Holiday Happenings: KG Clients are in the News!

xmas-cardThe holiday season is the busiest season of all for retail, which means our retail technology clients have been equally busy. Many of Ketner Group’s clients keep a sharp eye on trends throughout the holiday, such as online shopper engagement, grocery sales across channels and department store sales.

This year was no different and we’re thrilled to share a taste of their most fantastic coverage.

Here are some highlights:

DynamicAction revealed data regarding holiday promotions and returns, which appeared in CNBC, The Financial Times, The Wall Street Journal, Internet Retailer and Chain Store Age.

360pi also revealed research regarding Amazon’s sales and inventory in comparison to other sites and online search engines, which appeared in Recode, USA Today, Business Insider and multiple articles in The Wall Street Journal including “Retailers Vie for Black Friday Dollars,” “Retailers Push Early Start to Black Friday Sales,” and “Online Black Friday Sales Gain on Cyber Monday.”

Mirakl provided insight into how to address pricing challenges on online marketplaces in The Washington Posts “A $329 Hatchimal and the challenge of online marketplaces” and OrderDynamics provided tips on optimizing inventory levels in SupplyChainDive.

Unata shared trends on grocery shopping online and its rise in comparison to in-store shopping over Thanksgiving which appeared in Progressive Grocer, The Shelby Report, Grocery Headquarters and FoodDive.

We look forward to sharing more high-level publicity for our clients as their holiday analysis continues to roll in, including a 25 Days of Shopper Insights report on eCommerce trends from Edgecase, a creative and highly informative tool to help retailers celebrate the holiday season.

A #RetailRoundUp Featuring KG Clients in the News

ketner-group-clients-in-the-newsAs public relations professionals and people who just generally love our jobs—seriously, working for Ketner Group is amazing!—we are always thrilled to help our clients secure valuable media coverage to share with their teams and their customers. The past couple of months, we’ve been excited to hear what our clients have to say about a bunch of hot news items including Amazon Prime Day, back-to-school, Macy’s closings and Walmart purchasing Jet.com.

Amazon’s Prime Day 2016

Amazon’s Prime Day 2016 was one for the books. The second annual global shopping event experienced an all time high in global merchandise sales. Amazon surpassed all expectations by more than 60% in worldwide sales and more than 50% in the U.S., as shared on CNBC. As the single biggest day in company history, Amazon offers its members a one-of-a-kind experience unlike any other. In Retail Dive, ThoughtWorks Retail states that Amazon truly hooks its customers on being a valuable “member” by offering a very a personalized experience.

What does this mean for marketplace sellers? Should they compete with the eCommerce leader or join the opportunity to increase sales? Our client 360pi noted in Retail TouchPoints that, “Amazon marketplace seller deals dominated last year’s Prime Day event,” and was estimated that twice as many small business were expected to participate in this year’s event. 360pi was also featured in Internet Retailer, Ecommerce-Journal and TWICE.

Dynamic Action also shared their thoughts in the WWD article, “Retailers Counterpunching Amazon Prime With Sales of Their Own.”

Walmart/Jet.com

If you haven’t heard already, Walmart is on track to accelerate online growth and expenditures by purchasing eCommerce retailer Jet.com Inc. for an estimated $3 billion. Wal-Mart Stores Inc. plan to maintain distinct brands and offerings, continuing to focus on the company’s Everyday Low Price strategy. Will this move give Walmart the competitive edge they need to compete with Amazon? Jenn Markey, VP Marketing at 360pi offers insights in RIS News as to what this means for the retail industry, stating that this acquisition will give Walmart “significant online data capacities and insights,” while moving away from retailers’ head-to-head pricing wars. The retail industry will continue to shift toward assortment and product differentiation strategies. 360pi also shared their thoughts on the subject in Apparel Magazine and MarketWatch.

ThoughtWorks Retail was quoted in The Washington Post on the subject, Dianne Inniss was skeptical that Jet and its promise of low prices could do much to help Walmart steal market share from Amazon: “Amazon has been moving away from price as a differentiator in favor of seamless convenience and deeper integration of its products and services into customers’ lives.” They also commented on the subject in Internet Retailer, Fierce Retail, Retail TouchPoints and Marketing Land.

