Performance Marketing, Retail

Top Takeaways from Bluecore’s “Beyond Transactional Commerce”

BY: Dylan Day Digital Media Strategist

PUBLISHED: 3/16/2021

Our partners at Bluecore pulled together not just great content, but an experience around the shift from transactional to personal commerce in their latest keynote broadcast. With such a unique spin on “The Webinar,” we felt this was one of those events that perfectly capitalized on the nature of our current environment.

Bluecore’s team, alongside Ascena’s VP of Performance Marketing Eric Gohs, brought to us in our living rooms (or our home offices, wherever they may be) a deep dive into Lane Bryant’s digital transformation into the realm of personalization.

We compiled our key takeaways from this webinar but also encourage you to view it since personalization is so timely for brands right now.

Here are a few quotes we thought were relevant to today’s digital marketing ecosystem, especially with the changes to the way marketers are using data.

“They [the customer] expect the same level of highly curated expertise about products along with an intimate understanding of their affinities and preferences that the best digital platforms like Netflix and Spotify provide. Competing digitally in retail is not just about retail. It’s about all the other places where consumers spend time online, and the only way to stay competitive is to focus on elevating the customer experience to the same level” – Fayez Mohamood, Co-Founder & CEO, Bluecore

Customers are accustomed to the highly curated nature of the digital platforms they use for entertainment and the result of that is the expectation for great online experience. To give them anything less than that level of personalization and curation is to risk leaving the customer unsatisfied and less likely to convert or become a repeat customer. It’s imperative to provide an online shopping experience that flows with the same fluidity the customer experiences browsing Netflix or Hulu in their downtime.

“There has been an overemphasis on customer data with a complete neglect of product data, the key asset of every retailer. In retail, it’s always been about the product as much as the customer yet every system that manages the customer experience has no context about your products. Beth is not just a female that lives in Chicago. She’s a female in Chicago that is looking for a particular product of a certain size, style, price, fabric, fit, and other preferences. It is not just about the customer data but the link between customer data and product data that holds the key to predicting intent, affinities, conversion, and, above all, lifetime value” – Fayez Mohamood, Co-Founder & CEO, Bluecore

Particularly enlightening in this keynote broadcast were the trends showing that acquired data focuses quite heavily on the customer data at the expense of product data. While customer data is, of course, critical to success, it’s important to not neglect the product side of the data equation. The products your customer views and shows interest in are critical to create the customer profile and paint a more detailed picture of who your customer is.

“[Predictive intelligence] continues to learn as the business changes and shoppers engage” – Eric Gohs, VP of Performance Marketing, Ascena Retail Group

We find this same idea to be true—and necessary—in our client base. Utilizing predictive intelligence can cause massive increases in both your campaigns’ efficiency and revenue per email, thus allowing you to confidently scale your media spend.

“That gap between transactional commerce and personal commerce is what retailers need to bridge to capture [the customer’s] attention and loyalty. The increasing shift to online shopping is widening that gap because the typical mass-marketing formula that was built around physical stores is no longer sufficient to meet shopper needs” – Sherene Hilal, SVP of Marketing, Bluecore

It’s time to move beyond the thinking used when marketing for brick-and-mortar retail locations. While physical retail is not going away, that way of thinking just doesn’t cut it in online space. Just as Netflix doesn’t organize their user interface in the way a Blockbuster Video store was organized, online consumer experiences cannot be as broad and generic as a physical storefront. Highly personalized experiences are the norm in online spaces, and a marketing campaign that does not follow suit will leave the consumer as either a one-time buyer who forgets about your brand or even worse as someone who doesn’t convert.


Originally authored on by Dylan Day, Digital Partnerships Specialist.