Anne Howe

Principal, Anne Howe Associates
Anne Howe has recently returned to independent consulting work through Anne Howe Associates, which she formed in 2010. Her focus will be on applying the principles of human influence in the retail and shopper marketplace.

Howe has many years of marketing and management experience ranging across diverse business sectors, including Retail, CPG, Home, Apparel, Appliances and service industries across north America. She has been a bold, industry-involved leader in retail and shopper marketing, serving on groups, panels and commissions to further the discipline with a keen eye on enhancing the shopper experience. She is a member of the Path to Purchase Institute and has been a co-chair of its annual Expo event.

Anne's overall business experience includes two years of consulting for and two subsequent  years as SVP for Acosta Mosaic Group, the marketing services division of Acosta Sales & Marketing, and 18 years as an executive at The MARS Agency. She also served as Regional VP of Sales for Hanes Hosiery, directed a retail-focused public relations firm and spent time in sales/marketing management with Hilton Hotels Corporation.
Among her many career highlights:

Introduction of storied brands such as Wonderbra, Barely There Intimates, Champion Underwear, Levi Signature, Whirlpool Duet and Clorox Green Works into the US retail marketplace.

See Anne's blog: <a href=""></a>
  • Posted on: 04/20/2017

    Has CVS crafted a promising new drugstore shopping journey?

    I like the direction of moving to self-care versus sick-care. And there is nothing wrong with more information that gets the shopper to the "treasure" faster and with less hassle. The only thing is that each and every customer is on a different journey, so I hope CVS has its listening ears tuned up to help find what shoppers want, and perhaps enhance the program's personalization.
  • Posted on: 04/19/2017

    Will help PetSmart gobble up the online pet market?

    The key here is that PetSmart really understands how meaningful it is that Mr. Chewy has a "high-touch" model with its shoppers. Because pets are kids too! There is a big opportunity here!
  • Posted on: 04/14/2017

    What’s keeping shoppers away from the frozen aisle?

    The long and hard-to-understand ingredient list keeps me out of the frozen aisle in general. For health-focused label readers, it's just too time-consuming to find what works. Better merchandising by shopper criteria is a solution that, combined with truthful and educating signage, would be a great start. But, that said, it would still leave a lot of CPG products out in the cold!
  • Posted on: 04/13/2017

    Are retail CEOs ready to ‘disagree and commit’ like Jeff Bezos?

    I agree that this practice can be very tricky but, hey, the CEO makes the big bucks and has the power to be innovative and be nimble or lag behind. Most take the low-risk behavior and that's why guys like Bezos can stay ahead. Retail as a sector needs fewer laggards and more risk takers, especially in an era of rapid change.
  • Posted on: 04/13/2017

    Is UPS’s Saturday announcement a sign of deliveries to come?

    Give the shopper what she wants, the way she wants and when she wants. Thanks UPS. We've been waiting for you.
  • Posted on: 03/30/2017

    Could an Amazon augmented reality store shake up appliance and furniture shopping?

    I'm certain that Amazon is watching Lowe's progress with keen interest. It makes sense for shoppers and will help them as they move into more urban locations. I applaud Amazon for its forward thinking but it seems to me that this type of retail showroom/store would be challenged to attract shoppers who are in the market to buy appliances over retailers like Lowe's, Home Depot and even J.C. Penney.Despite aggressive expansion and great-looking stores, even hhgregg is having a hard time competing in the appliance arena.
  • Posted on: 03/29/2017

    Does Amazon need bricks to make its online grocery business click?

    Looking at data from a March 2017 monthly consumer survey (source: Prosper Insights & Analytics via MacrosSavvy Resource Network) -- 91.8 percent of shoppers shopped for groceries in a physical store in the last 30 days versus 12.4 percent online.Amazon has to figure out grocery based on what shoppers define as an unmet need. I wonder if they understand their shoppers or are just trying to win a game. This data would suggest that a brick-and-mortar presence might be essential, but the question is really about understanding why dedicated online shoppers prefer to shop in the physical retail environment.
  • Posted on: 03/24/2017

    Can compete on experience over price?

    This concept is spot on. Living 50 minutes from the nearest Nordstrom these days, the idea of having browsing time at home translate to a fitting room of items waiting for me at the store is fantastic. This idea has me ready to jump in the car and drive! Oh, and I'm guessing the USP of fashion authority, service and experience they are known for is going to pay off in the register after my visit. Sign this shopper up!
  • Posted on: 03/24/2017

    Will smaller stores and omnichannel pay off for Kohl’s?

    I'm going to throw out a crazy idea. What if Kohl's could collaborate with some key vendors and make a limited branded line of apparel basics for distribution in Dollar General/Family Dollar? Talk about access to customers with a need for basics, a bias toward promotions and high reliance on mobile!
  • Posted on: 03/23/2017

    Is social media influence the new key to building brand loyalty?

    Well, this post sounds more like an ad for Inmar/CB services, but the fact remains that influencer marketing is real and important to every brand. I don't think of influencer marketing as different from traditional marketing. "Traditional" as a descriptor of marketing is outdated. Customer-centricity and shopper-centricity is what every marketing touchpoint should be focused on. The intent can be to deliver brand promise, brand experience or brand offer/USP, as long as it is focused on delivering on an expectation, want, need or even unmet need. That's where the rubber meets the road -- building relationship and trust.Good for Inmar for assembling the resources to make well-guided decisions that help clients deliver influence that creates behavior change.
  • Posted on: 03/22/2017

    What do know-it-all shoppers want?

    Shoppers have had to get smarter because of the failure retailers must own -- not enough investment in personal service. So many have mistakenly over-invested in digital, which is not a panacea in a world where human influence has always mattered, and still matters greatly, in the purchase cycle.Retailers that plan to invest in associate training would do well to model the training toward filling gaps that their core shoppers identify. Listen first, then train.
  • Posted on: 03/21/2017

    Why is the U.S. so bad at airport retailing?

    When you fly weekly, airport time is catch up on work time, not shopping time! Food options for on-the-go healthy eating are mainly non-existent and most apparel/luggage/knick-knack stores have staff that seemingly don't care to ask if they can help you. My advice for retailers in U.S. airports is to train staff to say "how can I help you, how much time do you have to shop?" -- allowing the customer to be in control of the experience from the get-go.
  • Posted on: 03/14/2017

    Are Old Navy’s ads more effective sans celebrities?

    I am all for the play-on-words product ad concepts, but the 40 percent off part of the spots defy logic to me. Why not introduce the products and ads at full price? (which is a good value anyway). They can always ad a sale tag later if the collections don't sell.
  • Posted on: 03/09/2017

    Are free returns a good way to drive online sales?

    For buying things that need to fit well, Zappos is the best for the very reason that shoppers can order two and send back the one that's not the best fit. It's a HUGE convenience and also broadcasts caring and love to the shopper. This is a company that truly lives and embodies its values. That in itself mitigates downside risks.
  • Posted on: 03/07/2017

    Will using Uber for home deliveries work for Kroger?

    Yikes! With Uber's dark culture cloud looming, Kroger might want to look for a supplier that can white-label delivery services under the Kroger brand umbrella. Vetting and proper training of the humans to "rep the brand" correctly is the key to success here.

Contact Anne