As retail technology, social media and mobility have seriously shifted the consumer mindset and shopper expectations, retailers are challenged to stay ahead of the curve by leveraging these concepts as part of a successfully executed multi-channel strategy.
Taking a cue from the trends, The National Retail Federation (NRF) is hosting Innovate 2011 March 8-10, 2011 at the Concourse Exhibition Center in San Francisco. The newly branded event is a fusion of the Shop.org Strategy and Innovation Conference and the Retail Advertising Conference (RAC).
Executives from Radio Shack, Steve Madden, JCPenney and Tiny Prints will share their insights on the latest retail marketing trends and topics, including the obstacles and approaches to successfully marketing to shoppers.
Next Generation Retail Innovations
The conversations around social media for retail are no longer relegated to basic engagement strategies. While the industry has graduated to exploring new concepts, including “F-Commerce” (Facebook Commerce), insiders agree that it’s time to soar past social media 101 to new concepts. During Innovate 2011, Jay Feitlinger of StringCan Interactive, an Arizona-based marketing agency, will explore the next step of commerce in his session, “How Facebook Credits Will Grow Real World Retail.”
Facebook Credits can empower customers to purchase products in a variety of different verticals via Facebook. Session attendees will learn how Facebook Credits extend beyond social commerce applications to allow shoppers to purchase products from brick-and-mortar retail stores. Facebook offers retailers numerous possibilities for customer loyalty and reward programs. Don’t be surprised if consumers start trading in their Visa cards for a Facebook Credit Card, according to NRF.
During another session, building on the success of Steve Madden’s mobile initiatives, Director of e-Commerce Andrew Koven will share his viewpoints on mobile commerce and mobile marketing, including the technologies, the consumer experience, and the need for marketers to establish plans and communicate the expectations of what mobile can do for their businesses.
Other conference sessions include “The Future Of Retail: The VD Perspective,” “Fact or Fiction: Is the Digital Ecosystem the Future of Retail?” and “The Art of Innovation,” presented by Guy Kawasaki, Founder, Alltop.com.
Racie Awards to Honor Best-in-Class
The Racie Awards Luncheon will be held during Innovate 2011 to honor retailers that have achieved successful strategy, creativity and results in advertising. Two rounds of judges will assess the qualitative metrics in terms of lift/increase against controls or standards, response rates or ROI.
The Awards are broken down into 22 categories, in addition to the special “Peter Glen Cause Marketing Award,” which since 1994 has honored retailers that have given back to the community or environment in a unique way. Judges also will select a winner for the “Best of the Best Award.”
2011 award categories include:
- Web Site Experience
- Social Commerce
- Mobile Apps
- In-Store Display, non-digital
- Gift Cards