|| The Perspective
Wednesday, 25 February 2015
Interactive Customer Experience Association (ICXA) will host its first annual ICX Summit in Chicago on June 29-30, 2015.
Louisville, KY (PRWEB) - Networld Media Group today announces the launch of the Interactive Customer Experience Association (ICXA), which will promote and accelerate the convergence of customer experience technologies and disciplines across all consumer channels.
“The need for ICXA reflects a rising emphasis among brands to create superior customer experiences through multiple technologies,” said Networld Media Group’s CEO, Tom Harper. “Our membership unites professionals from such disciplines as customer experience and service, loyalty, merchandising, marketing, sales, and retail operations.”
Technologies employed by these innovators encompass CRM, POS, digital display, self-service, e- and m-commerce, mobile payment, and much more. ICXA represents a broadening of scope to understand how various technologies can be combined to create unique and unprecedented consumer experiences.
ICXA will host its first annual ICX Summit in Chicago on June 28-30, 2015. Keynote speakers include Blaine Hurst, EVP of Panera Bread and Paul Price, CEO of Creative Realities.
The soon-to-be-launched ICXA.org website will feature a members-only education archive, including videos, webinars and podcasts covering the association’s educational activities. The site will also offer an industry blog and supplier directory.
To jumpstart its launch, ICXA is merging with and absorbing the full membership of the Digital Screenmedia Association (DSA), which had focused previously on the self-service, kiosk, and digital signage technology segments.
“The DSA board is excited about this new direction,” said Bill Lynch, DSA president and new ICXA board member. “The emerging customer experience market encompasses all of our member industries and much more. Our research into market trends and member needs finds most DSA members either expanding into broader customer experience solutions or aligning with partner companies. It became clear that our association must evolve to better serve the expanding needs of our members.”
Existing DSA members will receive full membership in ICXA and enjoy increased benefits with additional learning, networking and peer groups. Technology innovators and suppliers will be invited to participate as instructors in a new online learning series.
Under the leadership of Executive Director Scott Slucher, the new ICXA will continue to expand and develop membership across such industry verticals as banking and payments, retail and restaurant, healthcare, hotel and entertainment, education and government. Slucher brings to his new role many years of professional experience in sales and marketing, digital media, and market research disciplines. His specialty is helping organizations make deeper connections within their industries.
About Networld Media Group
Founded in 2000, Networld Media Group is a leading business-to-business (B2B) media communications company specializing in digital media, associations and events in the mobile, self-service, digital signage, retail, food service and financial services industries. Online properties include ATMmarketplace.com, DigitalSignageToday.com, FastCasual.com, PizzaMarketplace.com, KioskMarketplace.com, MobilePaymentsToday.com, VirtualCurrencyToday.com, QSRweb.com, RetailCustomerExperience.com and ChurchCentral.com. The company produces executive summits in the fast casual, retail, ATM and mobile payments industries. Its custom media division develops Web sites, premium content and marketing services for associations such as the ATM Industry Association and the Electronic Funds Transfer Association.
Tuesday, 09 July 2013
By David Anzia, Frank Mayer & Associates, Inc.
Two big motivators are pushing retailers to transcend walled-off commerce and implement omni-channel strategies. The first is connected consumers who have expectations of both individualized and seamless interactions with retailers. The second is the pressure certain retailers are feeling from shoppers engaged in showrooming and the unrelenting competition from online retailers like Amazon, who are the beneficiaries of that behavior.
You need only to attend a retail conference or engage a few retail executives in conversation to understand the need for speed in overcoming infrastructure hurdles to erase the barriers between consumer touchpoints. More than half of respondents to RSR’s 2013 Cross Channel Benchmark survey feel consumer expectations outpace their ability to deliver on a consistent retail experience.
On the consumer-facing side of this retail upheaval, continuity of experience – enabled by engaging interactive merchandising, a choice of self-service options and informed assisted selling – will be the driver for garnering the loyalty of digitally savvy Millennial shoppers. Those are the shoppers that will account for nearly a third of retail sales by the end of the decade.
