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Retail Trends

Retail Trends: Defining Your Strategic Roadmap

The retail industry today is more exciting than ever. With increases in technological advances, shopping has become a part of consumers’ everyday lives. Now, they can shop anytime and anywhere at their own convenience. The modern shopper is always in control, always in the “driver’s seat.” And they expect to have their shopping needs met by the brands they choose.

According to Kelly Bransten in Microsoft and PSFK’s eBook, “Success in this new era is dependent on understanding and anticipating the needs of customers at every stage of the retail journey.”

In order to ensure future success, brands need to find ways to capitalize on the emerging trends in the retail industry.

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Create Raving Fans

Shoppers want a customer-first kind of experience. And, with increased technology, brands are now able to gather valuable consumer data to help them accomplish exactly that. Consumers today are more open to sharing their data with brands, but they expect a more personalized shopping experience in return.

To deliver a more exceptional experience using customer data, brands first need to understand what kind of information is necessary. Once they have gathered the appropriate data, brand marketers should send personalized recommendations that address the individual needs of the shopper. These recommendations can be delivered electronically as emails or physically in the form of creative, attractive direct mailers. When customers feel their individual needs have been met by your brand, they’ll be more likely to make purchases in the future, and to recommend your brand to others.

Consumers are more likely to give out personal information to brands when they feel they will receive exceptional service in return. So, one way to incentivize customers to share their personal data is to offer exchange benefits such as discounts, loyalty points, and access to special, recommended deals. This exchange of information also helps establish trust between the customer and brand marketer, resulting in a higher conversion of raving fans for the brand.

Consumers today are more open to sharing their data with brands, but they expect a more personalized shopping experience in return.

Ensure Positive Brand-Customer Interactions

In the retail industry, it is extremely important for customers to have positive interactions with brand representatives. As a result, brands need to focus on training employees to be knowledgeable, so that they can provide accurate information when discussing their products with shoppers. They also need to be equipped and ready to present useful solutions to any problem. When brand representatives are passionate about the products they’re selling, they are positively impacting the minds of potential buyers.

As the experts at Microsoft and PSFK explain, “Despite collecting a variety of insights on individual shoppers from their online browsing behaviors, purchase history, loyalty membership and location, most companies fail to develop this information into an actionable customer view.”

Brands need to know how to effectively capitalize on customer data in order to drive sales and increase revenue. And they can do exactly that when they have well-trained, knowledgeable employees representing their brand.

When customers leave your store feeling satisfied with their interaction, they are more likely to shop with your brand again, and to recommend your superior service to friends and family members.

Positive interaction with brand representatives will impact the minds of potential buyers.

Capitalize on Advances in Technology

Some brands are differentiating themselves by implementing data-driven initiatives that help them offer innovative products that have not previously been introduced to the market. They are able to do so by analyzing customer preferences and shopping patterns.

To more effectively fulfill customers’ expectations, some brands are utilizing customer relationship management (CRM) systems to unify their customer journeys across all channels. These systems notify employees when a shopper has entered the store, and then automatically trigger the delivery of recommendations. With this technological approach, brand employees are instantaneously informed of the arrival of a new customer, enabling them to more efficiently provide personalized service and assist the customer in their shopping process. This empowers brands to achieve more sales as well as higher customer satisfaction rates.

Brands should conduct Research and Development with customer needs always at the top of mind. By logging consumers’ in-store behaviors, interactions with products and employees, shopping patterns, and feedback, brands can develop a deeper understanding of their customers’ shopping needs. Using this understanding, they are able to respond better to the nuances of their shoppers, thus improving the customer experience.

By analyzing customer preferences and shopping patterns to develop a proactive, personalized approach will empower brands to achieve more sales as well as higher customer satisfaction rates.

Conclusion

The retail industry is changing, and new trends are emerging. In order to remain profitable in this new age, retail brands need to adapt to these changes and find ways to capitalize on them.

Personalizing the customer experience to meet shoppers’ individual needs, ensuring that your employees have the training and knowledge necessary to engage in positive interactions with consumers, and effectively utilizing technological advances to your marketing advantage are important steps you can take as a brand marketer in order to flourish in this ever-changing market. By understanding these useful actions, retail brands are more likely to remain profitable and ensure a successful future for their business.

