Reuters reports that Walmart's Scan & Go mobile app, which is currently available in 70 stores, will soon be extended to upwards of 200. The new self-checkout platform, which was released for testing in September, allows iPhone users to scan items as they shop and then pay at checkout via an app-generated QR code.
Walmart has a long and storied history of dominating the physical retail space. With Amazon's recent expansions encroaching on Walmart's home turf, however, the big box titan has undergone a discernible transformation in marketing strategy. Slow... Read More >
On May 23 the share price for Sears Holdings Corporation (SHLD.O) took a nose dive, plummeting 12% to $51.41 per share in after-hours trading. The disappointing results came mere months after chairman and controlling shareholder Eddie Lampert assumed the position of CEO, when Louis D'Ambrosio stepped down due to a family member's health.
The drastic decline in stock value followed sluggish first-quarter earnings results, which greatly underperformed most analysts'estimates. The company demonstrated deteriorating performance to its top and bottom lines; w... Read More >
The influx of smart devices (phones, tablets, etc) has precipitated an exponentially larger influx of apps. With more than 400 million people predicted to own smart TVs by 2016, the trend of "appification" presents a profound opportunity for brands, media companies, and content creators. But surprisingly, very few companies show signs of rethinking their content strategies for Smart TV consumption. Opportunity may be knocking, but there doesn't seem to be anyone at the door.
To be fair, some portion of the skepticism regarding the value of technology is j... Read More >
Synqera, a Russia-based provider of personalized multi-channel communications, has released a new study on in-store consumer shopping habits. This Monday, Synqera unveiled the Synqera Loyalty Generator: a connected in-store device that helps brick & mortar retailers shorten the path topurchase, combat showrooming, and foster customer loyalty.
Synqera's chief aim is harnessing big data to bring a personalized digital experience to the physical retail space. Today, Synqera released a new study on the habits and preferences of American shoppers. The results ... Read More >
DirecTV joined the growing ranks of traditional-cable-service disruptors this week, announcing its intent to explore a new set-top box configuration that would side-step the high retransmission fees enforced by broadcast networks.
Not two months after losing to Aereo in appellate court, broadcasters may be up for yet another battle. This week, DirecTV CFO Patrick Doyle stated that the satellite provider has developed a legal way to avoidpaying carriage costs for local stations – but the Big Four and other broadcasters bank on those retransmission consent... Read More >
Consumers want more than a product - they want a great experience along with it. Determined to deliver, retailers have spent serious time searching for new ways to evangelize their brand. Some have even gone guerrilla, taking their marketing campaigns to the street.
Last week the Wall Street Journal ran an article on the topic, claiming "Online apparel retailers are finding that showing their clothing on real people causes customers to engage more and buy more often." Their example: A 21 year old USC student attended the Coachella music festival with her ... Read More >
The Container Store wasn't pulling any punches when it chose its name: it literally sells containers. From compartmentalized storage containers to luggage, travel totes to laptop bags and handbags, The Container Store covers the whole gamut.
Founded in 1978, The Container Store has been around for long enough to be named to Fortune's list of the "100 Best Companies to Work For." Not once or twice, but twelve times - including two years at number one. To paraphrase the words of one online reviewer, 'The Container Store is more of a guilty pleasure than a n... Read More >
"A business has to be involving, it has to be fun, and it has to exercise your creative instincts."At Marketsmith, we took Sir Branson's words literally! Last summer we sponsored a juice reboot in the office, and this summer we're implementing some more fun, healthy initiatives. Yoga Wednesdays: Meant to invigorate the soul, calm the nervous system, and curb negative thoughts, yoga is a great way for the MSI team to feel free to be ourselves amongst our peers and look at ourselves with acceptance (even as we ... Read More >
Last year, Monica C. Smith penned a chapter entitled "Numbers: the Secret Sauce to Consumer Marketing" for the book Big Bold Business Advice: Jersey Women Mean Business! The book, including chapters from 72 female business owners in New Jersey, has won an Axiom award in the Women/ Minorities in Business category. The Axiom Business Book Awards were formed with the goal of “Recognizing and promoting the world’s best business titles.”
Monica’s chapter includes valuable advice on how to maximize return on marketing spend. In the video below, she ... Read More >
In the wake of the recent surge in same-day delivery initiatives led by Amazon and Google, eBay has quietly rolled out a one-hour delivery service in several major cities. The eBay Now app gives users near-instant gratification, shipping purchases within a single hour courtesy of eBay's partnerships with Best Buy, Macy's, Target, and other retail power-players.
eBay Now first launched (in beta) in San Francisco during August 2012. Now available as an app, the service is available for download in New York, San Francisco, and San Jose. Chicago and Dallas ar... Read More >
Twitter took another step forward in large scale computing today, acquiring the scalable computing technology startup Ubalo. Earlier today (in true Social Media style) Ubalo CEO Jacob Mattingly and CTO Ian Downes announced the acquisition via blog post.
Welcome to the flock. “@ubalo: We've got some exciting news: The Ubalo team is joining Twitter. Read more: ubalo.com.”— Twitter Engineering (@TwitterEng) May 9, 2013
Ubalo was first formed in 2011, under the ambiguous title of an "early-st... Read More >
It's only logical that fast food restaurants are looking for faster payment methods: Wendy's is leading the way with mobile payments via their application. Creativity Online: Coke Zero's Handpainted Masterpieces
The world's largest Words With Friends game, sponsored by Crystal Light, occurred on May 8th. The campaign caught a lot of publicity from the online community, including this blogger's recap: AdAge: YouTube Launches Paid Channels
Brooks Brothers may not be an overly promotional brand, but their tie-in to the release of The Great Gats... Read More >
"We are held hostage at any given moment by health insurance companies" -President Barack Obama, 2009
In most industries, rising revenues are seen as a good thing. Growth and increased opportunity rarely get bad publicity - least of all during recessionary times. Unfortunately, some view rising revenues in the insurance industry as a nation-wide problem. Naturally, this makes advertising a difficult proposition. One insurance provider, however, may hold the ultimate secret to success.
"We have a very straightforward s... Read More >
One of the marks of a great brand is how they respond to mistakes in customer service, in messaging, or in strategy. JCP has released an apology to their consumers after the termination of CEO Ron Johnson, stating they have heard the feedback and are making it right.
We have often revisited the journey JCP is taking (in February and July 2012), hoping the brand can refresh and realign in order to thrive in the current consumer environment. Under Ron Johnson they adapted to current consumer trends, but were too aggressive and neglected their loyal customer... Read More >
This Monday, the Senate passed a bill to increase the ease with which states collect tax for online purchases. The Marketplace Fairness Act - which passed 69 to 27 - still must pass the Republican controlled House and receive President Obama's signature. Even so, it has already been cause forclamor amongst mid-tier online retailers who will likely be the hardest hit by its effects. If passed, the bill would require online retailers with sales at or above $1 million to collect sales taxes for the states to whichthey ship goods. According to the U.S. Department of Co... Read More >
According to the 2012 Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide, apparel brands grew their ecommerce sales faster than any other consumer goods manufacturers. What's more, apparel brands account for 7 of the 10 fastest-growing manufacturers.
In the last decade, 10 of the 16 fastest-growing brand manufacturers (as ranked by Internet Retailer) have come from the apparel/accessories market sector – despite manufacturers as a whole seeing their share of Top 500 sales decrease since 2004. In the 2013 Top 500 Guide, however, brand manufacturers' 2012 web sales ($25.4 b... Read More >