Tag Archives: positioning

Sam’s Club Now Goes Cashier Free

Amazon isn’t the only company working on reinventing the retail experience. While the Amazon Go stores have captured consumers’ attention and shoppers at its cashier-less grocery stores, it’s not the only retailer interested in using technology to improve the customer shopping experience. Walmart recently announced that it is opening Sam’s Club Now, also cashier-less, in Dallas. The company describes its new store as a “technology lab that doubles as a live, retail club.” At 32,000 square feet it isn’t quite a compact store, but it is significantly smaller than the typical Sam’s Club store.

Similar to Amazon Go, in order to shop at Sam’s Club Now, members will need to use a Sam’s Club app that allows customers to scan UPC codes as they shop and check themselves out when done shopping. The app also includes smart shopping lists, in-store voice search and maps, augmented reality for new in-store experiences, and one-hour pickup.

Employees don’t go away – they instead shift to a new role called the Member Host. These associates are the face of the company and will use technology to help them serve Sam’s Club members better. Sam’s Club stated that the “future of retail is as much about people as it is about technology.”

If you’re in Dallas, check it out.

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss the use of innovation throughout retail.
  2. Review Sam’s Club Now announcement and video: https://corporate.samsclub.com/blog/2018/10/29/sams-club-now-reimagining-the-future-of-retail
  3. Compare this with Amazon Go: https://www.amazon.com/b?ie=UTF8&node=16008589011
  4. What are the similarities, and differences, between the two services?
  5. How should the two companies position against each other?

Source:  Advertising Age, New York Times, other news sources

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Autonomous Luggage Cart Helps in Airports

Ah, the glamor of travel! Jetting off to exciting places, carrying pounds of luggage and goods… Oh wait, that luggage part isn’t very exciting, in fact, it is downright annoying. How many times have you looked forward to a trip, only to be exhausted and sore from lugging around a bunch of suitcases and bags? Unfortunately, that’s the reality of travel, and it is not glamorous.

But now you can relax a little and enjoy the airport experience more. To help out its weary travelers, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines is launching an autonomous, self-driving luggage trolley to guide passengers through the airport and carry their bags. The blue cart (named Care-E) greets passengers once they are past security. The passenger will be prompted to scan a boarding pass and will be guided by Care-E to any location in the airport. And, of course Care-E carries all of the bulky and heavy luggage (up to 85 pounds).

Care-E moves at a human walking pace of 3 miles/hour and uses familiar, nonverbal sounds to interact with passengers. The bright blue self-driving trolley can take passengers directly to their gates, even if the gate has changed.

Air travel is so much better when someone else totes the bags!

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Poll students: What has been their experience travelling with luggage in airports? How could airlines improve this?
  2. Show the Care-E video: https://youtu.be/_Hio_YN77EE
  3. Review key aspects of developing a product positioning map, including determining the axis labels for positioning.
  4. For air travel, who are KLM’s competitors?
  5. Divide students into teams and have each team develop a positioning map for airlines.
  6. How can KLM use Care-E to position itself against competing airlines?
  7. Have each team draw their map on the board.
  8. Debrief exercise.

Source: Brandchannel.com, CNN, other news sources

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New Cereal Brand – Tiny Toast

Toast

It seems we’ve heard it all our lives – breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Yet, the consumption of breakfast foods such as cereal has been declining. Some articles even go so far as to state that eating cereal takes too much work and time in the morning (all that pouring of cereal and milk takes time!). Yet, the breakfast food category remains strong even though it is mature.

General Mills has developed a new brand of breakfast cereal called “Tiny Toast.” This is the first new brand from the company in 15 years. The cereal pieces are shaped like toast (of course) and come in flavors including strawberry and blueberry and pieces are covered with sprinkles of real fruit. There are no artificial flavors or colors, and no high-fructose corn syrup. Each serving has 13 grams of whole grains – and 9 grams of sugar.

Breakfast, anyone?

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Discuss food habits and breakfast consumption with students.
  2. Poll students: Who eats breakfast each day? What do they eat? What cereals do they consume?
  3. Show the Web site for the new product:

http://tinytoastcereal.tumblr.com/thecereals

  1. Review key aspects of developing a product positioning map, including determining the axis labels for positioning.
  2. Review the product. What products are competitors?
  3. Divide students into teams and have each team develop a positioning map for the new product.
  4. Have each team draw their map on the board.
  5. Debrief exercise.

Source: Minneapolis Star Tribune, Brandchannel.com, other news sources

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