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Why NVISION?

NVISION® is a marketing execution company helping Fortune 1000 organizations optimize their marketing supply chain process. We provide the expertise to simplify the creation, procurement, fulfillment, distribution and ongoing account management for customers’ printed marketing materials.

With nearly 100 years of supply chain management expertise in streamlining operations, leveraging buying power and creating innovative solutions, we reduce cost and increase speed-to-market. NVISION provides dedicated experts that understand clients’ brand standards, internal processes, deadlines, and distribution needs.

We manage every step of the process to deliver marketing operations – simplified.

See how NVISION can help your business | Let’s start a conversation about your complimentary assessment!

How the Wine Industry is Shifting
to Connect with Customers

Wine companies invest significant resources in conducting studies to learn what customers look for when shopping for their ideal wine.

However, it’s becoming more and more evident that many wine consumers don’t actually know what they want in a bottle of wine. Consequently, these efforts usually bring wine brands with little useful insight and only wasted money.

According to Gregory Carpenter and Ashlee Humphreys at Harvard Business Review, there is a more effective approach to gearing your brand towards consumers – educating and engaging with them. If most customers don’t know enough about wine to know what they want to buy, wine brands need to take the initiative and proactively inform them.

So, how can wine companies successfully engage with their customers?

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Influence Customers’ Tastes

Many businesses aim to meet customers’ needs through their products. However, in the wine industry, many customers don’t know enough about wine to have predictable preferences. So, how can wine companies know what to produce to satisfy consumers’ desires?

Wine companies can use their expertise in the industry to give shoppers what they want before they even realize they want it. Brands can put a personal touch on their products by producing wines that they want to bring to market, rather than reacting to consumers’ preferences.

The most effective approach to success for winemakers is to influence the tastes of their customers. By coming up with innovative labels, branding and marketing planning, and products, wine brands can attract customers and drive sales for their products.

The most effective approach to success for winemakers is to influence the tastes of their customers.

Develop Relationships with Industry Influencers

Certain critics and influencers have strong product views that can affect buyers’ decision-making processes. So, what’s the best way to capitalize on critics’ positions of power in the market? Impress them with a truly superior brand experience.

Creating a smart and innovative atmosphere where critics and social media influencers can experience and taste your brand’s wines will increase brand awareness and demand for your products. At the same time, it will enable you to develop long-lasting, profitable business relationships with influential figures.

As a result of the growing relationships with wine-industry critics, wine companies can use those reviews and ratings to better market their products and drive sales for their brand.

Engage with critics and social influencers to increase brand awareness and demand for your products.

Build Brand Loyalty with Shared Customer Experiences

Consumers seek advice by reading reviews and ratings. If wine companies want to wow shoppers, they need to focus on displaying these factors that can sway customers’ decision-making process.

The trick is creating a brand experience that is truly superior to the competition. As Carpenter and Humphreys explain, “Consumers become fans and pay premium prices, despite the availability of literally thousands of excellent alternatives.” When your customers believe that they are purchasing the best of the best, they will be willing to pay more.

The in-store display can be an excellent way to promote your products. Having a vibrant yet elegant display stating positive reviews and comments by influencers and customers will help accelerate your product sales by swaying the purchase decisions of customers. Sometimes too much information is better than lack of one, especially not many customers have expert knowledge when it comes to selecting a bottle of wine.

And they will keep coming back for the same brand and products in the future, hence, growing brand loyalty.

Wine companies can build a strong fan base by emphasizing the positive ratings and reviews to help navigate the customer’s buying decision.

Conclusion

Wine brands are discovering new ways to reach their customers. Instead of wasting money and resources surveying shoppers to learn about their wine preferences, they are focusing on influencing consumers with innovative products and creative packaging, and through influencer marketing.

Recommendations and strong reviews by influencers are an essential part of the decision-making process for modern-day consumers. By understanding the thought processes of shoppers, wine brands can help navigate them to make the right decision. As a result, it will create a fan base of customers who will remain loyal to your brand and increase your brand’s footprint in the market.

 

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Why NVISION?

NVISION® is a marketing execution company helping Fortune 1000 organizations optimize their marketing supply chain process. We provide the expertise to simplify the creation, procurement, fulfillment, distribution and ongoing account management for customers’ printed marketing materials.

