Category: United States

Mar

2

 

We are thrilled to announce Premium has launched store operations in hundreds of additional Walmart Wireless locations. Premium will oversee Walmart locations in 14 states across the Mid and Southwest regions. With this latest program expansion of over 50%, Premium is expanding into seven new states.

Premium and Walmart have worked together on Walmart’s Wireless program since 2017 with a Wireless team led by Premium President Dick Doyle and Tom Maria, Vice President of Strategic Accounts. Before joining Premium, Tom served as Vice President of Store Operations for RadioShack. Chad Cooper, Senior Director of Operations, and Mark Hann, Senior Director of Client Service, joined Premium in 2018 after many successful years with Verizon and Samsung.

 

 

This leadership team works closely with Walmart to define and guide future strategies. Since Premium’s first Walmart Wireless stores launched in 2018, our program footprint has almost tripled in size.

Tom Maria says, “We are coming up on the third anniversary of our exciting and rewarding partnership with Walmart, helping customers fill their wireless needs and save money. Any credit for success goes to our talented team members, who show up every day and bring their best to our company and customers.”

Wireless Sales Pros are the go-to wireless expert within the Walmart store, helping to serve and advise customers with new phone sales, activations, upgrades, and accessory bundling. Nationally, Premium employs more than 2,300 high-performing sales team members comprised of both hourly and salaried professionals.

 

 

We place a strong focus on a high standard of customer service and performance results, utilizing field leaders to provide coaching and development where it matters most – in the stores working closely with their teams.

At Premium, we also emphasize a high rate of promotion from within. Many Wireless Sales Pros have advanced to Sales Managers and Sales Managers to District Managers. We are currently rolling out a leadership development training program to streamline career advancement opportunities for our Wireless team members.

Premium President Dick Doyle says, “We are incredibly proud of the sales and leadership accomplishments of this team. We’re excited to welcome the hundreds of new Wireless team members to the Premium family and look forward to what lies ahead.”

Jan

14

 

As we continue to absorb all of the content coming out of our virtual CES experience, a few key topics stood out to us from yesterday’s lineup.

 

1) Retailers continue to focus on tech to drive overall customer satisfaction.

As a Preferred Service Provider at Walmart, of course we’re incredibly enthusiastic about all things Walmart to come out of CES. During the company’s keynote, we were excited to learn about the focus on robotic and AI technology to drive further price and time savings for customers – specifically how the ecosystem of technologies works together to drive customer experience. It’s always exciting to hear about a new piece of flashy retail tech, but true value and ROI is only realized when that tech fits into the larger strategic vision.

For 3PLs like Premium, helping our retailer and supplier partners seamlessly integrate our solutions into that overarching customer-driven puzzle is critical.

 

2) In-store tech may soon eclipse apps in the eyes of shoppers.

One segment in particular, “Retailers New Look: Shoppers Little Helpers,” shined light on this very topic. Speakers talked about robotics solutions in retail environments to support basic customer needs and shopping experience with tasks like Q&A and cleaning. This would likely only supplement the tasks that require more personal connection – something we believe still adds value for many product categories. We’re also seeing an influx of payment technologies that allow for touchless checkout. This app-less experience is influenced by the demand from customers who are shopping in-store today.

The key takeaway: The data tells us that customers no longer want to utilize apps for everything. Customers are growing more frustrated with app-based retail strategies and many want a more frictionless experience. Because in today’s world, even taking out your phone and finding or installing the app you need is a barrier to the engagement.

That’s not to say that in-store tech can’t incorporate or drive to digital experiences and content, but the transition and overall experience needs to be as seamless as possible – and, of course, it needs to add value. Brands must be careful not to overinvest in app development that customers perceive to be a seldom-used property. When the situation warrants, consumers prefer to utilize technologies like NFC, geofencing or QR codes, the resurging darling of a contactless 2020.

 

3) The new normal is here, and it’s here to stay.

It’s simply the norm – and retailers like Walmart, Best Buy and more are very aware of that.

The safety of retail workers and customers alike has always been a priority, but the shifts to align with safety protocols and guidelines continue to force us to think differently. And those shifts have influenced customer expectations – expectations that won’t just go away with the eventual dissipation of the pandemic. Customers are going to expect the supply chain to continue to keep up with their demands. That also means increased pressure on retail associates and 3PL partners to maintain on-shelf availability just as quickly – thus the industry’s surge in hiring efforts. No more fighting for toilet paper and diapers – or expect a loss of customers.

In other words, when we’re on the other side of this pandemic (or we can officially call it over – whenever that may be), retail trends that have accelerated like surges in supply chain, BOPIS and grocery delivery aren’t going to decelerate any time soon. Customers’ expectations have shifted, and they’ll stay that way for the foreseeable future.

Did you miss our highlights from day one of CES? Check them out here.

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.