PCMS’ Guide to the NRF 2018 Big Retail Show
Curious about why everyone in the industry is gathering at the NRF 2018 Big Retail Show? It’s because retailers can’t afford to miss out on the powerful ideas driving innovation in technology! This year, it is expected that more than 35,000 people will attend NRF and you don’t want to be left behind.
PCMS’ Personalised Offers Product Owner, Dave Houldsworth shares tips for navigating NRF and optimising your overall experience–whether it is choosing which innovative speaker to see, or the best place to unwind after the show. You can find him at PCMS’ booth, demonstrating how retailers should engage with customers and influence their behaviour in real-time!
Tell us a little about your role at PCMS.
I joined PCMS in September 2016 as a Product Owner, and have enjoyed every day in the company since!
Day-to-day, my job is to manage our Personalised Offers product. This involves demonstrating the product to customers and discussing how Personalised Offers can help them realise their own marketing ideas, or overcome challenges they face within the business. I also have creative input—such as deciding what we’re going to build into the product and working with the team to turn that dream into a reality!
Over the past year at PCMS, I’ve worked alongside some great people, travelled to parts of the world I never thought I’d see, and helped the Personalised Offers product grow from a list of ideas on a whiteboard, to the powerful customer engagement/marketing tool we have today.
What drew you to this industry?
You might say that it’s a bit of a family tradition! My grandfather, father and uncle have all worked in the software industry.
What exhibitors do you plan on visiting and why?
I expect I’ll spend most of the show on the PCMS booth, talking to lots of people about what we do! But in the event I get a chance to slip away and see what else is on show, I plan to take a little wander around the smaller stands to see what else is on offer. I’m particularly interested in engagement technologies which could be integrated with Personalised Offers.
What is on your list of “can’t miss sessions” at the PCMS booth?
If you’re new to PCMS and what we do, then I’d say don’t miss any of it!
I’m going to shamelessly advertise myself here, but come and talk to me about Personalised Offers! Let me take you through some of the journey’s we’ve been putting together for customers globally. My personal favourite is clipping a personalised reward to a customer’s loyalty card based on their activity on social media. Then, rewarding your customers for interacting with and spreading the word about your brand!
Can you give any tips for navigating NRF?
My advice is to get there for as soon as the doors open! There’s a lot to see at the show and plenty of exciting new ideas. I’d spend the first day looking at what’s on offer, then book appointments with our team at the booth so you can come back for demos over the following two days.
Do you have any favourite entertainment options around NRF?
If it’s your first visit to New York, you can’t go wrong with seeing the sights! Visit the Rockefeller Centre, take a stroll through Central Park and check out Times Square!
Personally, my favourite thing about New York is its wide selection of bars and restaurants. If you have the time, try to visit a prohibition-era style speakeasy. There are a few dotted around Manhattan, often with quirky secret entrances and great cocktails!
What do you predict are trending topics this year based on sessions and keynote speakers?
If you see one keynote speaker this year, make it Don Kingsborough. He’s the president of Westfield’s new “OneMarket” brand which we have been engaging with over the last few months. They have some great ideas, and it looks as though we’re going to be right in the thick of it!
How did PCMS anticipate retailer’s needs as Personalised Offers was developed?
The idea of Personalised Offers was born out of retailer’s desire to cut through traditional marketing noise and pass relevant offers to the individual customer through everyday technologies, such as social media. We’ve put together a platform that not only integrates easily with any sales channel to supply multi-channel offers, but also allows a retailer to create customer journeys in which they can be rewarded for their actions. These actions include store visits, real-time actions, multi-channel spend over time, social media interaction and even inviting their friends to participate in deals—there’s nothing like a recommendation from a friend!
We recognise that many retailers already have a number of customer engagement applications (mobile apps, digital receipts, etc.) and their own CRM system. So, we designed Personalised Offers to integrate easily with those.
Which aspect of Personalised Offers are you particularly passionate about?
For me, Personalised Offers is all about engaging with known customers in a way that is relevant to them and rewarding them for valuable actions. This could include both in-store and during their day-to-day activities. I’m particularly excited about our ability to trigger the issuance of a Personalised Offer to a customer for a number of likes on Facebook, a location-tagged Instagram post, or even the weather forecast in their area!
The NRF show takes place at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, Manhattan, on January 14th to 16th and PCMS will be exhibiting at booth #4321. See the show website for more information.