Mirakl similarly mentioned Amazon in their thoughts on the purchase. In WWD, Adrien Nussenbaum, U.S. chief executive officer and cofounder said a WalMart deal to buy Jet.com would be “a clear endorsement of the marketplace model, where third-party sellers offer products on a retailer’s site. Amazon’s success with this model has put a ton of competitive pressure on Wal-Mart.” Our client Kibo Commerce also shared their thoughts on the story in Mobile Commerce Daily.

Macy’s Store Closings

It was announced at the beginning of August that Macy’s plans to close 100 of its underperforming department stores as an effort to greater connect with their customers. As a store with strong brand recognition and following they cannot continue to operate in its current form. In RIS News, ThoughtWorks Retail innovation strategist Dianne Inniss offers insights as to how Macy’s plans to move forward in their current model shift. “Macy’s can be no more in its current form. The brand can survive but the current model cannot…Macy’s need to fundamentally rethink how they manage their technical and business architectures in order to be more nimble, responsive, engaging and relevant to the needs of today’s and tomorrow’s customers.”

In the same article, Mirakl’s Adrien Nussenbaum agreed, “Macy’s is an iconic retailer with a long history of success, and one of many victims of Amazon. In the same week that Jeff Bezos pockets roughly $800 million personal dollars, Macy’s is forced to suffer a tremendous physical retail loss.”

Mirakl and ThoughtWorks were also quoted in Chain Store Age and ThoughtWorks’s opinions were shared in Internet Retailer.

Back-to-School

With summer ending, wallets are emptied from travels and consumers are looking for back-to-school savings more than ever. How do retailers compete for consumer dollars and break through the online retail impact? ThoughtWorks Retail offered solutions in The Baltimore Sun to get customers in the door and turn them into a loyal customer. “The key is to find opportunities to build trust, to build affinity and to create habits.”

In “Promotions, E-Commerce Seen Denting Back-to-School Sales,” in WWD, Dynamic Action also commented on the subject.

We look forward to watching how the current retail model evolves with the help of our awesome clients and their groundbreaking technologies. Stay tuned for more client news as the busy fall retail season continues.

Retail Season is Here and Shop.org is Around the Corner

Image via http://retailsdigitalsummit.nrf.com/

Retail season has arrived. From now until spring, our calendars are filled with the hottest events and busiest days in retail. We jumped into the fray last month with back to school campaigns and returned from Labor Day to kick things into high gear with Shop.org prep. This year, Shop.org is Sept. 26-28 in Dallas, only a three-hour drive up I-35, and our team is excited to check out the show along with a number of events taking place throughout the show. Here’s our roundup of can’t miss Shop.org happenings:

Retail Innovation Lounge Dallas
Ketner Group is thrilled to serve as a media sponsor for Retail Innovation Lounge Dallas, taking place Sept. 26-28 at The Dallas Entrepreneur Center, a short shuttle ride away from Shop.org. The event will bring together leading retail executives and retail technology innovators for three days of keynotes, panels and networking.

Ketner Group Clients at Shop.org
In addition, a number of Ketner Group clients will be attending and exhibiting at Shop.org. You’ll find Convey, DynamicAction, Edgecase, Kibo and Mirakl on the expo floor. For more information on their exact location, check out the Shop.org exhibitor list, here, and if you’re interested in meeting with one of our clients, let us know.

Can’t Miss Keynotes and Sessions
There are number of exciting keynotes and sessions planned for Shop.org. We’re especially looking forward to the keynotes, “JC Penney and Transforming the Customer Experience – An Insider’s Look” and “Digital Retail’s Fast Track: Virtually There With AR/VR” featuring speakers from Sephora and Google.

We’d love to see you in Dallas this month. Please reach out if you’re interested in grabbing coffee to catch up or talk about your company’s PR strategy.

Don’t Forget to Vote for Your Favorite SXSW Panels!

OK kids, this is a BIG week! It’s the last week to vote for your favorite SXSW 2017 panels. In case you missed the memo or just need a friendly reminder, this Friday, September 2 is the last day for public voting and commenting for the panels you’d like to see as part of the 2017 programming.

