Lyle Bunn (Ph.D. Hon)

Strategy Architect – Digital Place-based Media
Lyle Bunn (Ph.D. Hon.) is the longest-serving independent analyst, advisor and educator in North America’s digital signage and place-based media industry. Over the past 15 years of his 40-year career in information technologies and telecommunications, Lyle has assisted over 300 firms in their planning, execution and optimization of location-based digital media and has helped to train over 10,000 professionals.

Lyle has received 6 major industry recognitions including an Honorary Doctorate for his contributions to end user and industry education. He has been named as one of the "11 Most Influential People" in place-based media by <i>Digital Signage Today</i> and one of the "50 Industry Innovators and Influencers" by <i>Sign & Digital Graphics Magazine</i>.

He has published over 350 articles, whitepapers and guidebooks on related subjects and has served as editor and principal writer of Dynamic Media supplements in <i>USA Today</i>, <i>The Wall Street Journal</i> and <i>The National Post</i>. He serves on the advisory boards of the industry’s primary events and on the judging panel of several digital signage awards programs.

Learn more at:
Lyle's website: <a href=""></a>
Lyle's blog: <a href=""></a>
  • Posted on: 02/24/2017

    Is McDonald’s backpedaling on fast casual with a low-price strategy?

    Great point Adrian. The TimeTrade State of Retail 2017 study report noted that $150 billion in revenue was lost in 2016 because retailers have failed to provide better customer experiences. According to the study findings, consumers will pay 5 percent more, and Millennials a full 20 percent more for a better experience. Experience is king. See the stats here.
  • Posted on: 02/24/2017

    Is Amazon’s Alexa a threat to rival retailers?

    As voice is the new access point to commerce, is there really any question of if retailers and brands will have to engage with consumers on that basis? But the booms in websites and social media in the past offer an important lesson about when to engage in voice interactivity. Blowing billions on something new and shiny that providers call a "must have" can take time, money and attention from areas that deliver higher ROI. Timing is everything.
  • Posted on: 02/24/2017

    Is McDonald’s backpedaling on fast casual with a low-price strategy?

    Flexibility, resilience and even nimble-ness to take a brand into trials and new territories is the new basis of consumer-facing success in this age of the empowered consumer. That is progressive, and back-tracking can mean reinforcing turf previously won. Through all this, connection to the consumer is key, with communications approaches that get offers across and engage customers to generate transactions and deepen brand connection.
  • Posted on: 02/23/2017

    Will a new TJX concept put more hurt on department stores?

    The twist on omnichannel that offers more physical browse/buy options rather than just widening existing customer paths to purchase recognizes the importance of the shopping experience as outing, browsing and discovery. Bravo for the real retailer blood that courses through your TJX veins!
  • Posted on: 02/23/2017

    Will dropping double coupons and senior discounts cost Kroger customers?

    The empowered consumer (being one myself) will begrudge a reward for loyalty being withdrawn. The smart marketers at Kroger have surely projected the cost of reduced loyalty as their location becomes but an option as patrons vote with their feet and wallet. Customers have longer memories than future-focused, office-bound marketers might realize. As the discount "campaign" (what else can Kroger now call it?) that wooed patrons is over, some alternative points of value must also be offered or existing ones communicated. I am the biggest fan of providing better in-store experience over margin reduction programs. Experience has high value for traffic and conversion.
  • Posted on: 02/22/2017

    Can Walmart grow its online business profitably?

    Indeed, Chris. Omnichannel is the operating expression of the "whole" and the dot-com focus of the online/mobile element has been playing into the promotional hand of online-only retail for too long. People want the experience of the physical store and those of online and mobile. The race is for the elements of interaction between brand, retailer and consumer to get to the point where the silos and lack of ubiquity are too apparent.
  • Posted on: 02/22/2017

    What tech tools do independent grocers need to compete with e-tailers?

