MARKETING/SOCIAL MEDIA

Study: Marketers fear data quality is hurting digital ads

BY Deena M. Amato-McCoy

Relevant, personalized messages are key to driving engagement, yet the quality of sourced data is negatively impacting results.

This was according to “More Data, More Problems: Trust, Transparency & Targeting in 2017.” The report from Bazaarvoice and Ad Age, is based on interviews of more than 300 agency and brand marketers.

Data from first- and third-party sources have become essential to reaching consumers with relevant and personalized messages that boost brand metrics and, ultimately, impact business. More than 60% of respondents said using their own internally collected first-party data is “very important” to their overall marketing strategy.

Additionally, respondents consider the ability to surface potential new customers as the No. 1 quality of “good” data. When asked what they considered the top indicator of “good” data, 50% of all respondents said engaging with ratings and reviews or product detail pages was the No. 1 indicator for predicting if a consumer will buy, the study revealed.

Despite the ubiquity of data among agencies and advertisers alike, marketers revealed that both the sources and quality of data they use is misunderstood and mistrusted. Of the 95% of the surveyed marketers that employ first- and third-party data in their media plans, 64% are not fully clear on the origins of their data sources. Additionally, nearly one-quarter of both brand marketers and agency buyers don’t know how often their data sources are refreshed.

Worse, three-out-of-four marketers surveyed said they are not entirely confident that their data is reaching in-market consumers. Further, only 23% of agency buyers are fully confident that their third-party data partners deliver against key performance indicators (KPIs).

“It’s clear that using data in digital advertising is not going away, but marketers must ask the right questions about their data and demand more transparency from their partners to achieve returns on their ad spend,” said Toby McKenna, senior VP of global advertising at Bazaarvoice. “Thirty-four percent of brand marketers and 24% of agency partners believe their data partnerships lack innovation, so there is a lot of room for improvement.”

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REAL ESTATE

Glimcher named CEO of Starwood

BY Al Urbanski

Michael P. Glimcher, who stepped down as the chief executive of WP Glimcher last year, has been named CEO of Starwood Retail Partners. He succeeds Scott Wolstein, who has taken on a new role as senior adviser to the parent company, Starwood Capital Group.

In the recession of 2008, Glimcher staged a turnaround of Glimcher Realty Trust by reducing the REIT’s debt-to-capitalization ratio by focusing on the acquisition of high-end regional malls. Five years later, its investors reaped an annualized return of 38% compared to and industry average return of 17%.

Washington Prime Group acquired Glimcher in 2015 and pledged to grow the company through increased cash flow and acquisition of more diverse assets. A year later, Glimcher, who had joined the company in 1991 and risen up the leasing department ranks to senior VP, left the company.

"Michael has an intense passion for the retail business… and has a deep understanding of what retailers and shoppers are looking for and how we, as landlords, must adapt,” said Mark Deason, head of U.S. asset management for Starwood.

Wolstein led Starwood Retail Partners from its inception in 2012, building it into a significant industry player with a portfolio of 30 malls and lifestyle centers in the U.S.


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DESIGN/CONSTRUCTION

First Look: Pottery Barn flagship, New York City

BY Marianne Wilson

Pottery Barn is showing off its latest store concept at its just-opened flagship in Manhattan’s Flatiron District.

Located in a landmark Beux-Arts styled building, the 17,000-sq.-ft. store features original columns and adorned ceiling accents. It emphasizes local partnerships, design services and exclusive products, including one-of-kind vintage items.

The flagship is the first Pottery Barn location to feature the retailer’s new design initiative, The Package Deal – Home in a Box. It offers a curated menu of furniture pieces that serve as a base to a well-designed bedroom or living room, with packages starting at $1,000. Suggested vignettes are displayed on the floor, with information about the various package deals displayed in adjacent signage. The room offerings will vary each season as different products and pricing tiers are introduced.

The store’s offerings also include “Design Crew,” a new design services initiative that enables customers to work with a team of designers who will help them find the right products and services across Williams-Sonoma’s eight brands (Williams Sonoma, Williams Sonoma Home, Pottery Barn, Pottery Barn Kids, PBteen, Mark and Graham, Rejuvenation, and West Elm). In-home installation services including, room painting, drape installation, gallery wall hanging and more will be available.

To mark the store opening, Pottery Barn partnered with local artists to design exclusive products and local photographers to create original content that celebrates the brand against the backdrop of New York City.

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