With nearly 100 years of supply chain management expertise in streamlining operations, leveraging buying power and creating innovative solutions, we reduce cost and increase speed-to-market. NVISION provides dedicated experts that understand clients’ brand standards, internal processes, deadlines, and distribution needs.

We manage every step of the process to deliver marketing operations – simplified.

See how NVISION can help your business | Let’s start a conversation about your complimentary assessment!

2020 Shopper Marketing: Are You Ready For This New Wave of Consumers?

Due to advances in technology and society, the way that consumers shop is radically changing. And consequently, according to Robert I. Tomei at IRI, the future is looking up for marketers.

Analysts predict to characterize the 2020 shopper by multicultural diversity, age, and technology.

Hispanic consumers, as well as Millennials, are beginning to dominate the shopping world. And the majority of them are using their smartphones or laptops to do it.

So, how can marketers and businesses prepare for the 2020 shopper?

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Use Digital Platforms to Better Meet the 2020 Shopper’s Needs

More and more 2020 shoppers turn to their smartphones first before making a purchase in order to compare prices and search for different products. However, many of them do still prefer shopping at brick and mortar stores where they can actually see and feel a product before purchasing it.

The best method for marketers is to combine these two experiences. The first step is to build a strong online platform that drives customers into the store. Then, establish a positive connection in store to keep them engaged and satisfied with their purchases, so they’ll keep coming back.

Use digital platforms as well as legacy marketing assets to appeal to the habits of the 2020 shopper. The better in sync your physical and digital marketing efforts are, the stronger your brand will be in their minds.

Meeting the customers where they are comfortable – a strong online platform – to drive them into the store to establish a positive in-store connection is a critical step for marketers to be prepared for the 2020 Shopper. 

Employ Marketing Techniques that Relate Specifically to the 2020 Shopper

As Tomei explains, “There is no such thing as a simple, one-size-fits-all marketing and sales strategy in today’s rapidly changing marketplace.”

To succeed, Tomei suggests marketers need to do three things:

  1. Understand the emerging 2020 shopper.
  2. Use their preferred digital platforms and channels to engage with them.
  3. Drive them into retail stores for experiences that convert.

The 2020 shopper is looking for a customized experience, one that’s tailored to their needs. The easier the process is for them to find and purchase what they need, the more satisfied they will be. And the more likely they will return, as a result.

The 2020 shopper is looking for a customized experience, one that’s tailored to their needs.

Remain Up to Speed with Market Changes

The 2020 shopper is shaping up to be different from the kinds of consumer groups that previously dominated the market, and therefore will respond differently to legacy marketing strategies and assets. For this reason, new tactics will need to be employed to reach them.

Marketers must remain agile to the constant changes that occur within the consumer industry and react swiftly by taking advantage of new ways to reach customers as they are made available.

The success of your brand depends on how well you can adapt and utilize these changes. A flexible supply chain and responsive marketing operations will be critical.

Marketers must remain agile to the constant changes that occur within the consumer industry.

Conclusion

The 2020 shopper is going to be more diverse, younger, and more connected to technology than previous consumers. By taking advantage of these factors, marketers can relate directly to the 2020 shopper and offer a customized, streamlined consumer experience that meets their unique demands and keeps them loyal to your brand.

By working with a partner who can help you prepare for the 2020 shopper and take advantage of new methods to reach them, your brand can compete in the ever-changing consumer market, instead of being left in the dust.

 

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Why NVISION?

NVISION® is a marketing execution company helping Fortune 1000 organizations optimize their marketing supply chain process. We provide the expertise to simplify the creation, procurement, fulfillment, distribution and ongoing account management for customers’ printed marketing materials.

With nearly 100 years of supply chain management expertise in streamlining operations, leveraging buying power and creating innovative solutions, we reduce cost and increase speed-to-market. NVISION provides dedicated experts that understand clients’ brand standards, internal processes, deadlines, and distribution needs.

We manage every step of the process to deliver marketing operations – simplified.

See how NVISION can help your business | Let’s start a conversation about your complimentary assessment!

Three CPG Market Trends to Watch Out for
in 2019 and Beyond

The consumer packaged goods market is constantly evolving. While the use of technology remains an integral part of customer outreach, it’s most effective when partnered with physical marketing tactics.

