This Week In Retail Marketing Innovation - August 13, 2019

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Perch named one of 40 of the world’s most innovative marketing future technologies by R3

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Perch has been featured on R3’s Future 40, a report of the 40 most innovative marketing future technologies in the world. The selection criteria was based on practical application of technology to add value and improve current experiences for marketers and customers

The report describes how Perch’s digital experiences in physical stores drive remarkable product conversion lift,  surprise and delight customers.

Read R3’s full report here (page 102): 

Macy’s promotes its back-to-school offers to target younger audiences using various digital apps and “challenges”

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Macy’s has launched an “All Brand New” back-to-school campaign that includes shoppable commercials on Snapchat, a video-sharing challenge on TikTok, and even digital and TV spots aimed at kids’ individuality and self-expression, according to a company announcement.

Macy’s is attempting to reach younger audience through a strategic partnership with Snapchat’s popular “The Dead Girls Detective Agency” series. Viewers of the Snapchat series can shop for Macy’s products directly through the app, with the ability to “shop the looks” of the series’ characters.

The TikTok challenge is another effective route to reach younger audiences getting ready to head back to school. Challenges tend to go viral on TikTok, where users are urged to create their own content to participate. The challenge is to create a video that showcases each user’s unique style for the school year. Other companies like Chipotle Mexican Grill and Uniqlo have used similar TikTok challenges to promote their products and go viral.

TikTok has been downloaded 1.2 billion times worldwide and 104 million times in the U.S., according to research firm Sensor Tower

Macy’s has turned its focus to digital efforts as their physical locations continue to struggle. The company reported a significant dip in Q1 revenue compared to a year earlier, although it saw significant growth in e-commerce and mobile channels.

The company attempted to recover from Q1 in May by launching a mobile-based experiential campaign that urged people to use their phones at summer gathering places across the country. The campaign included pop-up stations featuring Pinterest Pincodes that visitors could scan to unlock to a board featuring outfits curated for each location, according to RetailDive.

Total back-to-school spending is expected to rise slightly to $27.8 billion this year, according to an annual customer survey by Deloitte. With these digital marketing initiatives, Macy’s appears to be in a good position to generate the revenue it needs to boost numbers for Q3.

Walmart submits patent application for its very own cryptocurrency and banking solution


Walmart filed a patent application to create a digital currency that would make transactions cheaper and fast and potentially serve as an alternative to banking for unbanked customers, according to RetailDive

The patent application notes that "customers without traditional bank accounts can create a microbank at an institution such as a retailer, which gains interest while their money is there.” Walmart is trying to offer a way for customers to pay for goods in place of cash and credit/debit cards -- not to mention, save money on transaction fees from third-party bankers. 

While similar to Apple Pay, Walmart’s coin wouldn’t just be a substitute for traditional payment methods. The competitive edge to Walmart’s cryptocurrency program is that it would function similar to a banking relationship, where AI would be used to "[help] the customer to buy an amount according to his budget, values, affinities and preferences," according to the patent.

The retail giant is attempting to stay competitive by developing the currency on its own, as opposed to Facebook’s recently-announced cryptocurrency Libra. The brand is also testing a Delivery Unlimited service to compete directly with Amazon and Target.

Walmart currently uses blockchain to track produce along its supply chain. The company is comfortable in the mobile payment space, and was a major backer of MCX before a large data breach buried it.

The retailer also applied to operate an industrial bank in Utah back in 2005, but regulators rejected the application in 2007. They also currently offer banking services in Canada and Mexico.

Although the patent application has been submitted, there are no set launch dates for the new cryptocurrency program. "We don't have any plans for this patent at this time," Walmart spokesman Kory Lundberg told Bloomberg in an email.

Sounding Smart by The Retail Water Cooler

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