DATA: We talked about many of the topics clients and agencies of all sizes grapple with every day -- issues that reflect a rapidly changing approach to building brands and growing revenues. At the end of the night, everyone around the dinner table acknowledged the same conclusions -- that not even the smartest CMOs have all of the answers, and that even if you do believe you have it all figured out, tomorrow everything changes.
ECOMMERCE: With unrivalled brand awareness, a superior eCommerce platform and shipping offering, success in the clothing retail sector isn’t beyond its means by any stretch. Above all, the retailer’s approach to customer centricity has earned it a loyal following. No matter what sector Amazon is operating in, customers are placed at the core; from making relevant product suggestions based on their behaviour and preferences, to the service they receive.
ECOMMERCE: Led by companies like Oculus Rift, more than $700 million was invested in the VR industry last year. Goldman Sachs recently predicted that the VR market could be worth upwards of $80 billion by 2025. With so much of the discussion focused on gaming and entertainment, innovative retailers are just starting to consider what VR means for brands. E-commerce giant Alibaba has launched its own VR research lab to integrate VR into the shopping experience. In a few years, consumers are going to expect this technology the way they now expect free shipping and returns.
ECOMMERCE: According to a recent study, more than two-thirds of consumers cite bad experiences as reason for not returning to a retailer, while 55 percent of consumers are willing to pay more for a guaranteed great experience. nChannel’s partnership with Shopify Plus helps deliver a dramatically different solution for the enterprise market, so IT becomes an asset and not a distraction for merchants. With this platform, retailers can focus on design, conversion and marketing – and ultimately deliver a better consumer experience.
ADTECH: Facebook Inc. is looking to help retailers bridge the online/offline divide by rolling out new ad formats that aim to drive consumers to physical stores and help retailers measure the impact of those ads. With 82% of Facebook’s advertising revenue stemming from ads that appear on consumers’ mobile devices, which they frequently carry with them, the social network is promoting its ads as an effective way to link online and offline marketing. And it’s adding tools to help retailers better understand how Facebook ads lead to store traffic and sales, says a Facebook spokesman.
ECOMMERCE: Total retail sales increased a relatively healthy 2.5% in May compared with May 2015, the U.S. Commerce Department reported today, and nonstore sales increased 12.2%. That nonstore growth was the fastest of any month in 2016. Nonstore sales occur mainly on the web but also include categories of retail sales that are declining, such as mail and phone orders and door-to-door sales. Thus, the growth in nonstore sales is consistently lower than the growth in e-commerce sales, which the Commerce Department reports quarterly.
ECOMMERCE: Symbiosis has become strained as shopping shifts online and consumer tastes lean away from some of P&G’s iconic brands to less expensive alternatives.Wal-Mart is spending billions on e-commerce and higher store employee wages. At the same time, it is pressuring suppliers to reduce the price of bestsellers as it tries to keep pace with Amazon.com Inc. and a slate of discount chains. The turmoil has led Wal-Mart to close stores, shrink inventory and push suppliers, including P&G, for concessions.
ADTECH: Advertisers can make the most of the cartoonish icons by targeting consumers who have tweeted or engaged with tweets that feature emoji. That means someone in Chicago who tweets a pizza emoji can now be targeted by a local restaurant to come in for a delicious slice of deep dish. More than 110 billion emojis have been tweeted since 2014, according to Twitter, which says they can signal a person's mood or mindset, "unlocking unique opportunities for marketers and brands."
MEDIA: The Pew Center study, which was released on Wednesday, has more detail on how the print newspaper business has been decimated by the shift to digital. Last year, the sector “had perhaps the worst year since the recession,” the study notes, and even the industry’s online efforts aren’t really helping much. Average circulation — print and digital combined — fell another 7% in 2015, the largest drop since 2010. Total advertising revenue fell by nearly 8%, including both print and digital.
MEDIA: Magazines deliver by far the best return on ad spending when compared to TV, digital display and video, mobile and cross-media campaigns, according to a study set to be presented today by Nielsen Catalina Solutions at the Advertising Research Foundation Audience Measurement 2016 Conference in New York. The medium delivering the lowest return in the study is digital video, arguably the hottest for CPG marketers and for much of the marketing world.
ECOMMERCE: Amazon Prime membership has several benefits, chief among them two-day shipping. The e-tailing giant has created such an expectation for this particular perk that competitors like Jet.com and Walmart have their own two-day shipping programs. And with the roll-out of Prime Now, which guarantees same-day delivery, and plans for drone delivery—still a bit of a pipe dream—it seems likely that the company will continue to pressure competitors into getting goods out faster.
DATA: Apple has yet to confirm rumors it’s building a car but it is aiming to make drivers’ lives a little easier thanks to a new feature coming to Apple Maps in iOS 10 which will help people remember where they parked their car. The forthcoming parking reminder, spotted by an AppleInsider reader, will automatically drop a pin to locate the car’s stationary location when a journey terminates somewhere other than the user’s home address.