As an in-store merchandising company whose projects often involve bridging retail channels, it is clear to us that omni-channel retailing offers benefits that transcend the challenges of implementation. Beyond the infrastructure changes and organizational realignments required is a vision for attracting and retaining high value customers and driving greater sales.
Improved Customer Perception
Customers expect integration and will become impatient waiting for it to become a reality. The blurring of channels isn’t just a retail phenomenon. It is advancing into other aspects of consumers’ lives like entertainment, where two-screen viewing is becoming a behavioral norm. Retailers are in a transitional time where speed of implementation can be differentiating and brand-building or slow response can be frustrating and damaging.
Retailers who have inventory visibility and availability in the customer’s channel of choice have a better opportunity to complete the sale. The proof of this tenant is in the success of department store shopping kiosks and category tablet kiosks that give shoppers access to a wider selection and provide multiple points of access to complete the purchase. Consumers who shop across channels are actually spending more with their favorite retailers.
Better Data Collection
Visibility across channels means a more customized experience. Retailers that can track customers across channels and understand preferences can better serve their customers. They also gain insights into crafting offers that motivate customers to get out from behind their screens and engaged in store, where the likelihood of impulse purchase is greater.
An omni-channel strategy can arm store associates with tools that increase access to information and promote efficiency. Tablets have become the front line of defense against customers armed with more information than store employees and a great offense for turning customer data into loyalty-building service.
There are benefits and best practices involved in the use of technologies – tablets, smartphones and touchscreens – that are the face of omni-channel retailing for consumers. The Convergence of the Connected Consumer and Omni-channel Retailing is a new resource we’re offering. It examines how retailers can take advantage of these tools to carry out their omni-channel strategies.
Wednesday, 31 August 2011
There was no calmness after the storm last night in Times Square for the jointly produced MXM/DSA event around convergence of screen media between digital signage and mobile.
The event had over 65 participants (standing room only) in the board room of Duane Morris overlooking the digital display wonderland of Times Square; there is even a vantage point from the room where you can see both of the massive LED screens at either end of the square at the same time.
Stu Armstrong, immediate past president of DSA and managing director, direct sales for ComQi moderated the panel session.
Bob Gold, CEO, Gold Mobile, shared with the audience about how NFC will become a key part of the digital signage as a way to not only interact, but transact at the same time. Bob also mentioned that “mobile is the disruption to take us away from traditional impression based media strategies to one of engagement in real time right in front of the display. SMS, QR codes are part of the process, but there will be so much more.”
In actuality, Jeremy Lockhorn, VP emerging media, Razorfish mentioned, “Out-of-home was always a hard placement as a media strategy as the content does not sit alongside media such as TV, radio or print. Now with digital out-of-home, the interactivity component can now make advertising marketing out of home more of a strategy with content engagement and delivery.”
“Today with interaction of digital signage you need to have a social-mobile strategy as well. Not only can you have Twitter integrated into a marketing message real-time, but down to the tweet can be controlled and moderated. Think about that whole new level of engagement,” said, Drew de Cavalho, sales, AdGent Digital.
Six Flags participated in the event with a presentation from Adam Oliveri, VP of corporate alliances, Sean Anderson, director, interactive and Lisa Checketts, manager of digital. Together they mapped out the landscape of the potential of captive audience marketing from everything around how they “geo-fence” different areas of the parks to leverage location-based services to come in the future, to how they make waiting in lines more entertaining and enjoyable.
“Today, you can interact with a digital sign with your mobile and win a spot at front of the line. We are integrating digital signage and mobile connectivity everywhere. Even though QR codes on signposts in the different waiting areas and SMS has become quite standard, we are looking to the future with our app and a variety of service integration to match our Six Flags video network,” said Adam.
Adam also mentioned one of the biggest challenges they have been able to solve with their partners was the new engagement metrics and measurement strategies. “We are building a clear model around dwell as a key part of engagement.”
The topic of measurement was strongly emphasized by all of the panelists. Tom Hennigan, partner of Times Square Domination (an ad network for the screens of Times Square) said that building impressions from one screen to multiple screens that all have interactivity has been a challenge. “We work in steps to build a campaign that grows over time to give the best for clients. ROI is critical for us and the level of brands we are dealing with for this media.”