If you are having trouble deciding which panels to vote for, let your friends at Ketner Group help you out! This year, our clients at DynamicAction and Convey have thrown their hat in the ring to speak on some incredible retail and brand-focused panels. And because we love retail tech so much, we’ve also listed several additional panels from our friends at RetailMeNot, Bazaarvoice and eyeQ. Check out our recommendations below:

The Fight for Fit in Retail

In this session, four female thought leaders will discuss how the concept of “fit” has evolved from the early days of ready-to-wear clothing to custom clothes-on-demand. From clothing to cosmetics, we’ll explore how retailers need to keep up with changing styles, sizes and gender identities, the changing role of sales associates and how technology (magic mirrors, virtual reality, mobile apps, body imaging) is changing the way shoppers find the perfect fit – forever!

How to Protect Customers from Delivery Disaster

Rising customer expectations are forcing retailers to build complex carrier networks with disparate experiences and capabilities. How can retailers use data to unify the experience, reduce cart abandonment and boost post-purchase satisfaction? What is necessary to answer customers needs for real-time updates? In this panel, eCommerce leaders will discuss how they are overcoming modern delivery challenges to wow customers.

Understanding Privacy in the Land of Oversharing

In this world of consumer oversharing, the line between public and private content is blurry, leaving brands to navigate a murky gray area of what kinds of consumer-generated content can be repurposed for a brand’s needs. How do the boundaries of the law differ from the ethical guidelines set by industry groups, and what can brands do to protect themselves and the consumers they hold so dear?

Data is the New Black: The Consumer “It” Factor

Brands are living in the age of the consumer, but with smarter insights the age of the savvy marketer is bursting onto the scene. So, how can you harness the power of consumer behavior and data in a way that is discrete, empowering and not….creepy? To remain relevant in the cut-throat world of retail, brands must start to leverage consumer behavior data at scale, and optimize the information overload in new and interesting ways.

Privacy in an Era of Shopper-Aware Machines

Retailers and brands are adopting new technologies to better compete with e-commerce. From responsive signage, to beacons and sensors, store environments are becoming embedded with shopper-aware technologies in response to customers’ demands for easier, more fun, and more engaging shopping experiences. But if these devices are aware of – and responding to – shoppers, does that create new privacy concerns? In this survey of emerging technologies panelists will discuss the privacy implications for shoppers, brands and retailers.

Final 2017 programming will be announced the week of October 17. Click here to check out already announced key note and featured speakers!

Getting a Seat at the Cool Kids’ Table: SXSW PanelPicker Tips and Tricks

It’s hard to believe, but the programming preparation for SXSW Interactive 2017 is already underway. As many of us in the industry already know, the PanelPicker submission process kicked off last week and closes on July 22. Which means if you are working to submit a panel, duo, trio or solo session for next year’s line-up, you have exactly 15 days to finalize your panelists and hit the send button.

Courtesy of Ketner Group
Courtesy of Ketner Group

Getting selected to be a part of SXSW’s much coveted Interactive program is no easy task. The competition is fierce and it gets tougher every year when going up against highly sought-after tech speakers in the areas of robotics, virtual reality and machine learning, not to mention President Obama and J.J. Abrams.

Over the past two years, the Ketner Group team has led the charge in getting a few of our clients’ panels selected as SXSW speakers via the PanelPicker process, and in doing so, have learned a few tips and tricks.

For those of you who may not know, the PanelPicker process goes something like this:
It is a “three-step online process” that allows the SXSW community to have a voice in programming. The first step encourages the community to enter proposals for daytime conference programming for all SXSW events; the second step allows the community to browse all of these ideas, leave comments and vote for those they think are the best fit. The third step, not open to the public, is the input of the SXSW staff and advisory boards, which helps ensure that less well-known voices have as much of a chance as being selected to speak at SXSW as individuals with large online followings. The voting breakdown looks like this: Public Votes – 30%, SXSW Advisory Board – 40% and SXSW Staff – 30%.

While one can argue that luck and timing plays a huge part in getting picked for the “cool kids” table at SXSW, there is something to be said for paying close attention to the things that the advisory board and the SXSW staff recommend when putting forth a session to be voted on. According to SXSW, “Fully-proofed, narrowly-focused, forward-thinking ideas that emphasize creativity and innovation will have the best chance of successfully navigating SXSW community voting, staff analysis and Advisory Board feedback.”

