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Deeper Dive on…FACEBOOK

BY Dan Berthiaume

While some retailers and brands are now conducting actual e-commerce from their Facebook pages, the “buy” button holds the potential to substantially increase Facebook’s potential as a platform for executing omnichannel transactions. Smart retailers will offer, and even encourage, buy online-pick-up-in-store functionality through the buy button. Many consumers prefer the immediacy of picking up an item in a nearby store to waiting for a delivery, and retailers benefit from the resulting increase in store traffic and secondary purchases.

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However, security and privacy will be a major issue for Facebook to address, especially with lingering controversy over the recent admission that the company tested how newsfeed content affected user moods. In addition, although clicking a button to buy an item directly from an ad is the kind of feature that would typically resonate with Millennials, it won’t be enough to bring them back to Facebook. This also means that youth-oriented retailers will be less likely to get seriously involved with the buy button.

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Shopper Expo confirms lineup and content

BY CSA STAFF

Recent enhancements to Walmart’s website ensure that Andy Murray, the company’s SVP of creative, will have plenty to talk about later this year when he addresses the topic of “Evolving with the omnichannel shopper,” at the Shopper Marketing Conference & Expo.

Murray is one of several high level keynote speakers slated to participate in the event organized by the Path to Purchase Institute. After being held in Chicago for many years, the event has relocated to Minneapolis, a marketing hotbed home to many leading CPG companies, and will be held October 21-23. In addition to Murray, also scheduled to speak are Mark Addicks, svp and chief marketing officer, with General Mills.

The Shopper Marketing Conference & Expo has established itself as the premier educational conference and trade show for retailer and supplier company professionals who influence shopper behavior on the path to purchase. Event organizers are expecting roughly 4,000 attendees and nearly 130 exhibitors this year.

A key draw of the event the past four year is the Retail Academy. Now in its fourth year, the Retail Academy is an industry initiative designed to foster the most productive collaborative environment for brand and retail partners. Expected participants this year include more than 150 retail executives from chains such as Ahold USA, CVS/pharmacy, Family Dollar, H-E-B Grocery, Peapod, Price Chopper, Raley’s, Roundy’s Supermarkets, Safeway, SpartanNash, Staples, Target, The Home Depot, Walgreens and Walmart.

The way it works is the retail executives meet in private, one-on-one meetings in the Collaboration Zone, a designated exhibit and meeting space on the show floor that gives Retail Academy sponsors and guests a convenient location to discuss shopper marketing opportunities in a “neutral zone” free from competing organizational conflicts, difficult schedules and restricting silos.

In addition, the Expo features an extensive educational program with multiple half-day symposium workshops and nearly 40 seminars covering a wide scope of topics including shopper marketing best practices, omnichannel marketing, ROI, mobile marketing, retail collaboration, digital path to purchase and shopper insights.

Click here to learn more about the event.

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Build-A-Bear Workshop CEO joins Jack in the Box board

BY CSA STAFF

Build-A-Bear Workshop CEO Sharon John will be joining Jack in the Box’s board of directors, effective September 18.

John has more than 25 years of retail marketing, branding and executive management experience in the public and private sectors. Prior to joining Build-A-Bear Workshop in 2013, she served three years as president of the Stride Rite Children’s Group, a footwear division of Wolverine Worldwide with more than 300 stores in the U.S. and abroad.

From 2002 to 2010 John held several senior management roles with Hasbro, most recently as GM and SVP of its global preschool/Playskool business unit and, prior to that as the SVP and GM of the U.S. toy division where she managed a wide portfolio of brands, including NERF, Transformers and My Little Pony. In 2002, John founded her own toy company, Checkerboard Toys, and served as its CEO until joining Hasbro.

In 1999 John was VP of marketing and product development for the U.S. toy division of Vtech Holdings Ltd., and from 1994 to 1999 she held several senior management positions at Mattel, most recently as VP of international marketing for the company’s Disney business unit. John also has experience working at top marketing and advertising agencies, including DDB Needham Worldwide and Backer Spielvolgel Bates, both in New York.

“Sharon is a tremendous addition to our board,” said Lenny Comma, chairman and CEO at Jack in the Box. “For more than two decades she’s been a driving force at some of the most popular consumer brands in North America. We’re looking forward to benefiting from her extensive experience positioning businesses like Build-A-Bear Workshop and Stride Rite for growth and success as we continue to expand our Jack in the Box and Qdoba brands.”

John has a bachelor’s degree in communications from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville and an MBA in international business and marketing from Columbia University in New York.

Jack in the Box, based in San Diego, is a restaurant company that operates and franchises Jack in the Box restaurants, one of the nation’s largest hamburger chains, with more than 2,250 restaurants in 21 states. Additionally, through a wholly owned subsidiary, the company operates and franchises Qdoba Mexican Grill, with more than 600 restaurants in 47 states, the District of Columbia and Canada.

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