This is creating new challenges for brand marketers when it comes to driving the customer in-store through an online platform and personalizing their experience through brick-and-mortar methods to improve conversion rates. The better their in-store experience, the more loyal they’ll grow to your brand.

According to Deloitte in their 2019 Consumer Products Outlook report, “The continued growth of direct-to-consumer brands, the reemergence of pop-up stores, and online retailers developing a brick-and-mortar presence are all accelerated by the deployment of disruptive technologies, creating more avenues for brands to have a dialogue with consumers.”

So, what can brand marketers do to drive sales and maximize profits in coming years?

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Open Pop-Up Stores

Pop-up stores are trending in 2019. In pop-up stores, customers can directly engage with your brand without you having to invest in the overhead costs of a conventional retail store.

The temporary nature of pop-up stores creates a fun experience that gets customers excited to shop. With every single item “available for a limited time only” by default, pop-ups evoke a sense of urgency to shoppers to make more purchases.

Pop-up stores are especially beneficial during peak sales times, such as the holidays. They present a great opportunity to utilize physical marketing materials like creative signage and POS displays to drive customers into your store and increase demand.

Pop-up stores present a great opportunity for brands to interact with customers in a fun and alternative environment without the conventional store setting.

Establish Both Online and Brick-and-Mortar Presences

In 2019, a number of exclusively online brands are developing brick-and-mortar stores. There’s no denying that the majority of customers prefer to “experience” products before making purchases, and the best way to capitalize on that is to open physical stores.

Deloitte’s report explains, “From an e-retailer’s point of view, the benefits of having a presence in physical stores can include:

  • Minimizing costs associated with product marketing, delivery, and returns.
  • Being able to access shopping data.
  • Centralizing procurement of niche/regional products and merchandising.”

Traditional stores are also important because directly engaging with customers is the most effective way to learn what they prefer in a retail shopping experience.

Then, you can personalize the experience and tailor it to them. It’s just not possible to give customers that same level of brand connection through e-commerce alone.

The majority of customers prefer to “experience” products before making purchases, and the best way to capitalize on that is to open physical stores.

Focus on Smart Brand Packaging

Modern-day shoppers are growing increasingly conscious of what’s inside the items they purchase. As a result, smart packaging is a significant new trend that is beginning to dominate the consumer packaged goods industry.

Smart packaging involves creating labels that detail the contents and related health benefits of a product. Specialty items such as those that are organic, gluten-free, and fair-trade are attractive to modern consumers. So, packaging that conveniently and clearly shows these features can drive higher sales.

This is a potential avenue to target consumers’ lifestyle preferences, which in turn creates more chances to build brand loyalty. Essentially, if the customers trust your product, the more likely they are to keep buying it.

By coupling the opening of physical retail stores with the right kind of physical marketing assets, your brand can reach new consumer audiences while simultaneously maintaining the loyalty of your current ones.

By coupling the opening of physical retail stores with the right kind of physical marketing assets, your brand can reach new consumer audiences while simultaneously maintaining the loyalty of your current ones.

Conclusion

New trends are dominating the market in 2019 and forecasted to continue driving the retail industry into the next level. Pop-up stores are providing a fun, temporary environment that drives demand generation among shoppers. Online brands are opening up physical stores to give customers the full “experience.” And the revolution of smart packaging is changing the way brands communicate product value to audiences.

By understanding these emerging market trends, brands can thrive on new opportunities by directly engaging with consumers through various touchpoints in their retail journey.

And by working with a trusted partner who can help you take advantage of these new opportunities in market trends, your brand can compete on the quality and effectiveness of delivering value to your customers.

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Why NVISION?

NVISION® is a marketing execution company helping Fortune 1000 organizations optimize their marketing supply chain process. We provide the expertise to simplify the creation, procurement, fulfillment, distribution and ongoing account management for customers’ printed marketing materials.

With nearly 100 years of supply chain management expertise in streamlining operations, leveraging buying power and creating innovative solutions, we reduce cost and increase speed-to-market. NVISION provides dedicated experts that understand clients’ brand standards, internal processes, deadlines, and distribution needs.

We manage every step of the process to deliver marketing operations – simplified.

