Lessons Learned at FutureVision
Thompson said that ShopRunner approaches its competition with Amazon by "finding their Achilles' heel. Every company has one. We went to a place where we could become meaningful. It's the same for you. Take advantage of your competitors' weaknesses."
He told retailers in the audience, "I ultimately believe all of you here can figure out a lot about your consumer
—the consumer you want as a customer. ... The [advertising and promotional] money that you can't [afford to spend] is on the one-transaction customer—that's a losing-transaction customer. You need to find [and retain] the customer who makes a buying decision based on other criteria besides price. ... Isn't your best customer the one who shops in-store or with a mobile device [in an omni-channel model], buys, and if they don't like it, they return it to your store? That defines you as having a strategic advantage, ensuring a long-term relationship. You have to use them as a competitive weapon. ... Your best customers do walk through those doors, and I hope you can make that channel more productive." One way, he said, is to have store associates who can provide the 25-to-40-year-old customer, who wants to know about others' experiences with a product, with an experiential account. "There's no way that associate can give insight [on a product] if he's never used it."
—that you're killing trees. You have to play by their rules."
he physically goes into Costco for a single item, "it's hard for me to avoid spending $200 there. If you get out for that, you're lucky."—which just shows that you don't have to be first with a disruptive idea—y