Category: Analyze

Jan

19

 

2020 was a record year for Premium, despite its significant challenges. We celebrated 35 years since our founding and six years since we expanded into Canada. As we reflect, we’re in awe of the continued accomplishments amongst incredible obstacles. 

 

COVID-19 Response 

The spotlight on the retail services Premium executes every day became more critical than ever after COVID-19 hit. As the pandemic spread in March and April, Premium answered retail’s changing demands. 

To ensure our Premium Heroes remained safe and healthy while working on the frontlines, we sourced and received protective supplies while implementing new health and safety protocols and training. In April, our National Logistics & Distribution Center (NLDC) safely deployed supply kits of face coverings and hand sanitizer to 4,300 field employees less than 24 hours after receiving the materials. 

 

Client Partnerships 

Premium became Rite Aid’s exclusive merchandising services provider in January 2020.  And, in a testament to our drug channel team, Walgreens, Rite Aid, and CVS trusted us with additional projects and surge coverage as stores were hit harder than ever. 

We expanded grocery and mass coverage and product ordering for Lindt & Sprüngli, and added Foster Grant to our client roster. Expansive resets and revisions in retailers such as Ulta have enabled Premium to develop a specialized Transformation Team, increasing efficiency for clients. 

Additionally, Premium’s co-owners Brian and Kevin Travers announced a $1MM commitment to enriching teens’ lives in disinvested communities through technology in partnership with Best Buy. We will continue to work with Best Buy to open five additional Teen Tech Centers around the United States in 2021 and 2022.  

 

Digital Innovation 

With social distancing, stay-at-home orders and curbside pickup taking prominence, we accelerated the development of our digital brand advocacy solutions to assist our clients in adhering to the new world.  

In July, we introduced Premium On Demand, which facilitates video interactions between shoppers and product experts from their favorite brands. This fall, we supported Best Buy in developing the Health, Fitness & Wearables category via virtual consultations with shoppers and the rollout of an interactive game series to engage stores and train associates called BrandBuzz 

Premium On Demand

 

Retail Intelligence 

Government influence, consumer attitudes and behaviors, retailer protocols, and local COVID-19 case rates have greatly influenced the store environment this year. Our analytics team provided weekly updates and insights to our clients and leadership team, ensuring field actions and behaviors remained responsive, impactful and geographically appropriate.  

We developed nearly 100 new business intelligence dashboards and rolled out the Premium BI mobile app, enabling clients and field teams to interact with real-time KPI performance visualizations and delivering an in-depth view into new business opportunities.  

Smartcom, Premium’s predictive analytics engine built exclusively for Walmart suppliers, helped clients overcome out of stocks in a tumultuous year for product inventory. 

Our Operations Support Center (OSC) managed nearly 50,000 omnichannel interactions via phone, email, and text. Additionally, our specialists ensured quality by completing 6.6 million photo reviews. Greenlight, our real-time photo validation solution, prevented over 6,000 revisits by providing reps with near-instant corrective action or approval.

 

Employee Recognition & Development 

In our 2019 Town Hall, we asked our team what Premium could improve upon in 2020. Their answer was career development and performance incentives. 

We responded by launching Premium Proud, a new employee recognition program designed to recognize and reward top-performing field team members. In our continuing commitment to help our employees #GrowWithPremium, 18% of our field team members received promotions this year.  

Premium’s training team also developed the University of Premium (UP) this year for self-guided career and personal development. UP will contain several development paths ranging from Field to Executive-level leadership. All employees will be eligible to apply in 2021. 

Read More: 2020 Employee Awards  

We’re proud of the continued focus on culture and employee engagement at Premium. This year, we were certified as a Great Place to Work in Canada and awarded St. Louis’ Top Workplaces for the third year in a row. 

We’re thankful for our extended Premium family – team members, clients, and partners. As an organization, we deemed Q4 2020 as “Mission: Possible,” and your collaboration has undoubtedly contributed to the many missions completed in 2020. Here’s to a fantastic 2021! 

                 

Jan

13

 

Premium’s CE team is spending the week taking in this year’s virtual CES. But just because we traded our suits for slippers doesn’t mean we didn’t take notes! 

What we’re taking away from day one: 

 

1. Navigate omnichannel with nimbleness.  

The year 2020 was a learning experience, with digital adoption rates accelerating years beyond expectations. Best Buy CEO Corie Barry focused on the importance of being agile and iterative as we all embrace “the new normal.”  

We put the customer in control. Whether the customer wanted it on their couch, whether they wanted it curbside, whether they wanted it at the counter – that needs to not matter to us,” she said during her keynote interview. “We need to agnostically meet that customer wherever they are.” 

In partnership with our clients, Premium plans to continue the momentum, adapting to retail’s rapidly changing needs through flexible planning. Brick and mortar stores will remain at the epicenter with the ability to serve customers at the front door with curbside pickup, cash register with contactless payment and back door ship from store. 

 

2. Evolve the customer experience throughout every consumer channel.

Consistency, personalization and engaging new experiences are brand and retailer mantras more than ever as they seek to become trusted advisors for consumers. Premium’s brand advocacy solutions provide an army of advocates and technologies to help deliver memorable experiences that convert to sales. 

Premium can help you create a consistent, powerful customer experience everywhere you sell. Our online brand championsvirtual sales assist technology, and gamification strategies help bring your brand to life, bell to bell.  

As the omnichannel path to purchase matures, brand advocates and retail experts need to have clearly defined roles in serving online communities’ needs beyond basic product descriptions and boilerplate interactions.  

 

3. Get smart with actionable data.

Online shopping has given us more data on consumer behavior than ever. But many in retail have no idea how to use it. Premium invests in AI and cloud solutions to collect and analyze data, giving you a leg up in building relationships and loyalty with your customers and smartly investing toward gaps in the business.

Premium is ready to move your retail strategy forward; everywhere you need us. 

Want more key takeaways from CES? Click here.

 

Jan

12

SAINT LOUIS, MO – Premium Retail Services (Premium), the North American company known for creating informed and inspired shopping experiences for leading brands and retailers has hired Ed Hoehn as Vice President of Strategy & Solutions Architecture. Ed will strengthen Premium’s retail engagement capabilities and integrated technology portfolio in this newly created role.

Ed joins Premium with 20 years of retail marketing and technology experience. In his most recent role, Ed was the Chief Customer Officer of a visual communications company where he led sales, marketing and technology. Before that, he founded and led a venture-backed FinTech company after spending the first 15 years of his career in business development and client service for retail marketing agencies including BDS Marketing, Mosaic Sales Solutions and Crossmark.

“As we continue to grow and solve increasingly complex challenges for our customers, it is important for Premium to continue to invest in adding expertise to our team,” said Kevin Travers, CEO of Premium. “We are excited about the experience Ed brings to the company, having created omnichannel solutions across a broad range of industry verticals.”

Data, engagement technology, and supply chain are the three elements at the center of every challenge facing consumer brands and retailers today. Having the data, tools and knowledge to make the right decisions to drive consumer behavior is more challenging than ever. From personalizing the shopping experience in-store and online to helping integrate curbside or home delivery, Premium is focused on helping partners create the optimal customer experience.

Ed shared his perspective, saying, “Many brands and retailers struggle to solve these issues in today’s accelerating retail environment. Premium employs proven, measured strategies and has amassed incredible talent, built enterprise technologies, and charted best practices while excelling in their legacy of people-based services. Driving it all is the desire to create tailormade solutions that drive sales for their clients.”

View the official release here.