Lego to open in Atlanta
New York — The Denmark-based Lego group will open a Lego store in Atlanta on March 16.
The new store will be located in the Discover Mills outlet center. The space will feature such elements as a “Pick-A-Brick-Wall,” allowing shoppers to select and purchase specific individual Lego bricks in a variety of colors and shapes.
American Express and Twitter team up with retailers to offer discounts
New York — McDonald’s, Whole Foods Market and Best Buy are among the retailers participating in a new American Express program that allows shoppers to load discounts onto their American Express cards via Twitter.
Under the program American Express card members can sync their card with Twitter at sync.americanexpress.com/twitter, and when they tweet using special offer hashtags, couponless savings are loaded directly to their synced cards. When the card members subsequently use their synced card for qualifying purchases online or in-store at participating merchants, the savings are automatically delivered via a statement credit within days.
“American Express is turning Twitter content into commerce by connecting card members to merchants and delivering real world value to both," said Ed Gilligan, vice chairman, American Express. "With the continued convergence of online and offline commerce, our closed loop continues to enable us to bring seamless, relevant ways to connect our card members and merchants on the most powerful social and digital platforms."
Other retailers participating in the program include 1-800-Flowers.com, Century 21 Department Store, The Cheesecake Factory, Dell, The Sports Authority, and Zappos.com.
Neiman Marcus testing personal shopping assistant app
Dallas — Neiman Marcus is testing a new iPhone-only app that allows customers to interact more directly with sales associates. The new app, called NM Service, is being tested in four stores this spring – Dallas;San Francisco; Austin, Texas; and Palo Alto, Calif.
Developed by Signature, NM Service has two interfaces: one for customers and one for sales associates. Each is designed to provide a more personal, mobile shopping experience for the Neiman Marcus customer.
The customer downloads the app from iTunes and opts into the service. In-store location sensors are installed at key entry points throughout the store. If a customer with the app loaded passes within range, the sensor automatically prompts NM Service to act.
Once the app is engaged, customers will be alerted as to which of their preferred sales associates are currently in the store, as well as upcoming store events, new product arrivals and sales, and emerging fashion trends.
Customers can also mark favorite products, which will automatically be visible to the customer’s sales associates. The app allows customers to easily make appointments or leave messages for associates. In addition, they will be able to scan QR codes on signs throughout the store to unlock the latest trends and product information directly on his or her phone.
From a sales associate’s perspective, NM Service allows associates to better serve customer needs. The app provides associates with easy access to informative details such as Neiman Marcus store and neimanmarcus.com purchase history and direct access to a customer’s new favorite items. Notifications automatically alert sales associates when their customer arrives in a store and provides a Facebook photograph so the customer can be easily recognized.
“The NM Service App allows us to take our service philosophy into the digital era. We look forward to using this cutting edge technology to make our Client-Sales Associate relationship even stronger, and further enhancing the Neiman Marcus shopping experience," said Jim Gold, president, specialty retail, The Neiman Marcus Group.