Westfield Shopping CentreWestfield shopping centre, Stratford, London - 30 Jun 2012

Change is never easy.

It’s even more difficult when said updates require the removal of software and solutions that have been cobbled together with little relation, other than the fact that they rely on the other entirely — it’s the Lincoln logs of technology. Traditional retailers, once the champion for then new solutions are now faced with unknotting a tightly wound web of platforms in order to extract themselves from systems that are slowly putting them out of business.

And as if that wasn’t enough, young brands that have adopted direct-to-consumer models, founded on nimble, agile platforms almost add insult to injury. It’s a punishing climate that requires traditional retailers to shift systems quickly and extend omnichannel shopping journeys to increasingly fickle consumers.

“When it comes to social media, users’ thumbs may do the talking, but the platforms they are chatting on are the real gateways into the collective conversation,” said Nielsen’s 2016 social media report. “After all, without an instrument that activates social media, consumers would simply be talking.”

According to Nielsen’s research, nearly 177 million U.S. adults used social media in 2016 — consider the touch points and data available for analysis in just that channel alone. In order to capture said insights, a cohesive and holistic platform that not only deploys solutions, but collects the necessary details from the platforms is an integral component of a winning brand strategy.

Lifting siloed departments and increasing transparency to improve communication across departments is a first of many necessary steps to remaining relevant and delivering captivating experiences to coveted consumers.

More from WWD:

What Net Neutrality Means for E-commerce

What Salesforce, Google Partnership Signals to Retailers

Technology Evolves, Poised to Revitalize Consumer Experiences

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