As the emcee at Ayantek’s SMACdown event at the 2013 FutureM Conference, my role was to set the stage for the SMACdown where two teams of marketing and technology experts in boxing robes were presenting their perspective on the SMAC Stack. The “Marketing Mavericks” team responded to a challenge from BJ’s Wholesale Club and the “Digital Dynamos” presented a solution for a challenge from iRobot Corporation. Through these two business challenges, each team demonstrated that Social, Mobile, Analytics, and Cloud (SMAC) technologies when adopted in a combined and holistic manner can exponentially increase business productivity and deliver superior user engagement. Below is my quick recap and the key takeaways I took away from the SMACdown event:
BJ’s Wholesale Club:
BJ’s Wholesale club wanted to identify new ways to enhance shopping experience and drive more sales. The “Marketing Mavericks” solution leveraged the extensive analytical data, already present with BJ’s, to provide timely, highly customized and relevant offers and rewards to its members. The solution included:
- Social: Leveraging social channels such as Facebook to promote and share these offers and build the brand
- Mobile: Simultaneously using the mobile device to deliver customized suggestions to existing members, provide shopping list and wish list development, coupon searches and refill reminders to make the shopping experience special
- Analytics & Cloud: Utilizing cloud technologies to manage and process the huge analytical data generated, helping maximize the targeted customer experience through a live stock of the store inventory
iRobot, a company that designs and builds robots for a wide variety of applications and industries, issued a challenge to drive customer awareness of Robotics technology and expand the iRobot brand footprint. The “Digital Dynamos” solution focused on a combination of the home consumer and engineering audience – the two key audiences for Robotics technology. For the consumer audience the team presented “MyBot” – a social marketing campaign which consisted of:
- Social: Allowing consumers to upload fun and engaging videos showing their robots in use within their homes and social rating/ranking.
- Mobile: Consumers using their mobile devices would capture these videos and then rate/rank videos for a global robot contest.
- Analytics: Utilize analytics data from “MyBot” campaign to create synergy throughout the iRobot product lines
- Cloud: Leveraging cloud technology to create a robot design platform to engage entrepreneurs and designers
Here are my three key takeaways from the SMACdown event
The SMAC Stack is applicable for any industry and any type of business challenge: BJ’s SMAC Stack solution was intended to reach a retail consumer audience through a mobile app and personalized offers sent directly via social notifications. iRobot’s SMAC Stack solution was for a home consumer and engineering audience. Two completely different businesses, two completely different audiences, yet the SMAC Stack framework worked for both.
The SMAC Stack can be adopted for both short-term AND long-term business goals: Whether you are putting together a short-term marketing campaign to build brand awareness or developing a long term strategy for gaining market share, the SMAC Stack will enable you to have great success. BJ’s had a shorter and immediate goal of engaging more members and enhance customer experience. iRobot had a long term goal of building a cohesive strategy to market all their products with such a diverse market. Both solutions proved that whether you are planning a campaign that will last a week or a decade long growth strategy, the SMAC Stack provides a foundational framework that all marketing strategies can be built upon.
The SMAC Stack helps realize the combined power of Social, Mobile, Analytics, Cloud technologies: A wise man once said “The whole is greater than the sum of its parts” and he could well have been talking about the SMAC Stack. Marketers normally think about Social and Mobile as separate channels. KPI’s and back-end processing technologies tend to be an after-thought or sometimes are never thought through. Through the BJ’s and iRobot solutions, the teams showcased why it was important for Marketers to consider all four pillars (Social, Mobile, Analytics, and the Cloud) of the SMAC Stack framework when designing targeted marketing campaigns.