Thanks to all of those who joined us for the final day of the AppCommerce Virtual Festival. We heard from a host of talented and experienced speakers today including the likes of Google, Theory, Snipes and the British Fashion Council. To recap what was covered or to catch-up on the sessions you missed, read the highlights below.
We kicked off the day with a warm welcome from Jay Johnston, CTO – Poq, who shared some of the highlights from Day 2 and the from the second day of sessions held in Australia, as well as identifying what to expect from the rest of the day.
Cathy McCabe – Co-Founder & CEO at Proximity Insight
Sojin Lee – Founder at Toshi
Megan Neale – Founder at LIMITLESS Technology Limited
In our first female founder-only session our panellists explored how customer service can be changed and extended in a digital first world. These business leaders are solving unique problems including; how to crowdsource customer service providing an innovative and more flexible gig workplace, offering expert market sourced styling and sizing to your doorstep and offering in-store digital services and store colleague support – through your phone. The group went on to discuss the importance of creating a collaborative digital ecosystem which includes Poq.
Sheenu Aggarwal, App Marketing Specialist at Poq
If you’re looking to begin your app marketing journey and are unsure of where to begin, Poq’s App Marketing Specialist, Sheenu Aggarwal ran through the basics of app media planning and buying and how to measure the performance of your ad spends. In Sheenu’s talk she identified how valuable app marketing can be despite the cost of acquisition appearing higher for apps, she demonstrated that the Customer Lifetime Value (CLV), frequency of purchase, Average Order Value (AOV) and conversion rate are higher than mobile web, actually making your ad spend more efficient and seeing a greater ROI.
Sheenu finished with 5 key takeaways including:
Paul Mears, Head of Commerce Apps at Google
Harry O’Donnell, App Sales Manager, Multicategory Retail & Grocery, Google
Paul and Harry joined forces on stage to convey firstly the importance of apps as pert of a retail strategy including how 92% of mobile device time is spent in app and this holds true. Paul went on to set the scene for app commerce today as downloads in the Google Play Store during COVID-19 have outpaced holiday and Christmas 2019. Paul added to “Make your app your flagship store!” and we completely agree!
Harry went on to add that “App customers are you BEST customers”, making apps the king of convenience as app customers buy 33% more frequently, buy 34% more items, and spend 37% more than non-app users. Some powerful stats. Paul then picked up on the importance of app marketing, identifying 4 pillars of app marketing maturity and also went on to explain Google’s suite of ad products and the quick wins you can carry out to start off your app marketing strategy, from App Campaigns to Universal/App links to Firebase.
Aarron Spinley, Growth & Innovation Evangelist
In an anthropological approach to commerce Aarron began by identifying the key three key biases that help to define consumer behaviour: Confirmation bias, the Dunning Kruger effect and Cognitive Dissonance. From these biases consumers build a belief system and thi in turn influences their behaviour with retailers and brands.
In order for retailers to influence consumer behaviour, and ultimately drive sales, retailers need to aim for true personalisation and mobile is the path to this. By being the only channel that can fluidly connect the store and digital. Not only does mobile offer this connection but it has also given back ownership of the customer relationship to the customer and gives them more power and information. Aarron went on to reiterate the importance of creating connected experiences at servicing content at minimal cognitive or mental effort to the consumer to drive engagement.
Mike Hann, President & Co-Founder at Poq
Scott Lux, VP Ecommerce & Digital at Theory
Jenna Flateman Posner, VP Digital at Snipes USA
Jessica Ramirez, Retail Analyst at Jane Hali & Associates
Andy Burton, CEO at Tryzens
This panel brought together insights from across the US retail industry into the shape of omnichannel in light of the recent global pandemic. Jessica stated that unsurprisingly digital has been an important channel during the pandemic but those retailers who were ahead with their omnichannel strategies with services like curbside pick-up and BOPIS already in place managed to dodge the bullet of closing stores and continue to service customers.
Andy went on to explain that consumer confidence to go back to the stores is an issue that retailers will have to navigate and try to mitigate by connecting the experience online and offline. He added that there is now a broader audience online. And post-COVID many retailers are still seeing 20-30% uplift in digital customers after the peak of lockdown. He claims it’s easier to predict what you can do on a digital channel than predicting physical footfall because you’re in control of more factors.
Jenna added that at Snipes, they actually saw 300-600% growth during the peak of COVID and are still seeing 150-350% growth – a “hyper growth mode” as she put it. This amounts to a perfect storm of acquisition strategy for Snipes. The business plans to double or even quadruple down on marketing spend and go after acquisition for the holiday period.
Conversely, Scott explained that unlike the streetwear retailer Snipes, at Theory, typically a workwear brand, things are different. He explained that there are 3 key channels for distribution, wholesale, retail and digital. This meant that when COVID hit, it had a multitude of impacts on the business as wholesale and retail closed putting an added pressure on digital. This forced the business to pivot it’ messaging and communication strategy. He stated that if brands want to embrace a customer-first mentality they need to look at both qualitative and quantitative research and learn how to innovate for now and for the future.
Caroline Rush, CEO at British Fashion Council
Zadrian Smith, International Director at Zadrian Smith Studio
Jason Knight, Founder at Culture & Commerce
Bera Kalhan, Senior People Partner at Poq
To conclude the AppCommerce Virtual Festival 2020 our panel joined together on stage to discuss diversity and inclusion in fashion. From the catwalk to the boards and to every role throughout the workplace lasting change needs to be made. As Zadrian put so eloquently, “I hope we don’t make humanity a trend” and that we need to get beyond ‘tokenism’ to bring about change everlasting.
Jason went on to comment that we all need to take a Gen Z mindset meaning that we need to look for meaningful connections from brands and businesses like Gen Z do because they have so many people vying for their attention. Businesses need to show they are transparent, honest and show integrity to influence those buying their products. And diversity and inclusion needs to be treated as an opportunity, not a threat.
It was a real privilege to have this panel of experts join us to share their thoughts about diversity and inclusion in the Fashion industry and in the workplace. The globe has seen a struggle to overcome racism, discrimination and bias and this year saw the tragic deaths of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor which triggered protests around the world.
It was great to hear the British Fashion Council have set out on a journey to end discriintation and promote diversity and inclusion both within the council itself and within the fashion industry. Bera also explained how Poq is working towards lasting change within the business and she identified how other businesses can think about making a change too.
This session had a great level of audience participation and was definitely a highlight of the AppCommmerce Virtual Festival. We will be sharing a link to the recordings of all the sessions from this festival to those that registered. To watch this session specifically or any of the sessions from the festival if you didn’t register, be sure to subscribe to our newsletter to be notified when the videos become available to watch.