Kathy Savitt

Even as consumers flock to buy products online—more than $900 billion worth last year—the e-commerce market is still largely dominated by clunky storefronts. But these four companies are finding smarter ways to create a more dynamic, social retail experience.

Kathy Savitt
Photo by JOSE mandojana

CEO and Founder / Lockerz / Seattle

Problem: Brands can get the attention of younger consumers on Facebook and Twitter, but those are social, not commerce-driven, platforms.

Solution: Lockerz rewards social expression—for example, uploading personal photos and videos—with points (Ptz) that can be used toward shopping discounts. And if another user reposts one of your photos or videos, you get rewarded as a tastemaker, with more monetizable points.

"Thirteen- to 35-year-olds are already sharing everything they're passionate about right now online. Lockerz believes in rewarding them for that social expression, so Lockerz Ptz is not just an imaginary score or a way to make members feel good—it is a monetized unit that can count toward discounts on more than 150 brands. I did 16 focus groups with college kids across the country and essentially learned that these kids have an overwhelming desire not only to be rewarded but to have those rewards matter and really be something they control. We are maniacal about knowing our members, and have a style council and a member advisory board. We believe that by staying customer focused, the site will gain a zealous following on its own."

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