    As long as the independent grocer is but one shopping option, the greater appeal of each of fresh offering, value and service, which are its strengths, must be reinforced and amplified. Technologies that can do this while adding to the shopping experience primarily include dynamic signage and push to mobile. Deli in particular has benefited greatly from digital signage investment, and grocery has the traffic volume to justify more media engagement. Competing using technologies beyond current operating applications is a grocery market transition that many look forward to.
  • Posted on: 02/17/2017

    Will Costco, Kohl’s, Target, et al give Google Home an edge over Amazon’s Echo?

    Voice is as natural a data access or activation interface as visuals are the preferred way of ingesting lots of bits that relate to each other. The need in voice interface is that requests be fulfilled efficiently. If the paths to outcome can be shortened with "pre-load," all the better. But machine learning offers a stronger long-term proposition for personalized service. Google's approach may reduce the pain of initializing service value, but catch-up in the race to improved value is quickly received with the combination of natural language interface and machine learning.
  • Posted on: 02/15/2017

    Zappos takes to the road to connect with consumers

    Physical retailers have got to take lessons from Zappos. The medium is the message, as Zappos says "we want to make your life easier, better and even more interesting -- let us do things together that benefit us all." I have always been intrigued that physical retailers take so little advantage of their space and customer interests to run profile events, education and social gatherings. Pet, crafts, building supply and some fashion retail and malls get this, and it is surely the extension of those special shopping days that increase store sales.
  • Posted on: 02/15/2017

    Will having the same buyers for online and stores work for Walmart?

    Because a unified approach to supply chain delivers economies, it is easy to imagine Walmart and other retailers insisting that suppliers provide better content, such as marketing materials. Information-enabled shopping is the foundation of value analysis by consumers and is the next big stride forward in retail's success. Where omnichannel makes transactions possible, product information in the consumer experience will make them successful.
  • Posted on: 02/15/2017

    Is Amazon the most innovative company in retailing?

    Amazon has changed browsing and buying and in doing so has pulled the entire retail sector forward with it. In leveraging the internet for supply chain efficiencies and added customer-facing interfaces, algorithms and customer engagement it sets a bar for digital-enabled experiences. The key message from Amazon is that the 3Ps of product, price and promotion as the pillars of physical retail have been changed to the new 3Ps of place, processes and people. And Amazon's second message is, "compete with technologies."
  • Posted on: 02/14/2017

    Will women buy lingerie from Amazon?

    Fit is the key to this and some other product categories, with price and convenience being fast followers. When consumers know what they want it is basically a commodity purchase, but physical retail has a big role to play whenever the prospect of returns is high and discovery is an element of shopping.
  • Posted on: 02/14/2017

    Is third-party content more effective in generating online sales?

    I am a big skeptic about the merit of consumer reviews for brand-building, and suggest that the supply chain has been negligent in making facts and information available that can fuel trust. Evidence-based reviews offer value in describing product performance and customer satisfaction, but these are too often submersed in a sea of untrustworthy commentary. The small percentage of reviews that are legitimate and insightful are valuable but generally are a tail incapable of wagging the dog of broad consumer opinion. Sentiment analysis which tries to draw anything useful should be seen as an input to product development and business approaches rather than a way of salvaging value from social media investment. Brands must get their hand back on the handle end of the brand-expression whip.
  • Posted on: 02/13/2017

    Should L.L.Bean ditch its legendary return policy?

    Well said, Peter. Why do we think that changes in some areas are acceptable (i.e. consumer behaviors) and not others (i.e. return policy)? Usually things have to change to get better and this must certainly be true when "returns" is the biggest supplier and retailers expose their bottom line in fear of revenue and loyalty. In some categories (fashion/footwear) more rigor on the return policy is reasonable. If consumers love a brand, they will respect it. Some explanation on policy goes a long way.
  • Posted on: 02/13/2017

    What goes into productive sales calls at retail?

    Answering the "what's in it for us" question during the sales call should include support for store traffic and conversion. Putting product on the shelf is secondary to consumers pulling it off, so the supplier discussion should become a partner discussion.

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