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Study: Integrated social, digital media helps increase mall, retailer traffic

BY CSA STAFF

Las Vegas Among the news circulating the convention floor at ICSC’s annual RECon show in Las Vegas currently underway is a new report by Jones Lang LaSalle that indicates social and digital media is essential to the new retail environment.

Social media has changed how consumers behave, communicate, gather information, socialize and shop, according to the study, “Get Connected — how to harness the power of digital media,” which also indicates that advertising and media strategy is no longer a one-way, interruption-based activity and should be interactive, dynamic and provide value to the consumer.

“Adopting an integrated digital media program is no longer merely important but absolutely crucial. Retailers and mall marketers must stay relevant to consumers and that means staying on top of social and digital media,” said president and CEO of Jones Lang LaSalle Retail, Greg Maloney. “We must engage with our consumers rather than talk at them. The overwhelming reality is that social media is increasing across all generations and the rules have changed. We can now solicit customer feedback and interact with consumers directly and in ‘real time.’”

The report found that 92% of consumer respondents rely on the Web to research and browse for products. That said, the company advises that e-mail marketing using coupon offers, sales, loyalty programs and e-marketing initiatives should not stand alone, but rather form part of a greater digital and social media plan to reach customers.

Social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and MySpace map relationships among users and allow information sharing, the report said, and encourages consumers to create their own content.

“Consumers are now in the driving seat and are creating their own content. While this is a new concept, it also creates a huge opportunity for marketers,” said Beth Faulkner, VP marketing, Jones Lang LaSalle Retail. “Social media allows buzz and viral growth so if we reach our audience with the right messages, product information and offers, we can drive traffic to our malls and stores but also have a two-way conversation with our shoppers. Through this we can discover what they want, listen to their feedback and then improve our products and services.”

Meanwhile, there are more than 270 million mobile phone users in the United States and the number of smartphone users is expected to reach 1 billion by 2014. In the next five years shoppers are expected to spend approximately $119 billion on products and services purchased via mobile phones worldwide.

“With consumers becoming more dependent on their phones for researching, socializing, entertainment and spending, it is imperative to engage them on this platform,” said Faulkner. “More importantly, the simultaneous use of mobile technology and social media is increasingly blurring the line between different media making a unified strategy even more vital.”

The rise of mobile phone applications is revolutionary in itself, especially with the global market expected to catapult to $17.5 billion by 2012. Retailers have taken the cue and are rushing to develop apps that bring them close to their target market by offering useful tools to improve the quality and ease of the shopping experience, the report said.

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D.Spencer says:
Mar-21-2013 07:49 pm

For someone who doesn`t know
For someone who doesn`t know so many things about social media industry, I would say this articles draws the line in a rather self-explanatory manner. By reading all sorts of articles on the internet, you may even learn how to start a business, how to follow your ideas, how to maintain your printer or how to purchase a new car. It is all on managing your own resources.

D.Spencer says:
Mar-21-2013 07:49 pm

For someone who doesn`t know so many things about social media industry, I would say this articles draws the line in a rather self-explanatory manner. By reading all sorts of articles on the internet, you may even learn how to start a business, how to follow your ideas, how to maintain your printer or how to purchase a new car. It is all on managing your own resources.

M.Johnson says:
Mar-11-2013 11:19 am

My opinion is that more
My opinion is that more companies should read something about the benefits of cloud computing and to start implementing such technology. The future of networking is changing and fast.

M.Johnson says:
Mar-11-2013 11:19 am

My opinion is that more companies should read something about the benefits of cloud computing and to start implementing such technology. The future of networking is changing and fast.

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Hibbett reports strong Q1, raises outlook

BY CSA STAFF

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. Hibbett Sports reported that net sales for the first quarter ended May 1 increased 17% to $184.5 million compared with $157.7 million for the first quarter ended May 2, 2009. Comparable-store sales increased 14.5%.

Net income for the first quarter of Fiscal 2011 increased 58.9% to $17.3 million compared with $10.9 million for the first quarter of fiscal 2010. Earnings per diluted share increased 56.8% to 59 cents compared with 38 cents for the first quarter of fiscal 2010.

 

Jeff Rosenthal, president and CEO, stated, “The strong sales trend we experienced in the fourth quarter of last year continued throughout the first quarter of this year and into the second quarter. Our overall positive sales performance was driven by double-digit increases in footwear and apparel. The broad-based improvement and exceptional operating margin give us confidence in our optimistic outlook for the remainder of the year.”

The company increased its earnings guidance for fiscal 2011 to a range of $1.35 to $1.50 per diluted share based on mid- to high-single-digit increases in comparable-store sales for the full year.

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Target prepares for hurricane season

BY CSA STAFF

MINNEAPOLIS Target announced that it will serve as a destination for consumers looking to prepare for hurricane season during National Hurricane Preparedness Week, May 23 to 29.

Target pointed to the number of services it offers including a 24-hour daily command center that monitors global events that could impact its customers and associates. The retailer also said its stores will remain open as long as possible during an emergency to help communities get the supplies they need and holds merchandise in its distribution centers in advance of hurricane season so that it can get supplies to stores as quickly as possible.

 

 

“We want our guests to know that before and after a crisis, communities can count on Target,” says Brad Brekke, VP Target assets protection.

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