studios has honed in its work for the entertainment industry translate seamlessly to the retail industry for both creative and fabrication services, providing everything from signage to holiday installations. Warner Bros. provides custom capabilities for elements including graphics, scenic art and photo services. The firm’s retail clients include Westfield and Nasty Gal.
Zmags is designed to help users create and publish rich digital shopping experiences for their e-Commerce platforms. The company’s Creator solution offers a drag-and-drop capability that allows users to build content and add interactivity without needing any code. The content — whether it is editorial, a product carousel, gift guides or interactive lookbooks — all can be made shoppable. Creator also enables users to adapt content to any device, edit animations, text, links and interactivity, and preview experiences before publishing. Retail customers include Neiman Marcus, Godiva and Deborah Lippmann.