PROFILE

Dan Frechtling

SVP Product and Marketing, CMO, G2 Web Services

Dan oversees product and marketing for G2 Web Services, a payments technology and service provider operating in the Americas, Europe, Middle East, and Asia.

Previously, Dan ran global product management for hibu, a leading provider of digital services connecting local consumers and merchants in the US, UK, Spain and Latin America. Prior to that, he was Vice President Marketing and Vice President Client Solutions for DS-IQ, where he re-launched digital couponing products for SUPERVALU and developed and executed marketing strategies for digital media at Walmart.

Earlier, he was general manager of DVD games and youth electronics as Director of Worldwide Marketing for Mattel. At Stamps.com he helped launch the first server-based web postage technology.  At McKinsey & Company he led engagements for consumer and technology clients.

Dan earned his MBA with distinction from Harvard Business School and his BS in Journalism/Economics from Northwestern University. He speaks Mandarin Chinese.

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  • Posted on: 10/11/2017

    What does all the noise around Amazon’s ‘Seller Flex’ program mean?

    Seller Flex is a step toward Amazon vertically integrating into delivery. But small steps are easy. Similar to Amazon Fresh, this is much simpler to do in contained areas before expanding regionally, nationally and globally. The latter would take years, especially with Amazon's commitment to customer experience and low tolerance for error.But even if Amazon doesn't realize global ambitions in delivery, the potential for it to do so provides stronger negotiating leverage with UPS and FedEx. It then has the choice of passing on shipping savings to consumers, increasing Prime profit margins or reinvesting the savings into building out its own delivery system.
  • Posted on: 09/22/2017

    Hilton Honors members go shopping with points on Amazon

    The sentiment on this program is uniformly negative, and I agree. It's not a good deal for Hilton Honors members, who typically earn a value of 5 cents to 6 cents per point as compared to 2 cents in the Amazon trade. And there are better ways to earn rewards to use at Amazon.com, such as the Chase Amazon Prime card.Hilton has a value problem. Its points are less valuable than Marriott, Starwood, Wyndham, Hyatt, Accor and IHG, according to RealWorldMachine.com. Devaluing them further while adding more partners doesn't solve the problem. For all the Hilton Honors members, such as myself, I hope they find a better formula.
  • Posted on: 09/05/2017

    Will AI mimicry ruin online user-generated reviews?

    The security teams at UGC-reliant sites indeed need to address this problem. Algorithms can rank AI likelihood like SPAM likelihood and push questionable reviews down the list. The Chicago research already cited length, character distribution and typos as red flags.It takes AI to fight AI, but just like the fire-fighting analogy that's not enough. There are many ways to assess authenticity, such as requiring photos and rewarding video, frequent contributors and verified purchases with a higher ranking.This is the beginning. When AI becomes mature enough to spout RetailWire discussion comments, then I will be most impressed!
  • Posted on: 08/17/2017

    Should drones be used for data collection in addition to deliveries?

    This may be more of a B2B play than B2C.Aerial residential information can be used for lead generation for construction, remodeling, landscaping, and even insurance claims. Such geographic data is fragmented right now, so Amazon's ability to fill in the gaps and provide up to the minute information provides an advantage when paired with archives from existing aerial imagery companies.This industry already exists. Amazon is not necessarily creating a new invasive service. But as usual, Amazon can choose to complement it or disrupt it.
  • Posted on: 08/05/2017

    Will Amazon’s new return policy help or hurt its marketplace sellers?

    I agree with Kevin's point that the those who take advantage of the rules are outnumbered by those who follow the spirit of the rules.However, the "fraudulent few" do exist. We see them in brick and mortar returns, false complaints, credit card chargebacks, even frivolous lawsuits. They hold multiple accounts and can be spotted load balancing offensive activities.Amazon has the ability to identify those abusing the system and (1) warn them, and (2) share a watchlist with third party sellers of those who defraud Amazon or its sellers. That reduces the friction of buying, because honest marketplace shoppers aren't committing to irreversible decisions. It also can reduce friction out of selling by limiting sellers' long tail losses.
  • Posted on: 07/21/2017

    Will customers use an Amazon app to chat?

    Chatting with friends gets shoppers to spend more time on Amazon digital properties, but that's not the moneymaker. Showing brands high usage and engagement levels from shoppers opens up new services Amazon can offer sellers. Messenger, WeChat and WhatsApp have shown how to woo businesses. Amazon can attract brands large and small with capabilities like automated customer support.
  • Posted on: 07/10/2017

    Should Walmart restrict carriers from working with Amazon?

    Walmart put the trucking issue to bed with a denial and an admission that doing so would be illegal. They would lose badly in attempting such a scheme.The more interesting issue is AWS. Data sensitivity is a bonafide concern, and Walmart's move can encourage other retailers to follow suit with their technology vendors.I hope Microsoft Azure is listening, as they can grab business with value-added solutions for retailers, such as customer history machine learning for better service and recommendations, better kiosk and tablet support for associates, and less time maintaining servers than AWS requires.
  • Posted on: 06/29/2017

    Should store associates be allowed to use their personal devices?

