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2016: The Year for Customer Engagement

We are approaching the end of the year and we wanted to say goodbye to 2015 by doing a wrap-up webinar, reviewing the Retail trends that have been dominating this year, and more importantly, giving actionable insights and recommendations to retailers based on what we have learnt along with the predictions for 2016.

Retail is at the forefront of digital disruption being one of the fastest moving industries today, together with media, technology and telecom. The predictions for 2020 are promising; this study in India’s retail market projected growth to double to $1 trillion by 2020 from $600 billion in 2015.

One of the key implications of this growth is to drive innovation. 2015 continued to be a year of digital transformation in retail. For example, we have seen many Digical innovations, since the combination of physical and digital elements are creating new forms of value (and opportunities). For example, many retail industry verticals are exploring VR/AR technology as a wider IoT strategy to extend the brick and mortar experience.

Let’s take the case of automotive retail. These year we have seen many VR/AR innovations since these technologies may enhance the physical showroom experience by adding a digital layer. Some examples could be the AR app from Ferrari to get more information about the car, or the AR glasses of Mini to improve the driving experience.

Ferrari-Augmented-Reality-App
Ferrari’s AR app

2015 has also been the year of consolidation for social commerce. If we look at demographic aspects, millennials have been the main drivers of it with their social and mobile shopping behavior. Retailers and brands are not avoiding this, investing in gaining more presence in social communities to get closer to their audience, as well as creating ways to monetize the vast user-generated content. Since they know that this consumer-generated content is the brand’s most valuable asset.

Olapic-todo
www.olapic.com

Retailers need to be ready to experiment and be prepared for both success and failure.

“Disruption creates both risk and opportunity.”

Why do you think so many (and leading) specialty retailers are closing down stores these days? Have you noticed? Since the beginning of this year we have seen more than one large retailer announcing the closure of many of their stores, followed by bad results and forecasts for their revenues, when some of these were once profitable! Would you blame the shift to e-commerce? But the majority of sales still happen in physical stores… However, this phenomenon should not be ignored:

“We are progressively advancing to a world of 50:50, where 50% of the sales will happen online and the other 50 offline.”

So where is the opportunity? Invest in technology as it is the enabler of customer and store experiences. I’m not saying anything new: many retailers have been spending hundreds of millions in their attempts to build their digital marketing and e-commerce strategies. But few being really successful… why?

We believe that:

Customer engagement will be the main focus for 2016”

It would be an error to continue to be only channel focused in 2016, when the approach needs to be customer centric. You need to cultivate your customers and develop an emotional bond with your target audience. Be loyal to the core values that make you genuine and attract authenticity. Encourage customer collaboration and advocacy. And finally use technology as an enabler for successful store experiences.

We will show you how in our next webinar on Thursday, the last one of the year! In collaboration with our key partner in India, Happiest Minds , who will co-present it with us.

Thursday 17th of December at 11.30 CET (16.00 IT)  in English
Thursday 17th of December at 17.00 CET in Spanish

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