The intersection of CX and digital signage

The intersection of CX and digital signage

By Lyle Bunn, Principal, BUNN Co.

The customer experience area of business practice and focus has blossomed like desert flowers, with the ability to bring color to what would otherwise be an uninteresting and dismal landscape.

Customer experience, or CX, is a catch-all phrase rooted in the business goals of revenue generation. Its intention is to optimize customer acquisition and revenue per customer, while minimizing losses. It may appear to be rooted in warm, fuzzy consumer feelings, but it is fully about minimizing business costs and maximizing ROI by providers related to targeted customers.

Peter Drucker observed, "Because the purpose of business is to create a customer, the business enterprise has two — and only two — basic functions: Marketing and innovation. Marketing and innovation produce results; all the rest are costs. Marketing is the distinguishing, unique function of the business."

CX has become the string of the bow and used to launch the arrows of branding and merchandising tactics from the quiver of marketing. CX is the very essence of marketing. As competition has driven so many enterprises to their knees, CX is not just a worthy, but also an essential pursuit.  

In today's choice-rich consumer climate, CX is perhaps the greatest differentiator, which, when done well, reflects successful marketing. Analysis paralysis means that actions indicated by the insights that gathered fail to be acted on.

In opening the recent Shoptalk retail conference, Ron Johnson, CEO of Enjoy, an online services startup, said, "Stores are incredibly challenged. Over the past 20 years stores have been in a relative decline" referencing the growth of and citing some high profile brick and mortar closings and declines."

"That narrative is all wrong," responded Jerry Storch, CEO of Hudson's Bay Company, which operates under its own brand as well as Saks 5th Avenue, Lord & Taylor, the Gilt online boutique site and Germany's Galeria Kaufof. "90.2% of sales are still in stores. Amazon still only controls 1.5% of U.S. retail sales."

Storch described a status quo where nearly all retail transactions are digitally influenced or involve at least one digital touch point. In the all-channel purchase process, "82% of online retail interactions involve stores at some point," he said, while "70% of digital interactions create a store visit by the customer."

A panel at the upcoming ICX Summit, June 1-3 in Dallas, is titled "Phygital — Blending physical and digital." Jean Pierre Lacroix, CEO of Shikatani Lacroix Design Inc, will use case study examples to describe how a significantly improved customer experience can be created by advancing all key brand performance indicators through point of influence and immersive digital. Lacroix said, "The opportunity to capture the consumer's imagination is all too fleeting. It can be gone in the blink of an eye."

Digital messaging at the point of consumer decision-making uses CX insights. "Voice of the Customer" — an operating element of CX — transaction and observation data can inform the messaging and digital engagement strategy.

Digital media provider STRATACACHE, which serves Walmart, McDonald's and many other brands, reflects the embracing of analytics to drive place-based digital optimization and the key to increasing sales potential by understanding guest behavior.

"With the move to all-in-one digital signage and interactive solutions, brands, retailers and other consumer facing organizations can seamlessly collect vast amounts of data on campaign efficacy, consumer interaction and engagement analytics" said Jeff Griffin, EVP of Retail Media Networks. "In the Store of the Now, customer behavior can be better understood, and we can use those real time insights to optimize the physical space almost like a website. Predictive and proscriptive analytics can be monitored via customized dashboards, driving more relevant, more personalized communications."

CX analytics increasingly means reaching beyond a single brand's data. "Consumer marketers can't determine the success of their programs without information about their competitors' campaigns," said Cory Rosenfield, co-founder of Qoints Inc. "All marketers know they must collect data, but most don't know what to do with it once they have it."

"Qoints is a collaborative repository for digital marketing data," Rosenfield added. "We collect consumer marketers' campaign data and their competitors' marketing campaign data, masking these data before then providing it to advertising agencies and brand marketers who use it to increase their products' market share. We help marketers set objective benchmarks and understand results in order to improve the overall effectiveness of their digital marketing budgets."

Customer experience analytics are positioned within the enterprise to shed light on customer frustrations and desires, while indicating the degree to which elements of operation support or detract from success. In particular, CX can drive marketing productivity with the intention of maximizing return on communications investment.

Where investment in physical locations such as stores, restaurants, hospitality, entertainment, sports and transportation venues, the workplace or campus is core to the success of the business, CX can inform the onsite messaging and digital engagement.

Lyle Bunn provides digital media industry analysis, education and counsel. He can be reached at

Topics: Advertising, Associations / Events, Audience Measurement, Banks / Financial, Customer Experience, Digital Merchandising, DOOH Advertising, Education / Schools, Entertainment Venues, Hotels, Marketing, Restaurants, Retail, Retail Digital Signage, ROI, Stadiums / Arenas, Transportation, Transportation / Travel, Trends / Statistics

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