Why brands need faces and franchises in the platform age… & more [This Week Today]

By Marc Hummel

January 6, 2017

Welcome to This Week Today, your dose of must-read marketing and tech stories from the past seven days. Here’s vol. #seventy-two for Friday 1.6.2017

1. New Pew report on ecommerce and shopping preferences [Pew]

“But even as a sizeable majority of Americans have joined the world of ecommerce, many still appreciate the benefits of brick-and-mortar stores. 64% of Americans indicate that, all things being equal, they prefer buying from physical stores to buying online.”

2. Why brands need faces and franchises in the platform age [AdAge]

“Social networks are democratic and open to institutions of all kinds. However, at their heart they exist primarily for connecting people. The businesses that stress a storytelling approach that prioritizes delivery through credible, authentic, and proximate peer faces vs faceless brands will be more successful.”

3. How Artificial Intelligence is changing the retail experience for consumers [Forbes]

“For example, 1800-Flowers.com created Gifts When You Need, a new AI-powered gift concierge that behaves like your own ‘personal assistant.’ Through a series of questions, it can get smarter and predict the type of gift that might be most appropriate for somebody.”

4. Here come ‘smart stores’ with robots, interactive shelves [AP]

“At a Kroger store in Cold Spring, Ohio, shelves currently show digitized price tags and information about the products. The next step is to tie that to individual shoppers. For example, for a shopper who prefers gluten-free products, the price tags could light up in the aisle where all the gluten-free options are.”

5. Inside the in-house data teams of three fashion brands [Glossy]

Burberry “captures data [including] browsing behavior, foot traffic in stores, and anonymous data from social media platforms. They then analyze the data to inform decisions around retail, marketing, merchandising, and planning, as well as to improve digital platforms in terms of design, content and site performance.”

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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