    There is a difference between working and playing with a device. If an associate is using a device to help a shopper, that's obviously beneficial and far different from texting alone during work hours.At Home Depot last weekend, an associate pulled out her personal iPhone, cracked screen and all, and one-handedly helped me find item I needed online. Without the device, I would have driven down the street to Lowe's.Would I have bought from Home Depot without her mobile help? No. The device extended her service skills. For all I know she may have cracked the screen while juggling help for the last customer.A store-issued device may be preferable for security and to avoid entertainment distractions. But I agree with Meaghan that a personal device works wonders in the right hands.
  • Posted on: 06/21/2017

    How did mobile become the ‘glue’ in the Sephora shopping experience?

    Sephora's "try before you buy" digital ethos includes in-store, online, and mobile. In-store devices like Color IQ scanners recommend "scientifically precise lip, foundation and concealer matches." Online it learned from YouTubers and hosts a Beauty Workshop of curated videos. The Digital Makeover Guide in the app is another tactic in the digital strategy.It's ironic that Sephora has found a way to deliver a higher touch experience, without associates, simply by leaving people alone to play. Other categories that thrive on how-to imagery -- fashion, furniture, home renovation, gardening, cooking, and the like -- can apply mobile and digital lessons from Sephora.
  • Posted on: 06/16/2017

    What happens now that Amazon is acquiring Whole Foods?

    This could go in many different directions over time. At first Whole Foods will remain standalone. But Amazon is certainly able to bring a technology, data and Prime focus.On the technology front, that means more e-commerce and omnichannel to help Whole Foods expand its geographic reach without physical capital investment. Expect more Whole Foods orders online. Some day drones from roofs? Maybe, when now you have 450 rooftops.With data, a blending of customer insight, especially around the upscale buyer, will help Whole Foods understand more habits in more categories about its own customers. This can promote both SKU expansion and rationalization.With Prime, the model is not just about delivery but the pricing package itself. "Subscribing to your grocer" will become a new option to augment other Prime benefits.
  • Posted on: 06/09/2017

    Is it time for stores to ditch the free Wi-Fi?

    Removing Wi-Fi for shoppers seems to be a losing proposition. In addition to the loss of customer emails that the article mentions, stores lose the opportunity for anonymous data from shoppers that help measure traffic and time in store. There’s also lost marketing effectiveness: Jo-Ann Fabric Facebook ads targeted to Wi-Fi users yield six times the number of store visits.The business case for in-store Wi-Fi is valid whether shoppers use it or not. Associates use Wi-Fi to look up inventory and product information—even shopper profiles—while helping shoppers on the floor. Devices such as kiosks, shelf screens and mobile point-of-sale (mPOS) use it.The benefits easily justify the low investment.
  • Posted on: 05/23/2017

    Can offline word-of-mouth be used to drive business results?

    Offline word of mouth is continuous, while online is discontinuous. In other words, silence during a face-to-face or phone conversation is awkward, while pausing before responding while texting or chatting is natural. As a result, offline word of mouth is spontaneous and even off-topic, while online WOM is premeditated and biased toward socially acceptable topics.The best way to get anyone talking is to stay top of mind. The best way to stay top of mind is to target your most loyal users, who already are thinking about you. Give them deals and incentives to recommend you to their friends. Give them seasonally-relevant tips to help them solve their problems and help their friends and family as well. This is far better than spending media to drive "stories" to get uninterested non-users to talk about you.
  • Posted on: 05/17/2017

    Did Starbucks turn its POS outage into a win?

    “If you want to be a millionaire, start with a billion dollars and launch a new airline,” says Richard Branson, who ultimately sold Virgin America to Alaska Airlines. As Alaska is another Seattle company like Starbucks, now’s the time if they can part with the money!
  • Posted on: 05/15/2017

    Will mobile wallets replace plastic loyalty cards?

    Are loyalty programs better served by mobile platforms than a plastic cards? The answer is yes if consumers track points and use coupons, such as in the case of high-frequency trips like getting coffee. But the answer is maybe in the case of low-frequency trips such as getting haircuts, where the utility is no greater than a punch card and the hassle of installing and fumbling for an app looms larger.But the question was about digital wallets, which are more than loyalty card holders. Digital wallets are payment mechanisms, like Paypal, Apple Pay and Masterpass. Consumers are highly unlikely to pay with merchant-specific digital wallets just to earn points, except for rare exceptions like Starbucks. This places the leverage in the hands of the digital wallet providers, who would be well-positioned to offer federated loyalty programs like Plenti.
  • Posted on: 04/24/2017

    Should Bloomingdale’s sales associates receive commissions for online sales?

    Some method of giving associates credit for online sales is in order. But the general approach of spreading commissions from online sales to store staff based on shopper geography creates a free rider problem that doesn’t compensate individual effort. A more personal model of attribution is needed.For online orders shipped home, attribution is technically simple but financially knotty. Here are three ways, by degree of difficulty:
    1. Associates facilitate orders of out-of-stock or non-inventoried items with tablets before the shopper leaves the store;
    2. Associates get credit for home orders via a code or a unique landing page for their clients and a CRM model that tags shoppers when they are online. Getting shoppers to use the code, though, usually requires a discount or access to curated items;
    3. Associates are assumed credit when a matching system detects online orders from shoppers match a database of previous in-store transactions.
    For BOPIS, tracking time spent with in-store pickups and compensating them seems only fair. Furthermore, it creates a relationship-building opportunity that can channel more online sales like the above.All of the above add cost. There’s associate commissions, shopper discounts and IT system costs. This triple margin hit can undercut what makes online orders so economically attractive to brick-and-mortar stores in the first place.

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