Here are a just a few recommendations from the Ketner Group team on organizing a successful panel at SXSW:

  • It has been our experience that having at least one or two high profile speakers, whether by name or association with their company, coupled with an eye-catching topic that is new and different, is key. Our clients who have been selected for SXSW Interactive programming in recent years have used titles such as the “Future of Cool” and “Ghost Economy,” for their sessions, combined with speakers from Google, Zappos and Brooks Brothers.
  • Some of the coolest sessions that I’ve been to at SXSW have also included well-known media or industry analysts, such as this session from 2015 titled “Personalization for the People,” featuring Forrester’s lead ecommerce analyst and a reporter from CNBC, in addition to an executive from Sephora.
  • Take the time to review the sessions that were selected in previous years – SXSW loves featuring new speakers and new, never-seen before topics and data. As well, when recruiting for speakers, try to find candidates that have presented at other industry events – part of the submission process is to upload videos of the proposed speakers doing what they do best, speak! SXSW is looking to fill their programming with engaging folks who will, for lack of better words, put butts in the seats.
  • Learn all you can from others who have been successful at SXSW, and don’t make the mistakes of others. SXSW is hosting best practices meet ups in multiple cities over the next few weeks – take advantage of these events to learn how to make your proposal stand out. As well, there are plenty of blogs and articles, like ours here, that will give you guidance on what works and what doesn’t. Check out this great article in the Austin American-Statesman that outlines four concepts that make a better panel for SXSW audiences.

If your panel does get selected for SXSW, that’s when the real work begins! Stay tuned for future blogs on how to best prepare your speakers for SXSW and how to successfully promote your panel leading up to the festival. In the meantime, if you need any guidance on submitting a panel for SXSW this year, feel free to contact me at [email protected]com and our team would be glad to help!

Good luck!

 

Identifying the Value of the Modern Press Release

We hear questions from our clients all the time about when, where and how to use press releases in today’s landscape and wanted to break down how to think about them today. With the rise of digital media, social media and interactive content, the role of press releases has shifted, but their intrinsic benefits are still intact.

The role of the press release:

  • Direct communications: Releases deliver unfiltered messages to the masses, supporting lead-generation, sales conversions and public visibility.
  • Search engine optimization (SEO): Investors, customers, potential employees and other target groups can learn about and discover your company through keyword searches.
  • Long-term content: Releases become permanent parts of a company’s public record, findable and downloadable for the foreseeable future.

Reaching those who matter, directly and on message

Press releases provide factual, direct information to a maximum number of media covering your company, customers and market. Press release distribution, whether over the wire or to a select list of relevant media, gives your company a formal touchpoint with media who are consistently challenged to keep your company top of mind. Press releases themselves won’t cut through the noise of the market, but they provide PR pros with the ammunition to leverage their relationships with reporters to deliver the visibility your brand needs to grow.

Additionally, each news outlet that picks up your press release is going to have its own dedicated readership—which means that you’ll have a new set of eyes seeing your brand for the first time  every instance a press release is published. These users will be reading your press release, getting an idea of your business and, if they’re interested, visiting your site—that’s extra referral traffic that serves as icing on the cake.

Get Googled

Press releases have natural SEO benefits, including:

  • Natural links from multiple, and high quality, outside sources: It’s hard to get quality inbound links. Whatever your content creation strategy (blogs, video content, social media), it’s a challenge to get your content syndicated through third parties. Alternatively, news sources constantly need new material to publish and each one that picks up your release gives you much needed link source diversity. It’s also much easier and far more likely that a high quality website will post a drafted release than write an original story – on your customer win, product news, event attendance, etc. When Google sees this, you get preferential treatment by association.
  • Opportunities for keyword linking and name recognition: Press releases also give you the key opportunity to associate your company name with relevant keywords and subjects. Releases can include the company name and market keywords to increase the likelihood that searches will result in the company page showing up due to co-occurrence and co-citation, as well as the recent semantic search updates to Google’s algorithms.
  • Online reputation management: Press releases that include your brand name in the title tend to rank well in search engines for searches of your brand name. Since you can control the content of a press release, this gives you some degree of control over your online reputation (at least as far as what users see when they Google your brand name).

