Omni-Channel is a bit of a buzzword these days and can be a little confusing but, in short, it is all the channels that play a part in the customer journey, in the shopper’s path to purchase.
Here you are talking mobile devices, laptops, social media platforms, digital signage, self-service kiosks – basically everything that a brand can use to engage with its target audience – at the right place and time.
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Technology is advancing at such a staggering pace that it can be difficult to not only stay on top of innovation but to integrate it all into a consistent and complimentary experience for the customer.
Key Components to Commercial Success
Being on the cutting edge of developments is a good thing, of course, but before time and money is spent on the introduction of trendy new advancements, companies should first invest in perfecting the basics that makeup a pleasurable shopping trip.
Whether online or in-store; good service, good value and a good overall experience are components to commercial success that has never, and will never, go out of fashion.
After that is said and done can we can look at some examples of how technology is used to engage with audiences – integrating smart digital innovations into everyday life.
Corridors of Choice
Smart use of in-store interactive Digital Displays are increasingly delivering value to bricks and mortar retailers and their customers – none more so than with European shopping centre specialists, Klépierre’s new “Inspiration Corridor”.
The Gist: A Kinect camera (located in a booth) scans you to calculate physical attributes (height, age etc.) as well as the clothes you are wearing – using the data collected to suggest a range of apparel that suits your style.
As you walk down a corridor lined with digital interactive wall screens you will be able to view a variety of items that suit your body-type and are available in the mall at the time.
Your profile is updated with every item you touch – leading to a more refined search and advanced display of clothing to better match your taste.
Touching items in a specific fashion will allow for synchronization on your phone, with further recommendations on items that match that specific choice also a feature of the “Inspiration Corridor”.
Certainly a concept that can be fleshed out and applied in a number of ways.
Customer Rewards through Social and Wearable Tech
There are several other examples of how innovative use of self-service kiosks or “vending machines” helped to create campaigns that upped brand value – but Nike’s recent efforts with its “FuelBand” wearable tech is a great example of how companies can reward customers for using their products.
Related: Are You Ready for Wearable Tech?
Those smart enough to figure out the clues and locate the
vending machines (and smart enough to make use of Nike’s
wearable FuelBand technology) would then be rewarded with
free Nike gear of various value – related to how many
exercise points they had accumulated on their FuelBand device.
Clever stuff and another clear example of how brands and customers
can interact with each other in a mutually beneficial fashion.
Tech that Works is the only “Cool” that Counts
To make trends work for both company and customer you need to first be very clear on what the objective of the exercise is going to be.
If there is no clear benefit to the customer – and no real way to track impact, any digital exercise is bound to be a futile waste of time and money.
In the end “innovation” should work in support of the key components that brings paying customers back for more.
Offering good service, Delivering good value and Creating a good overall experience.