5 Monetate execs make their tech + retail predictions for 2016

By Marc Hummel

January 13, 2016

Monetate CEO Lucinda Duncalfe

1. Luncinda Duncalfe, CEO

How will the ways brands interact with their customers change in 2016?
In 2016, we’ll see the beginning of the true shift from pushing to a mass market to interacting with individual customers.

How will mobile and retail change in 2016?
More and more people will use an app as a central point of interaction with their favorite brands.

What tech innovation are you most looking forward to in 2016?
Ubiquitous mobile payments.

Any other 2016 predictions?
RFID checkout. You put your items in your cart, the cart gets scanned at the door without being unloaded, pay, and you’re on your way.

Which feature do you hope the iPhone 7 ships with?
True camera zoom. Though really I just want Apple to fix Music. Please.

What personal goal are you working toward in 2016?
Mindfulness.

Which movie/music release are you looking forward to the most in 2016?
Toy Story 4!

 

Bob Lawson Monetate CFO

2. Bob Lawson, CFO

How will the ways brands interact with their customers change in 2016?
Brands will need to be more relevant and personal to drive customer loyalty. As a consumer, the signal-to-noise ratio is becoming more noisy; I’m bombarded by emails and display ads like never before. I want brands to interact with me in the way I want. Not by beating me over the head, but by enabling me to discover and find what I want, when I want it.

How will mobile and retail change in 2016?
I hope we’ll get closer to multichannel frictionless shopping. Despite the huge growth in mobile usage, it’s hard to navigate and hard to buy a lot on my mobile device. Amazon has changed the game with Prime Now, making it easy for me (a person who doesn’t like to shop) to find something quickly and have it delivered to me in an hour. Other retailers are going to have to compete with that by leveraging their physical presence and integrating it with their online and mobile experiences.

What tech innovation are you most looking forward to in 2016?
Better Wi-Fi on planes. I flew more than 100,000 miles last year (most of it back and forth between San Francisco and Philadelphia), and it’s a constant battle for me to have enough bandwidth to be productive.

Any other 2016 predictions?
I was the CFO of a biofuels company that went public in 2010. I believed (and told every investor I met on the IPO roadshow) that oil in 2015 would be $150 a barrel. It’s $36 today. I’ve given up making predictions.

Which feature do you hope the iPhone 7 ships with?
Better battery life! Please!!

What personal goal are you working toward in 2016?
Other than doing all I can to make sure Monetate is wildly successful, my near-term goal is to ski at least 10 days this year. After last year’s terrible drought in California, I’m counting on more snow in 2016.

Which movie/music release are you looking forward to the most in 2016?
Movies: Rogue One and Finding Dori, the Pixar sequel to Finding Nemo.
Music: I’m stuck in the 80s so I’m still hoping for an R.E.M. reunion.

 

Nathan Richter

3. Nathan Richter, Sr. Director Strategy & Analytics

How will the ways brands interact with their customers change in 2016?
It will change based on a growing consolidation of the enterprise’s internal “teams” that interact with their customers. More organizations will start to consolidate the teams and processes that connect the customer to the brand. It will help the customer (by delivering better, more intelligent interaction) and help the organization (with better planning, execution, and cost of inefficient/isolated programs).

How will mobile and retail change in 2016?
Traffic/eyeballs will continue to migrate. There will continue to be a lag in conversion and revenue contribution proportional to traffic. Nothing earth-shattering and that’s okay.

As opposed to a change, I would throw out a recommendation for brands to really analyze what their mobile sites should be doing within a customer journey versus trying to force and measure behavior that may never be realistic for that medium. Double down on learning and analysis of the channel behaviors.

What tech innovation are you most looking forward to in 2016?
Monetate’s Customer Intelligence Layer! Seriously—the huge strides that are being made in customer identification and reconciliation across devices with the ability to view/manage/promote experiences throughout a customer journey is pretty exciting. I’m spoiled in that I get a front row seat with our clients to see how it is used and impacts the customer experience.

Which feature do you hope the iPhone 7 ships with?
Is size a feature? All I want my next iPhone to be is the size of the 4 and thin and as a credit card. I heard the 7 will be offering an iPhone 5 sized option, but I want the full rollback!

Which movie/music release are you looking forward to the most in 2016?
More surprise music releases from artists as they continue to explore their direct access to fans and the music community.

 

Jess Vadino Monetate

4. Jessica Vadino, Ecommerce Strategist

How will the ways brands interact with their customers change in 2016?
Brands will become more focused on how they can really cultivate and grow relationships with their customers with a strong focus on customer experience—not just user experience. Less “one and done,” “website vs. mobile vs. brick and mortar” thinking, and more focus on lifetime value, inclusive of all channels and touch points.

How will mobile and retail change in 2016?
Mobile will stop being a separate thing, treated separately by separate teams with separate goals (and so on). Whether mobile web or mobile app, it’ll be another vein in the brand experience—not another organ.

I think we’ll see customers start to use their mobile devices for their primary shopping devices—not just store locator, show rooming and price comps.

What tech innovation are you most looking forward to in 2016?
I’m very excited to see what’s going to happen with tech in the healthcare space. So much opportunity with such amazing potential impact.

Which feature do you hope the iPhone 7 ships with?
Tougher materials so I can drop the case (pardon the pun) and finally have a naked iPhone without constantly risking a heart attack.

What personal goal are you working toward in 2016?
I’m in the process of teaching myself French via apps and a whodunit podcast that’s half English, half French. I can’t wait until I can understand the whole story!

Which movie/music release are you looking forward to the most in 2016?
Either Independence Day 2 or seeing the final reunion show for The Loved Ones. I’m a throwback kinda girl when it comes to my entertainment.

 

Brett Bair, Monetate

5. Brett Bair, Sr. Director Digital Marketing Insights and Strategy

How will the ways brands interact with their customers change in 2016?
I think there will be a demonstrative uptick when comes to customer focused retail innovation in 2016. Quite a few large retail brands had less than stellar Q4s. I think retail is finally waking up to the fact that customers demand better experiences that take advantage of the data the customer gives the retailer and the technology that customer uses. In 2015 customers chose better, technologically enhanced shopping experiences. In 2016, brands will need to innovate or marginalize their brand.

How will mobile and retail change in 2016?
In 2014, mobile was a growing source of traffic. In 2015, mobile came of age. Billions of dollars were transacted via mobile during the holiday season. By holiday 2016, the smart retailers will be not just creating better mobile experiences but created seamless mobile to desktop and mobile to in store experiences.

What tech innovation are you most looking forward to in 2016?
I’m very curious to see how VR is adopted in 2016. Lots of applications but just not sure if consumers are ready to embrace it.

Any other 2016 predictions?
If you’re still putting your products at the center and not the customer, you’re destined to have a very difficult 2016!

Which feature do you hope the iPhone 7 ships with?
I’m intrigued by the water proof rumors as well as the possibility of higher fidelity audio.

What personal goal are you working toward in 2016?
Build my personal brand. Help more of our customers drive meaningful business impact.

Which movie/music release are you looking forward to the most in 2016?
Rogue One

Marc Hummel is a former Content Marketing Associate for Monetate. He's also a part-time grad student at the University of Pennsylvania. He enjoys biking to work, reading, listening to podcasts/music, and eating ice cream. Usually not all at once. For more about Marc, go here.

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