Exponea Launches “New Normal” Framework to Help Marketers Deliver Growth Post-Pandemic

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Designed specifically for retail and e-commerce, the framework assesses readiness and response capabilities for a rapidly changing, volatile market; delivers next steps and resources for business survival

Exponea, the global market-leading Customer Data and Experience Platform (CDXP), launched its “New Normal” framework in response to COVID-19. The framework includes a comprehensive self-assessment exercise, placement on the New Normal Ecommerce Quadrant, and a tailored step-by-step guide to improving a company’s position based on results.

Volatility in customer behavior patterns has drastically increased since the global shelter-in-place mandate, making an already challenging landscape even more unpredictable. In order for businesses everywhere to sustain and grow during this time — particularly those being forced into digital transformation out of necessity —  Exponea advocates for maturity improvement in two primary areas:

  • Understanding customers: a continuously updated view of how customer behaviors are changing moment to moment
  • Understanding capabilities: implementing the digital capabilities needed to execute on understanding; specifically those related to omnichannel communication and quick response times

The New Normal assessment aims to gauge a company’s standing in these two areas and deliver the next steps needed to immediately begin improving their odds of survival.

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“Retailers are going to feel the effects of shelter-in-place for a long time, whether or not the mandate is lifted,” said Peter Irikovsky, CEO and Co-Founder of Exponea. “Just in the last few weeks, our users have seen an influx of customers, fewer touchpoints to purchase, traditional channels outperforming ‘smart’ or AI-powered channels, wildly different email behaviors, and so on. Their success in the face of all this has been the ability to repeatedly pivot in an instant. We released this framework because we believe it delivers a powerful, yet simple directive for surviving and thriving in the ‘new normal,’ and we want every retailer to be able to take advantage of these insights and launch their digital transformation with the right steps.”

One such example of Exponea’s ability to enable quick pivoting is OluKai, a footwear company with a rich history in Hawaii. In response to COVID-19, they wanted to create supportive messaging that still fit within their brand values, rather than simply address the pandemic. The team initiated a brainstorming session and came up with the idea for a new campaign on Thursday, March 12th. The campaign went live on Friday, March 13th and managed to surpass their average campaign performance.

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“OluKai is committed to doing what it takes to overcome COVID-19,” said Steven Johnson, Director of eCommerce. “As health and safety are paramount in every aspect of our business, we’re currently working from home (in sandals) and offering unlimited paid sick leave. Instead of leading with that, our goal with this campaign and everything else we do is to keep sharing our aloha with you, no matter where you are. Exponea allows us to communicate more personally, directly with our consumers in record time. This campaign would have been much more challenging to execute before integrating Exponea into our team.”

Developed based on the exhaustive research of their own clients, Exponea’s self-assessment places subjects in a New Normal Ecommerce Quadrant:

  • Traditionalist: Companies new to online experiences; likely forced to change by shelter-in-place or started just shortly before. Business survival is at risk.
  • New Normal Theorist: Companies with good insights into their customers, but are lacking the ability to execute quickly on all channels. Performance is at risk.
  • New Normal Experimentalist: Companies with advanced omni-channel execution capabilities, but lacking insight into their customers’ changing behaviors. Loyalty is at risk.
  • New Normal Leader: Companies that are prepared for the new normal. They can benefit from ideas for advanced use cases, but they have the foundation needed to succeed in this new environment.

The assessment is free, and participants are sent resources based on their results that are designed to help quickly identify and prioritize their next steps. Early results include those of an unnamed client in the fashion e-commerce industry, which revealed vastly different shopping times and entry points, as well as an unexpected spike in Outlook 2016 usage.

Exponea’s “New Normal” launch follows its announcement of free access to the Web-layers Starter product during the month of April. Designed for crisis communications, the tool streamlines communications between companies and their customers by using HTML/CSS/Javascript to deliver information, unlike typical pop-up banners which are often stopped by ad blockers.

“We want retailers and ecommerce businesses to know that it’s more than possible to generate revenue and transform your brand and that we’re here to help that effort in any way we can,” said Amanda Elam, Exponea’s Chief Marketing Officer. “These are uncertain times, but as marketers, we cannot accept uncertainty in our technology, our data, or our ability to execute. Exponea is dedicated to providing real value that marketers can count on, both now and in the future.”

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