2 Irrefutable and Significant Trends That Are Re-Defining Digital Commerce

By: Sameer Patel | February 23, 2017 | Artificial Intelligence, Kahuna


Brand marketers sit right at the intersection of two of the most irrefutable and significant trends that are re-defining and disrupting digital commerce and customer engagement in profound ways.

Irrefutable and significant trend #1

The expectations of today’s consumers about how a brand engages with them are wildly different compared to what they expected as recently as 3 years ago. For example, at no point in the process of calling for an Uber to selecting a ride to reaching your destination and paying your credit card bill do you or I ever feel like we are being marketed or sold to. Yet, you get out of the car thinking you have “won.” Uber is making billions as they delight you. The same holds true for when you are “up sold” by Amazon or Netflix’s eerily accurate recommendations based on your purchase and browsing behavior.

In exchange for leaving an increasing amount of digital breadcrumbs that highlight their preferences, consumers now demand that you truly understand them during the purchase journey. Not their segment. Not their cohort. Them, as individuals. And for that, it’s clear that they are willing to reward you handsomely.

Irrefutable and significant trend #2

On that last point about treating every consumer as an individual, we’ve been talking about the holy grail of 1:1 personalization for decades now. But technology just wasn’t up to snuff to provide a truly personalized experience—until now. With advancements in machine learning and artificial intelligence, it is finally possible to understand a consumer’s preferences within seconds of him taking an action or displaying a certain behavior, and subsequently engaging with him during the purchase cycle in wildly more accurate and meaningful ways—much like Uber does.

Now every consumer wants to be respectfully treated as an audience of one, where you engage with her with the right content, at the right time, and on the right channel and device.

This isn’t a forward looking statement. Modern marketers and CMOs are now distinguishing themselves in respective noisy, margin-sensitive businesses by exploiting new approaches to consumer experience at the intersection of these two trends, to drive sustainable competitive advantage.

eTail West panel – March 1, 2017

On March 1st, I’m privileged to join a group of experienced leaders in retail and commerce on a panel at eTail West in Palm Desert, CA to discuss how content needs to go from rapid fire parallel assault on all channels, to a more surgical cross-channel approach.

On the panel, we will discuss critical topics: how to execute a truly cross-channel content and commerce strategy, how we move from an email-centric technology to one that leverages all channels and puts the consumer in the center of the experience design. And finally, how to build frictionless commerce models using modern marketing technology.

The fantastic panel members include:

  • Isamar Batista, Director CRM, ShoeDazzle
  • Daniel Gaugler, CMO, PrintingForLess.com
  • Lauren Beck, Director, Category Management, HSN
  • Gregory Rice, Marketing Manager, Newegg
  • And myself, Sameer Patel, CEO, Kahuna

The panel is moderated by Tom Wilde, Chief Product Officer, CXSENSE.


I look forward to seeing you there.


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Author: Sameer Patel

Sameer Patel joined Kahuna in August 2016 as CEO. Prior to Kahuna, Sameer was GM/SVP at SAP/SuccessFactors where he led the team responsible for making SAP a leading provider of customer and employee collaboration solutions, serving over 35 million subscribers. Prior to SAP, Sameer worked consulting and systems integrator business. He has keynoted over 50 industry and venture capital/private equity events and has been quoted in publications like The New York Times, CNBC, The Wall Street Journal, TechCrunch, and HBR. Sameer received his Bachelor’s in Finance and Economics from Babson College and his Master’s in MIS from Boston University. He enjoys writing about leadership and high-performing enterprises on his blog, Pretzel Logic.

Fun fact:

Sameer has worked in seven countries, was a nationally-ranked squash player, and has swum 3 open water races. His current passion is subjecting his family to his (mis)adventures in the culinary arts.



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