Formal reference points – beyond the data sheet

Press releases act as a form of online brand management and marketing. Storing copies of your press releases on your website provides potential customers with all the necessary information about your company. Customers that need product information or client references can easily find them in the press release without spending their time poring over technical specifications or looking for customer reviews you can’t control. Simple media alerts don’t have this sort of long-term brand management potential.

Expectations for press releases

The primary question to ask when asking a PR agency to draft a press release is: “Is a press release the most effective way to get my point across?” While it may be slightly more expensive, is it important to control my message, have instant and worldwide syndication, boost search results and provide a library of news for potential clients visiting your website? If so, then a press release will usually deliver maximum value, even if a barrage of media briefing requests do not come your way.

Sources

  • DeMers, Jayson. “Where Press Releases Fit In Your 2015 SEO Strategy.”Forbes. Forbes Magazine, 29 Dec. 2014. Web. 02 Apr. 2016.
  • Tan, Miranda. “Why Press Releases Are More Important than Ever.”LegalZoom. N.p., 24 Nov. 2015. Web. 02 Apr. 2016.

Retail’s BIG Show: #NRF16 Client Recap, Part Two

If there is any indication that this year’s NRF show was the most exciting yet, it’s that we need two whole blog posts to recap just how great it was. Our clients were among the best and brightest out on that show floor, demonstrating cutting-edge retail technology and hosting thought-provoking BIG !dea sessions. They were invaluable additions to the educational atmosphere of one of the industry’s longest-running events, but don’t just take our word for it, see for yourself:

Photo courtesy of Kathleen See
Photo courtesy of Kathleen See

Predictix

Continuing to stay “one step ahead of the competition,” as observed in PYMNTS, Predictix announced during the show that it has entered a strategic partnership with Infor to resell Predictix applications to its customers as a part of Infor CloudSuite Retail. This announcement, along with Predictix’s impressive 40% YOY SaaS growth, generated buzz for the predictive analytics company. Adding to the excitement, Aaron Surasky, Senior Director, Assortment Planning and Analysis for The Home Depot, led an NRF BIG !deas session where he discussed how retailers are working with Predictix to create differentiated, locally relevant assortments while operating multiple channels and stores to an audience of more than 200.

Check out some additional awesome coverage of Predictix from the show by Apparel, Retail TouchPoints, B2Becommerceworld and Just-Style.

Shopatron

The week was an exciting one for Shopatron as well, which announced that “it is now part of a unified omnichannel commerce solutions company called Kibo,” by merging with MarketLive and Fiverun according to RIS News . In a MultiChannel Merchant recap of the companies’ merge, Shopatron founder Ed Stevens (now COO of Kibo) and MarketLive founder Ken Burke “talk about how the responsive redesign and the enhanced back-end capabilities helped Modell’s {Sporting Goods] become an omnichannel success story this holiday season.”

Starmount

In the world of omnichannel, just-style was impressed with Starmount’s newly-unveiled Store Inventory application, which helps retailers maintain more accurate store inventory and allows store associates “to engage customers and process transactions.” Starmount used its time at NRF to demonstrate how this addition to its Customer Engagement Suite is an asset to retailers.

Thoughtworks

Included as a “Top 10 Takeaway” by RIS News, Thoughtworks took the opportunity at NF to highlight the new e-commerce engine it built for Mitchells‘ website. In addition to putting a spotlight on its latest project, Thoughtworks also connected with many retail industry professionals to learn from and share with the behind-the-scenes retail software experts.

Unata

In addition to meeting and networking with other members of the retail community, this year’s NRF for Unata also highlighted a major endeavor that is in-progress between the digital grocery solutions company and regional grocery chain, Lowes Foods. In a video interview with Retail Touchpoints, Michael Moore, CMO for Lowes Foods, spoke on how the partnership is “bringing to life a whole new customer experience” known as “retail-tainment” with the help of Unata.

Retail’s BIG Show: #NRF16 Client Recap, Part 1

NRF’s 105th annual conference featured over 30,000 attendees, a plethora of thought leadership sessions from retail’s top leaders and a vast selection of innovative new technologies— too many to even count— however, in the midst of all the activity, our clients definitely shined through the crowd at Retail’s BIG Show bringing their own innovative stories into the mix.

