The Sales Associate of Tomorrow

The folks at Deloitte recently released, The Next Evolution: Store 3.0, a report on the readiness of retailers for the store of tomorrow. Although the report offers a somewhat limited and biased perspective since it is based on a survey of only 39 current retail executives, it raises some important questions about the requirements of the future store.

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Retail Tensions

brand as business bit:  There’s been a lot of reporting on the rankings from Interbrand’s Best Retail Brands 2012 report – but I’ve been spending more time on the consultancy’s commentary that’s sprinkled throughout the report. The comments have made me aware of the tensions that now define retail:

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Would You Like a Coffee with That Wi-Fi?

Once upon a time, Wi-Fi was a novelty in coffee shops. It was an unexpected bonus that we encountered when patronizing certain Starbucks or some other forward-looking establishments.]

But what was once a delight if found has become a disappointment if not found, or not working, or not free. Now any self-respecting coffee shop wouldn’t be caught without free Wi-Fi.

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The Woodward Report Interview on Retail

I did this interview last year in Denmark while I was there for NEXT and thought that I would share it. We covered a lot of ground, including retail trends; what's working in retail and what the future of retail might be. Probably the first time I spoke about the role of history and legacy in creating retail experiences, something I still continue to formulate. Have a watch and let me know what you think.

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Brand Experience Brief: Steak ‘n Shake Signature

(Here’s my latest “brand experience brief” — insights and analysis of new and interesting restaurant and retail concepts.)

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Brand Experience Brief: Patagonia’s Tin Shed

(Here’s the latest “brand experience brief” — insights from my audits of new and interesting retail and restaurant concepts.)

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Vickie Achee on the Grand Retail Eperiment at Patagonia

DLYohn 12 Truths to Guide Retailing in 2012

Key points about success in retail from speakers at the NRF’s Retail BIG Show in 2012


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Killing Retail Giants

(The following is the first in a two-part blog-exchange I’m doing with Stephen Denny, author of Killing Giants: 10 Strategies to Topple the Goliath in Your Industry. Because Steve and I are among those teaching the upcoming Marketing Profs University course, Marketing Your Small Business, we decided to address retailers’ issues and opportunities in these posts and focus specifically on small businesses.

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7 Supermarkets to Visit in 2012

When interviewed for my book So You Want To Be Customer-Centric, Georges-Edouard Dias of L'Oréal pointed out the opportunity to truly improve the customer experience in many traditional supermarkets.  In his view: “Many stores today aren't really user-friendly. You need to drive there and park far away from the entrance. When you get inside, it's hard to find the information you're looking for. There are too many products to get a clear picture, and the staff aren't always much help either. Not to mention that even if you know exactly which product you want to buy, it may not be in stock.”

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