Naomi K. Shapiro

Strategic Market Communications, Upstream Commerce

Following an exciting and rewarding career in marketing, PR, publishing, website management and adventure travel writing, Naomi came to the retail industry as strategic marketing communications and content manager for leading retail intelligence company, Upstream Commerce. As CEO of her own company, Creative Brilliance, she was a pr and publicity practitioner; started and maintained her own magazine, Brilliant Ideas for Publishers; wrote and published “The Brilliant Book of Promotions, Sales Tools & Special Events”; and took newspaper publishers around the world to study newspaper industries of other countries. Her most interesting invitation was to give an invited talk at the Asia-Pacific Conference in Hong Kong on, “The Future of The American Newspaper.” Most interesting personal/travel writer experiences: “Fishing With The Salties (saltwater crocodiles) at The Top Of Down Under”, trekking on a glacier; shark fishing, having six humpback whales dive under her (very) small boat; and more.

Favorite Quote #1: “Argue anything for your own advantage, and people will resist to the limit. But seem unselfishly to consider you customers’ desires, and they will naturally flock to you.” (Claude C. Hopkins, My Life In Advertising).

Favorite Quote #2: “Big ideas come from the unconscious. This is true in art, in science and in advertising. But your unconscious has to be well-informed, or your ideas will be irrelevant.” (David Ogilvy, Ogilvy On Advertising).

Other Links from Naomi K. Shapiro:

Upstream Commerce blog

  • Posted on: 06/23/2017

    What will a Nike/Amazon deal mean for the brand and other retailers?

    Nike beware! This move will obviously be bad for other retailers. But also beware that others have either left (or joined) Amazon to find their brands compromised in other ways (counterfeiting, the increased competitive information and leverage this gives to Amazon, etc.). Maybe times are changing back, but there are downsides to consider when you work with Amazon. For example, see "Why Would Retailer Like Birkenstock Walk Away From Amazon?"
  • Posted on: 06/23/2017

    What will a Nike/Amazon deal mean for the brand and other retailers?

    Maybe the fact that it's the most omnipresent "mall" that ever existed, accessible, voracious, on-the-prowl, and threatening to every retailer in existence?
  • Posted on: 06/09/2017

    Is IKEA really going to start selling on Amazon’s Marketplace?

    Most of the comments about this move are positive reasons for IKEA to be on/in third part marketplace -- and I concur. IKEA only need beware of the downsides of working with a third-party marketplace -- or it may be "Amazonized" in some way as Amazon is wont to do.
  • Posted on: 06/09/2017

    Will ‘Project Gigaton’ give Walmart a sustainable competitive edge?

    Kudos to Walmart for leading the way on environmental commitment as well as so many other ways (especially in view of the rapidly-changing, bucking-bronco, wild steer riding retail rodeo). Such actions shouldn't be compulsory for retailers, but oh so wise and prescient of Walmart.
  • Posted on: 05/24/2017

    Will Amazon’s use of data transform how retailers operate stores?

    Mohamed's last paragraph says it all -- succinctly and intelligently.
  • Posted on: 05/15/2017

    Can retailers keep up with Gen Z’s digital savviness?

    Bravo for your reaction, as always, Chris. (Unless you're being facetious, there will probably be a couple more levels between Gen Z and hardwire that we haven't yet thought of.)
  • Posted on: 05/10/2017

    Are pricing bots a boon or bane for consumers?

    Nice summary.
  • Posted on: 05/10/2017

    Are pricing bots a boon or bane for consumers?

    This whole discussion is about 3 years late. Back then, retailers, using established price competition solutions, tried to compete on price and found out that it's a losing matter. Now wiser, retailers, using established, sophisticated price competition solutions (as opposed to cottage industries), are applying price strategy initiatives to scientifically determine what would be the best price to charge for the greatest profit margin. And it works! The reason you don't hear much about it is because retailers don't want their competition to know that they are using sophisticated price intelligence tools. Either way, the consumer benefits in the end -- getting either the lowest, or the most competitive price.
  • Posted on: 05/01/2017

    Is omnichannel a retail margin crusher?

    I believe that Mohamed has the "complete" answer: Recognizing the need and importance of the consumer balanced with the bottom line, aided by investments in IT systems, people, and processes.
  • Posted on: 05/01/2017

    Should Amazon’s third-party sellers worry about Amazon?

    There are reasons that retailers like Birkenstock, Adidas, and many others have made tracks away from Amazon (including competition from cheap knockoffs that can't be controlled even by Amazon and competition from Amazon itself on many products). In the case of smaller retailers, it's so hard to leave Amazon to make their own way.Chris Petersen gave the ultimate answer, above:
    • First, he cited Amazon Marketplace's incredible turnkey solution.
    • Then, he noted that Amazon holds the key and turns that key to its own needs.
    • Then he noted that diversification is not easy or expensive.
    • Then he advised retailers to establish relationships with their customers.
    All-in-all, tremendous advice for retailers, and the cost for that savvy, succinct advice is priceless!
  • Posted on: 04/27/2017

    Is Walmart’s Store No. 8 breaking boundaries or bonds with its core customers?

    Yes, yes, and yes.Walmart is breaking boundaries with its digital acquisitions.Walmart is probably going to damage bonds with its core customer base, but can nevertheless bring along that customer base while expanding to other customer bases.Walmart is the right retailer to lead industry innovation -- it has the resources, the desire, and the wherewithal (by hiring the best in hot, proven innovative talent to develop these programs).Walmart is one of the few still standing that has the depth and dollars and resources and innovation to challenge Amazon.
  • Posted on: 04/25/2017

    Can tailored digital video messaging transform grocery end-caps?

    This concept doesn't have to get stale if it doesn't get too personal -- selling product without the creep-out factor. By keeping it generic, it can increase sales and get people into the beverage section.
  • Posted on: 04/25/2017

    Will omnichannel make the J.C. Penney and Sephora partnership more successful?

    Sounded like an "odd couple" initially, but this is a great example of two entities coming together for the mutual benefit of each. And yes, the omnichannel plays a critical role in the successful combination.
  • Posted on: 04/25/2017

    Would Albertsons and Whole Foods make a good match?

    We all seem to agree on this -- Paula said it best. It does sound like Albertsons recognizes the importance of such an entity, but haven't thought realistically through about how it could be incorporated, or maybe run separately under the Whole Foods name, just under the Albertsons ownership.
  • Posted on: 04/12/2017

    Have hacks damaged Amazon’s relationships with third-party sellers and customers?

    Being hacked may be the most egregious reason so far -- for the retailer and the customer on the third party marketplace to be very wary of what they wish for -- and, although the responsibility should lie firmly on the marketplace service and there are pros to working with them, a few other negatives of working with third party marketplaces like Amazon include costs and fees to participate; lose your identity; the third party marketplace can go to school on YOU & compete with you; keeping inventory in sync and quantities up to date, etc. You can see more pros and cons in 7 Reasons why a retailer like Birkenstock would walk away from Amazon, and 9 Reasons a retailer gave Amazon and eBay the boot.

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