See how NVISION can help your business | Let’s start a conversation about your complimentary assessment!

Looking Ahead: What Winning Customer Experiences Will Look Like in 2020

With 2018 in the books and 2019 officially here, smart brands have already begun looking forward to 2020, and the biggest trends for the coming year. And one of the most significant areas where brands are looking to set themselves apart from the competition is with personalized customer experiences.

In fact, according to a recent report by Econsultancy:

  • 86% of customers prefer brands that offer personalized experiences, even if that brand isn’t the cheapest.
  • 73% of customers call customer experience an “important factor” in their purchasing decisions.
  • 65% of customers say that good customer experiences are more important than good advertising.

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So, how can savvy marketers and brand directors capitalize on the biggest customer experience trends of the coming year? According to Mark de Bruijn of The Future of Commerce, there are three areas CMOs and decision-makers should focus on.

Let’s take a look at them.

Hyper-Individualization of Retail Experiences

Thanks in large part to the increase in connected technology known as the “Internet of Things,” brick-and-mortar retail spaces will compete with online shopping by offering unique in-person experiences. How will such a connected retail store look in reality? De Bruijn offers the example of a shoe store.

“The moment a customer passes the store, he or she should get a personalized deal offer on their smartphone, letting them know that the newest edition of their favorite shoe is on sale for 20% off, and is available in-stock at that store, right now,” he explains. But the opportunity for personalization goes further. That customer can then enter the store, and “get measurements on their walking patterns, soles, and weight. Based on that data, they can get advice on the footwear that best suits their needs.” That is an engaging, personalized customer experience worth coming into the store for.

65% of customers say that good customer experiences are more important than good advertising.

Putting the Customer at the Center of the Product Cycle

Plenty of companies use focus groups and market research during the research and development stage of a product. It’s an excellent way to make sure you’re giving your customers what they want. But what if you could solicit customer feedback and make improvements during the product lifecycle? That’s what brands like Tesco and Burberry are doing with their customer experiences.

Fashion retailer Burberry invited customers to share the ways they personalized their famous Burberry coats, snapping pictures of clever uses and various ways to wear them. Burberry then took several of the most popular suggestions and used them in marketing materials, from print images of models showing the coats worn a certain way to in-store mannequins featuring them.

Burberry saw a 36% rise in sales of their coats during the campaign. Your products should be designed with your customers in mind. Now, you can make sure your customers know it.

Hyper-individualization enables brick-and-mortar retailers to be competitive by offering unique in-person experience, thanks to the “Internet of Things.”

Virtual Reality Blending In-Store and Online Experiences

One customer experience trend that will carry over from 2018 is the rise of virtual reality (VR) in shopping. But as de Bruijn explains, retail brands will soon be using VR to bring the in-store shopping experience online. “Consumers will not just use [VR] for gaming, but also for home shopping sessions. They can literally walk through the virtual store from the comfort of their couches,” he explains, adding that retails gain an edge, too. “Retailers will enjoy the traditional advantages of brick-and-mortar stores in an online setting: the element of surprise, the ability to steer impulse buying and strategic product placement.”

Meanwhile, de Bruijn says, brick-and-mortar gets the customization treatment from VR. “The digital setting also offers a unique feature that is not available for brick-and-mortars. The store’s layout and even the inventory are fully customizable to the preferences and habits of the individual customer.”

Retail brands will soon be using VR to bring the in-store shopping experience online.

Summary

2020 is shaping up to be a big year for retailers and marketers. Big on keeping the growing importance of personalized customer experiences in focus, brands can compete and win by delivering truly engaging, winning shopping experiences.

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Why NVISION?

NVISION® is a marketing execution company helping Fortune 1000 organizations optimize their marketing supply chain process. We provide the expertise to simplify the creation, procurement, fulfillment, distribution and ongoing account management for customers’ printed marketing materials.

With nearly 100 years of supply chain management expertise in streamlining operations, leveraging buying power and creating innovative solutions, we reduce cost and increase speed-to-market. NVISION provides dedicated experts that understand clients’ brand standards, internal processes, deadlines, and distribution needs.

We manage every step of the process to deliver marketing operations – simplified.

See how NVISION can help your business | Let’s start a conversation about your complimentary assessment!