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By: IBM via PR Newswire
May 22, 2012 at 09:43 AM EDT
IBM Smarter Commerce Helps Chief Marketing Officers Engage the Individual on Mobile and Social Media Channels
New Software and Services Enable Marketers to Deliver a Personalized Digital Customer Experience

MADRID, May 22, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- At the Smarter Commerce Global Summit, IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced new software and services to help chief marketing officers (CMO) deliver personalized digital experiences to individual customers on mobile devices and social media channels.

The growing focus on delivering personalized communications to consumers is being driven by the explosion of social media and mobile devices. Today, more than 1500 social media blog posts are generated every 60 seconds(1) and mobile commerce is poised reach $200 billion by 2015(2).

Building on this digital explosion, IBM is accelerating its Smarter Commerce initiative with new software and services that help marketers gain immediate intelligence on consumer shopping trends and quickly act on that information based on customer preference through marketing and promotion activities. 

For example, while one consumer may browse for merchandise from their mobile device that same consumer may tend to make more purchases from their tablet.  Gaining the ability to act on this information will allow marketers to be more competitive while improving the customer experience.

Today, more than 2,500 customers worldwide, including 21 of the top 27 retailers are moving toward Smarter Commerce.  IBM Smarter Commerce initiative delivers software and services that help companies, such as TalkTalk, Blue Chip Holiday and Roca Group, transform their business processes to meet the unique demands of each individual customer in today's digital marketplace. 

With the mobile devices expected to exceed desktop internet usage by 2014, IBM is introducing new software that gives businesses the ability to capture a customer's device type and analyze how they are responding to campaigns on each.  For example, a marketer may learn that a customer ignores messages on their smartphone but clicks through on campaigns when using their tablet. With this insight, marketers can develop, market and execute personalized digital campaigns that cater to a specific customer's mobile and tablet experience.

The importance of personalizing the customer experience across channels was recently addressed by Kiddicare, the largest online nursery and baby supplier in the UK. Kiddicare was looking to deliver more relevant, interactive dialogues across digital, social, mobile and traditional marketing channels in order better serve its loyal customers.

"IBM's Smarter Commerce initiative is playing a significant role in helping our team gain better insights into our customers so we can more effectively meet each person's needs and drive repeat purchases," said Simon Harrow, technology officer at Kiddicare. "With IBM we are now able to analyze customer buying patterns including what devices they are using and then deliver highly relevant, interactive dialogues to each. Through these insights we have been able to drive a 20 percent increase in online sales over a period of just four months."

For companies looking to capitalize on the business potential of mobile devices, IBM Global Business Services is introducing a new Mobile Strategy Accelerator to help companies adopt and build a roadmap to build stronger customer relationships through mobile devices.  Companies can also leverage IBM WebSphere Commerce tools to quickly launch a mobile storefront that can be easily customized to their company. Once their storefront is live, these businesses can deliver customers a personalized site experience across smartphones and tablets.

"We are living in the mobile and social age, where consumers are turning to friends for product advice and their smartphone and tablet to make purchases," said Craig Hayman, general manager, IBM Industry Solutions. "As this momentum continues CMOs must trade in more traditional tactics in favor of smarter approaches that extend their personalization capabilities beyond the PC. It is this ability to deliver relevant deals across multiple channels that will transform these marketing efforts from an unwanted intrusion into a valued service."

In addition to mobile, IBM also continues to address the needs of businesses looking to accelerate their social media efforts. According to IBM's CEO study announced today, 57 percent of CEOs are looking to use these platforms to connect with individuals within the next three to five years.

Through new features announced today, product marketers can balance current customer information with data from their public social media profile, such as their location and product interests. With this added insight, the team can create highly relevant promotions and deals and then post these on the recipient's Facebook wall or forward directly through Twitter.

For more information on IBM Smarter Commerce, visit:
http://www.ibm.com/smarterplanet/us/en/smarter_commerce/overview/

To join the conversation, follow hashtags #smartercommerce and #IBMSCGS

Media Contacts:
Mike Azzi
IBM Media Relations
(203) 702-3301
azzi@us.ibm.com

Doug Fraim
IBM Media Relations
(617) 501-6376
dfraim@us.ibm.com

1. The Big Picture, "60 Seconds: Things That Happen Every Sixty Seconds," http://www.ritholtz.com/blog/2011/12/60-seconds-things-that-happen-every-sixty-seconds/?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

2. BuddeComm 2012, "Digital Economy - E-Commerce and M-Commerce Insights," February 27, 2012.

SOURCE IBM

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