Other challenges with measurement were discussed deal with how to connect the actual campaign to a comparison across other screens. With all the different formats it is becoming more and more complex to get a formula right across all the screens, but Jason Newport, SVP mobile for Carat said they are working hard on this as it is key to our clients.
After this success, the DSA and MXM have started to discuss when the next event will take place. Please send in comments if you would like to participate and be involved.
Following the event, John Matthews, Comscient wrote:
Congratulations on an excellent MXM event last night at a great venue with a view! The MXM event was excellent with a great panel with above average content. It was a refreshing change from many of the digital media events that take place in NYC these days. The event also attracted a better quality attendee with more mature mobile and digital out of home media industry leaders and innovators. Definitely a worthwhile and valuable event with great insights and I personally am looking forward to future events.
Check out #MXMDSA on Twitter to see related tweets.
Matthew Snyder is producer of MXM Events and CEO ADObjects, Inc.
Monday, 04 April 2011
Analytical Design Solutions Inc.
The self-service industry has another new technology to absorb: mobile devices. These devices, such as the iPad, have become more functional and are available in a broader range of products. As companies seek new technology opportunities, usage has expanded from the consumer, the original intended user, to self-service. Unfortunately, this change in usage causes security issues similar to kiosk self-service applications. Security issues are mostly unavoidable in the iPad; however, the good news is that these issues can be addressed in Android devices.
Why deploy mobile devices as self-service apps? There are a number of factors. Mobile devices are easy to connect to Wi-Fi or cellular data networks. They have mature and intuitive touch screen interfaces. They also have the flexibility to be mounted in a fixed kiosk pedestal or to be deployed as a true mobile device. Since mobile devices were designed for consumer use, and therefore not made to last as long as higher-quality OEM devices, mobile devices usually cost significantly less.
What applications are well suited for mobile devices? The sky is the limit, within the constraints of the hardware, including hospitality, retail, health-care and even construction. For example, health-care providers have begun offering paperless check-ins and hotels have used mobile devices to display all of their services electronically within each room.
The Apple iOS iPad was the initial breakthrough tablet device, but since its introduction there have been many Google Android tablet devices announced. Despite being first to market and such a success that it opened the self-service industry to the possibilities of mobile devices, the iOS operating system is surprisingly not well-suited for self-service. Self-service imposes many demands on an operating system that are far different from the standard consumer use of the device; unfortunately, by having a closed operating system, Apple has tied the hands of anyone wishing to write robust self-service applications. On the other hand, Android has an extremely open operating system that is well-suited for self-service. When Microsoft ships Windows 8, which is planned to target mobile devices, then it too will be a viable platform for self-service.
However, similar to the difference between a PC used in self-service and one used in a consumer environment, the mobile device needs to be protected from abuse, negligent or not, by the self-service user. The user’s personal information needs to be similarly protected, since the device will be used next by a complete stranger. This protection takes many forms.
Protect the desktop/launcher
It is critical to prevent the user from accessing the desktop/app launcher. The user should be allowed to run the specified application, but prevented from configuring or executing any other applications as well as downloading and installing any new applications.
If the application uses a browser, and most will, it is important to ensure the user is limited only to the domains or pages allowed. In addition, if displaying Internet Web pages, then links such as mailto tags or file downloads need to be blocked. When the user has finished, all traces of that user’s presence on the device must be removed.
An important aspect of any self-service deployment is the ability to remotely monitor the device to determine its current status. Is your application running? Are any components reporting errors? For a mobile device, the requirements can expand to include also the physical location of the device and the battery life remaining.
Mobile devices have one major drawback: they are mobile. It is important for the user to a) know the device needs to be returned, b) indicate to the user when the device is about to leave an approved operation area and c) lock down the device and provide retrieval information to the deployer when the device has left the approved operation area.
Mobile devices have great promise to improve the self-service experience; however, there are challenges to mobility that must be addressed. Today, Android OS is the best platform for self-service.
Jim Kruper is president of Analytical Design Solutions Inc., developers of KioWare kiosk software.