Retail Online Integration May/June 2012
As the price of postage continues to rise, it's time for B-to-B marketers to get out there and actively explore new ways to reach their customers who bypass the USPS. It's time to consider digital catalogs as part of your media mix.
Review the space ads you're placing now. What's the single thought you want consumers to have when they see your ad? Is there an offer? A deadline for the offer? Is it clear what you want readers to do after looking at the ad? If you're not sure, don't hesitate to reach out for a quick critique. With a stronger campaign in place, make every ad dollar you spend work its hardest!
Despite all the buzz around social media, mobile apps, tablets and "the cloud," email is arguably the king of the online marketing mountain. Since around 1993, email has demonstrated a unique ability to connect with both new and current customers in a way no other channel can. In fact, according to ExactTarget, more than 93 percent of online consumers have provided their email address to at least one company or brand.
"Cabela's existing customers are our best brand advocates," said Derek Fontana, internet marketing manager for Cabela's, in a press release. "Supporting their ability to share their experiences and engage others through social channels is an effective way to create brand affinity and loyalty."
Critically, it's time to admit that attributing the full value of the marketing investment to the last or "converting" click is fundamentally flawed. By ignoring all previous activities which have contributed to the eventual sale, this approach is inaccurate, untrustworthy and often results in investment in key activities being reduced or cut.
Mobile isn't just a useful tool in a retailer's toolkit anymore; it's an essential element of successful multichannel marketing, engagement and loyalty initiatives. The mobile internet — the mobile web, native applications, hybrid platforms and web apps — is fundamentally changing the way businesses can interact, engage and monetize their relationship with consumers.
Search data provides marketers with the best understanding of consumer intent through what's essentially a large, real-time focus group. To best understand your audience though you should also layer in the data you have about your customers, your site's performance and other third-party data.
Despite all the buzz around social media over the past several years, the concept of "real" social commerce — when consumers can actually buy merchandise directly from whichever social network they're visiting and wherever they happen to be — has eluded the industry.
Clear your throat, put down your mouse, take your fingers off the touchscreen; retail is primed to be the next industry to use the spoken word as the interface between consumers and technology. Driving this innovation in large part is the prevalence of smartphones today and, in turn, the growth of mobile commerce.
Urban Outfitters is betting that providing its online visitors a more personalized experience will increase its chances of converting them into customers. The retailer has tested customized product recommendations as well as segmenting its audience to deliver different experiences to different segments.
Everything you do, everything you say, everything you are — and I mean everything — is a direct reflection of your brand. All of these things need to be managed and controlled, but in a way that doesn't seem managed and controlled. Sound difficult? It is. That's why so few brands actually do it well.
Retail Online Integration presents its second annual ranking of the fastest-growing cross-channel retailers based on year-over-year sales. Find out if your company — or one of its competitors — made the list.
Tiny Prints, a brand of Shutterfly that sells chic photo cards, personalized stationery, and stylish greeting cards and holiday cards, is finding great success — and new prospects — with its affiliate marketing program.
Don't make the user confirm. If you do, you'll lose more than 40 percent to 60 percent of your sign-ups on average, sometimes more depending on your category and/or your target demographics.