Photo courtesy of Kathleen See
Photo courtesy of Kathleen See

360pi

According to RIS News, 360pi’s session, “Imitation is the Sincerest Form of Flattery: Learn from Amazon” hosted by VP of Marketing, Jenn Markey, was a session quick hitter with the company’s “Holiday’s Insights Executive Intelligence Report,” which covered various pricing strategies of the world’s biggest retailers like Amazon, Target and Walmart. The report’s most interesting insight revealed that though Walmart is usually within 5% of Amazon’s Prices, the pricing disparity increased to 10% during the holiday season with Amazon’s exclusive membership-only shopping opportunities.

Advanced Pricing Logic

This year at NRF, Advanced Pricing Logic presented their easy-to-use analytics interface, PRICEXPERT, which combines the use of price optimization and competitive data. At their booth, APL got the chance to showcase their innovation that can enhance the way retailers and other businesses meet their financial goals. APL was also able to network with many retailers and top tier media alike.

Birdzi

With thousands of attendees from the retail industry, Birdzi utilized the conference to network with big names in the retail industry and the media. Birdzi had the chance to connect with fellow industry players and share how they’re transforming retail through their state-of-the art personalized shopper engagement platform.

CART

At NRF, CART presented how their website can help navigate the ever-changing industry of retail technology. With over 5,000 solutions, CART was able to show how their innovation can aid with searching and learning by connecting retailers to a variety of solutions and products. By demonstrating how their service works, CART was able to network with a variety of retailers and members of the press.

Displaydata

As the leading, global supplier of fully graphic, 3 color electronic shelf labels and in-store location management, Displaydata took NRF by storm by showing how their innovative system leads to better sales, profits and customer loyalty. By demonstrating their dynamic solution, showcasing their electronic shelf labels and offering interactive tours with real-time consumer interaction, Displaydata was able to boast their dynamic pricing tactics.

Adam Blair of Retail TouchPoints went on to highlight Displaydata’s capabilities in his NRF recap post.

Mirakl

This year at NRF Mirakl had the opportunity to meet with a vast amount of retailers and the press about their e-commerce marketplace platform and Best Buy Canada’s launch of its online marketplace. With constant networking all around the conference, Mirakl was very busy making their name known to the big players in the retail industry and earning their spot on Retail TouchPoint’s “What were The Hot Topics of #NRF16?” coverage round-up.

To be continued…

Retail’s BIG Show: How We’re making the most of it

A lot can happen in four days.

You can go from an obscurity to a viral sensation. If you take a step for every second of those four days, you would find yourself almost 164 miles away from where you started. You can meet your future spouse in line at the grocery store and then spend the next three days trying to decide whether or not you should make the first move (you should, by the way).

Photo courtesy of Kathleen See

Long story short, a day holds a lot of potential. Multiply that by four, and you’ve got yourself almost an entire workweek to do something really cool. Like travel to an exciting city, make new friends, reconnect with old ones and learn something new.

On Jan. 17-19, we are excited to do just that at NRF’s BIG Show, the biggest retail event of the year. Here’s how we plan to make the most of those four days in the Big Apple!

BIG !dea Sessions

If there was ever a question about how to jump a retail hurdle, the answer is in one of these sessions. Delivered by industry leaders from all walks of the retail world, these talks highlight innovative new strategies and products that are being used to make retail seamless.

Kevin Sterneckert of Predictix will speak alongside Aaron Surasky, senior director of assortment planning and analysis at The Home Depot, on the art of personalizing store inventory to meet local expectations. For session details, click here.

In the pricing world, Jenn Markey of 360pi will give participants the inside scoop on Amazon’s pricing strategy this past holiday season and lend insight on how to compete without starting a price war. Jenn’s session details can be found here.

There will be something for everyone for those taking advantage of these sessions. A full schedule can be found here.

Rock & Roll Retail

One of our personal favorites, Rock & Roll Retail, definitely deserves some recognition. Executives from retailers such as Schlotsky’s, Spencers, Radioshack, along with leading industry influences, will literally rock out at this after-hours networking event. It’s hilarious, fun and a great way to meet new people.

