On August 22, 2019, Asia Pacific’s Premier Supply Chain Conference, Weave 360 returned, at The Mills Fabrica, a global tech style space and community for sustainable entrepreneurs based in Hong Kong. Hosting an array of international and local guest speakers, this year’s conference was home to many insightful presentations and panels that shared a wealth of insight on how to “Unlock Your Retail Value Chain.” From marketers to founders, the full-day event consisted of speakers from the whole value chain, from global footwear, apparel, and retail tech industries.
Alongside fellow sponsors Centric Software and SAP, Chain of Demand held a booth that exhibited their services, while the CEO/Founder, AJ Mak, gave a presentation on how artificial intelligence is fashion’s perfect fit. Speaking in the same category were fellow influential leaders of the industry, David Bell and Andreas Krasser. The following summarizes the important points of their talks:
Winning in the digital millennial economy
In his talk, Bell commented on how Millennial customers are more educated and diverse and are entering their prime spending years, with some key Millennials psychographics being as follows:
- Seeking experiential experiences
- Desiring convenience
- Making a difference in the world
- Preferring quality and customization
- Being well-informed
In today’s world, Millennials have the opportunity to engage in new buying journies due to external forces like the retail apocalypse or invention of movies/TV home streaming services, and as a result, more retail stores have been closing and more consumers are choosing to forgo the movie theatre. Thus, to survive, businesses need to incorporate digital into the customer journey and engage with their customers – crowdsourcing for ideas or good storytelling.
Ultimately, brands that collect data from the beginning, throughout the journey are poised for success. For retailers to truly succeed, they will need unified commerce to succeed in today’s world.
Influencer marketing: shortcut to fame or failure
As a veteran marketer, Krasser gives his input into the growing industry of influencer marketing, where he notes the difficulty in managing a brand in the 21st century. Not only are consumers savvy, but they are avoiding ads altogether and using ad blockers, and skipping ads.
When it comes to influencers, they can be segmented into mega, macro and micro-influencers and will generate USD $10 billion by 2020. However, even with this growing group, consumers are smarter than ever before and know when posts are sponsored. Too many times, retailers and brands get carried away by followers, but it is important to note that followers do not translate into sales. In fact, fraudulent influencer activity ends up costing USD 1.3B.
For this reason, anti-influencer marketing is a trend we see on the uptick and so to avoid these problems, Krasser provides the top 5 influencer marketing tips:
- Lead with a big idea – Don’t expect influencers to solve your brand problems or gain traction just because they are an influencer.
- Match the brand with the influencer – Do not just get any influencer, but make sure that what they represent fits with what you are selling.
- Provide a concise brief – Ensure that the influencer is briefed with what the brand is about and how you want to go about marketing.
- Have a crisis strategy – Sometimes, things can go wrong with the marketing campaign and/or the influencer may post something on their page that makes things go belly up. For this reason, make sure to have a crisis strategy in plan.
- Create your own influencer – Retailers and brands should try to learn to create their own mascot, cartoon, or symbol that acts as their own influencer.