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Commenting on bad football just can’t wait...

10 July 2013

I heard a thought provoking point last night at an event hosted by IT firm Reply.

Guy Phillipson, CEO of the Internet Advertising Bureau was talking about changing social media trends.

He said social media use (Facebook, Twitter etc) peaked before and after football matches at the 2010 World Cup, but dipped during the games indicating people concentrated on watching TV.

However, during the 2012 European Championships, the activity peaked during the games, showing that people where "dual screening” and reacting to the game in real time rather than waiting for it to end to make comments.

It may seem like a small detail but it shows how quickly the widespread use of technology can change behaviour. This is certainly something retailers are alive to and it will have a knock-on effect on their logistics requirements.

If retailers are increasingly looking to adapt selling strategies quickly to take advantage of trends, logistics will have to be agile and responsive to keep up. A single view of inventory is a basic building block for effective contextual marketing, added Reply’s Mark Adams.

We also heard how some retailers are looking closely at weather data on a dynamic, local basis to help target certain products.

It needn’t all be about increasing online sales though. The High Street is fighting back. We heard about face recognition in stores that would allow shops to identify customers and offer them personalised services. Shops are also also developing ways to pay that don’t require customers to queue, payment by scanning goods on the shelf, for example. So let’s not throw out the store replenishment model just yet.

Reply hosted the London event and is a broad ecosystem of IT companies, including SaaS WMS (SideUp Reply) as well as front-end eCommerce, virtual fitting room technology, cloud-based hosting services and much else.

The Italian firm turned over €495m last year compared to €86m in 2003.