Retail ROI’s SuperSaturday

Retail ROI’s SuperSaturday is the perfect way to brush up on all things retail technology-related before NRF. Along with the focus on retail data and trends, comes the more charitable keynote speech by country music star Jimmy Wayne’s on the importance of protecting children. And of course, all sponsorships of the event are donated directly to help orphans through the Retail Orphan Initiative. 

EXPO Hall

We are thrilled to have our clients presenting their innovative retail solutions on the exhibition floor, and you should be too. From new product launches to intriguing thought-leadership, stop by these booths and see why they’ve checked in at the country’s biggest retail show:

To learn more about or schedule time to catch up with these solution providers, along with Birdzi, CART, Mirakl, ThoughtWorks or Unata at the conference, email [email protected].

Videogames, Stethoscopes and Retail Robots: South by Southwest 2016 is going to Rock

SXSW_Platinum-2015-RGBWhen the experts from a diverse range of disciplines come together under one roof, each with their own unique perspectives and hard-earned knowledge, invaluable insights are to be expected. This March, some of the world’s most respected medical innovators, videogame designers and marketing all-stars (just to name a few) will join the panels of South by Southwest 2016’s Interactive Series in Austin, Texas to dissect, debate and present the most groundbreaking discoveries in each of their respective fields. Of course, they will all be awesome, but there are six in particular that we are dying to see (and you should be too). We have a handful of clients throwing their hat in the ring to speak on some incredible panels, and we encourage you to support the panelists with your vote, and tell us which presentations have you most excited!

First up is Order Dynamics, resident experts at retail data analytics. They will dive into the world’s toughest industry to find the perfect commerce cocktail with their discussion on “Retail Data Mixology.” John Squire, President of DynamicAction, will join Kevin Ertell of Sur la Table, Laura SXSWHeller of FierceMarkets and Forbes, and Dr. David Bell, a consumer shopping behavior expert from the University of Pennsylvania, to uncover key ways to pinpoint customer and marketing needs. Show your support by voting them into the Panel Series here.

As well, 360pi, big data pricing analysts, are prepared to give you a glimpse “Inside the Retail Vortex.” They will share valuable insights along with Paula Rosenblum of RSR Research, Andy Voelker of Ace Hardware, and Dana Klein of Reebok Adidas Group, on what the “new normal” of retail looks like for brands who are adapting (or not) to the online surge. Vote them into the Panel Series here.

Shopatron will save you from the wait of online shopping and divulge how to avoid the retail “time suck.” Learn from CEO of Shopatron Ed Stevens and San Francisco Chronicle columnist and author Thomas Lee about how retailers can improve customer sentiment and reduce shipping costs by getting smart about local product searches. Vote for this panel to be officially selected into the Series here, and we’ll see you there!SXSW2

Mirakl will tell us the story of “How the Online Marketplace Ate Retail.” We all love shopping online in some form or fashion – but how much of that is done on Amazon, and now Jet.com? While it may be ideal for consumers, retailers are still working out exactly how to keep their profits up and overhead low. Join Mirakl’s CEO for the U.S. Adrien Nussenbaum, Paula Rosenblum of RSR Research and Forbes, and Chandhu Nair of Staples as they provide insights on our web-based retail era. Show your support with a vote here, and we’ll see you in Austin!

Watch human and machine collide with Edgecase’s Lisa Roberts and their fellow panelists Brian Schultz of Crate and Barrel, John Perasco of Urban Decay, and Alicia Fiorletta of Retail TouchPoints as they present “The Future of Retail: Human + Machine Curation.” Show them your excitement and support with a vote here to see just how machine learning can revolutionize online shopping.

Want to be a retail fortune-teller? Retail Innovation Consultant Rachel Brooks of ThoughtWorks will predict the “Future of Cool” for retailers in the fashion industry alongside Google’s Fashion Data Scientist Olivier Zimmer, Zappos’ Content Editor Kandis Yoakum, and CEO and Founder of Shoptelligence Laura Khoury. They’ll discuss how technology can help retailers deduce up-and-coming fashion trends, but they need your vote here to officially join the Series.

With such a compelling lineup, innovation is expected, breakthroughs are likely, and fun is a definite. Place your votes now (deadline is this Friday, September 4), and we will see you in March!