Students across the country are returning to the classroom this month — some for the first time in more than a year. While early indications show strong late-summer back-to-school sales, retailers aren’t leaving anything up to chance. Widespread confusion around health policies, safety protocols, and required supplies that can vary by school are leading retailers to rely on social media and artificial intelligence to collect information on emerging themes and trends.
G2 is a software marketplace that publishes reviews from actual software users, rather than relying on industry analysis. The company recently raised $157 million in Series D funding from investors including Hubspot Ventures, Salesforce Investors, and LinkedIn.
Could highly personalized interactive video become the primary way that businesses communicate with customers in the future? That’s what the team at Idomoo is betting on. The company is launching a fully open, enterprise-grade platform called Living Video that will enable businesses to automatically update videos in real-time based on context and user input.
Despite implementing many of the same technology platforms and marketing strategies as they did in early 2020, retail brands today are shifting their approach and bringing more data intelligence solutions in-house. The strategy is part of a larger emphasis on first-party within the brand marketing community, particularly as personalization techniques grow more advanced and privacy changes make targeting harder.
“Between Covid-19 altering consumer buying behaviors and accelerating the growth of e-commerce, specifically in retail media, consumers have higher expectations than ever when it comes to customer experience,” Vibenomics CSO Paul Brenner says. “Implementing AOOH into retail media plans allows retailers to deliver a personalized, one-to-few shopping experience consumers now expect.”
The so-called “buy and return loop” that stores faced during the height of the pandemic is back, and it’s a major burden for fashion retailers across the country. According to Britt Mills, senior director of customer experience at the digital consultancy Mobiquity, more shoppers are being forced to skip the dressing room due to in-store safety protocols, and since they can’t try on items, that leads to a higher likelihood of returns.
School supplies and backpacks should be flying off the shelves right now, but growing concerns over the Covid-19 Delta variant are prompting more families to hold off on back-to-school shopping and make essential purchases online.
With Covid-19 Delta variant cases on the rise, social distancing and sanitation have once again become top priorities for consumers. According to new data by Avionos, consumers are growing increasingly wary of shopping in physical stores due to the rise of the Delta variant. Among those consumers who shopped with a new brand during the pandemic, almost one-third cited safe in-store experiences as a top reason for choosing that brand.
Marketing strategies, and the data they run on, face systemic risk in 2021. More than ever before, marketers’ access to customer data is being cut off by increased privacy restrictions from governments and private gatekeepers alike.
With much of the $664 billion advertising market in flux, there’s a renewed focus on omnichannel platforms that use integrated workflows to improve efficiencies and reduce redundant work. This next generation of ad buying solutions takes into account disparate channels and audiences, enabling brand marketers to automate and optimize campaigns across ecosystems.
QR codes are finding new life as businesses adapt to the ongoing pandemic. Consumers seeking out touchless payment opportunities and businesses wanting the ability to integrate more tools for tracking and analytics are embracing the technology with a level of enthusiasm we haven’t seen before.
More advertisers are taking control of their media spend, and they’re looking for better ways to have direct involvement in the use of first-party data to improve ad performance. Those are just a few of the findings in a new report by Kantar looking at the latest behaviors, attitudes, and trends in the digital advertising space.
The autonomous retail sector is booming, and brick-and-mortars are getting curious about how to free up their employees’ time and foster new experiences to lure customers in store.
Brand loyalty is changing, and it might not necessarily be for the worst. Despite dire predictions earlier in the pandemic that consumers would be more likely to opt for alternative brands, a new survey by the location intelligence firm Ubimo paints a very different picture.
Retail technology platforms that may have been overlooked before the pandemic are now coming into focus as businesses begin to understand their true value. Using a combination of artificial intelligence, machine learning, IoT, and big data, a number of startups have started positioning their platforms as possible solutions to the labor shortages that retailers and restaurants are facing in 2021. Mobile ordering kiosks, autonomous checkout systems, and even machine vision algorithms are all being used to help businesses greet customers, restock shelves, and even clean messy areas with more efficiency.
Permission.io CEO Charlie Silver sees blockchain technology as one of the best mechanisms for issuing digital rewards in the form of cryptocurrency, and he says the ability to issue a desirable reward is essential for those brands that want to succeed in the next era of permission-based digital advertising.
In a nod to just how mainstream blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Dogecoin have become, 44% of people now say they’d like to receive loyalty rewards in the form of digital assets. By offering digital currencies as an alternative to cash-back rewards, retailers are helping their programs stand out and bringing curious shoppers back into their stores.
Brands that don’t want to be seen as “digital laggards” will need to deploy omnichannel strategies to meet consumers where they are, pairing the digital innovations of the Covid era with effective brick-and-mortar customer experiences.
Without accurate ways to measure and monitor the success of influencer campaigns, most brand marketers are left sitting in the dark. And many of the metrics used to track the success of campaigns on traditional advertising channels don’t work with influencer marketing, where context is everything and the volume of brand mentions can be deceiving. The data company Sama thinks it has a solution.
On its face, it looks a lot like pre-pandemic life has resumed. Behind the scenes, though, many businesses are frantically searching for ways to welcome back guests at full capacity without sacrificing safety.