Allison McGuire

Vice President of Marketing, Paper Mart
Allison has an accomplished history of building online marketing and ecommerce programs. She’s been with Paper Mart since 2015 where they have launched a variety of new marketing channels taking the 100 year old business to the next level. Under her leadership the company has gained national exposure on the Today Show, NBC's Making It, World’s Greatest TV, and the Wall Street Journal. Paper Mart was named the #1 Most Trusted Site to Shop 2020 by Brightpearl. Prior to joining Paper Mart, Allison held leadership positions at Harbor Freight Tools, Overnight Prints, Experian CheetahMail, and Office Depot.
  • Posted on: 01/21/2022

    Amazon says first clothing store will be a fashion and technological revelation

    I must admit, I'm not usually one to sing praises about Amazon, but this feels like a winning shopping experience. I think the cross-selling functionality is brilliant. You don't always see everything in a store and with their tailored recommendations it's like a personal shopper. How fast they can get the items in the dressing room when you're done browsing will be important. You don't want to stand around for 5-10 minutes waiting to try on your clothes.
  • Posted on: 12/30/2021

    The winner of the 2021 RetailWire Christmas Commercial Challenge is …

    My vote goes to Etsy. Heartwarming, but also makes sense for the brand. I understand the marketing message, while also enjoying a sentimental story.
  • Posted on: 12/30/2021

    How to escape your comfort zone

    During 2020, it felt necessary to connect with my team on a more personal level. We were all going through a lot and needed each other's support. I've always been wary of opening up at work, I never wanted to seem unprofessional. But I must say it has paid off in ways I never expected. The team is closer and we're having a lot more fun together. Suggesting more team events and activities has been welcomed with open arms and everyone has become closer. Stretching outside your comfort zone while being true to yourself can be scary, but incredibly rewarding. I suggest giving it a try.
  • Posted on: 12/30/2021

    Are in-person trade shows safe (enough)?

    Adapting trade shows in 2022 and beyond to offer a virtual component for those not comfortable attending helps us all to move forward in a positive direction. This is what we do as a society, we have road blocks and we find ways to work around them. I'm hopeful that we can attend shows again this year in a safe and joyful state.
  • Posted on: 08/30/2021

    Amazon finally catches the ‘buy now, pay later’ wave

    I see this as an opportunity, not just for college students, but also for small businesses that are getting off the ground and can benefit from a payment plan. Users get more product up front and as sales start to come in, they pay off their balance over 6 weeks. I don't currently see a downside to offering customers more options and making your company easy to do business with!
  • Posted on: 08/27/2021

    FMI research finds normalcy is not in the cards, not yet

    Certainly online shopping will remain strong and the convenience of grocery and food delivery has been a wonderful revelation for many. As we return to work, we're going to feel like we have less time and those added conveniences will remain in place for the future.
  • Posted on: 08/27/2021

    Do retailers need a chief data officer?

    Having a high-level data position is important within any company. Does it need to be a C-Level position? I'm not so sure. Probably more appropriate under the CTO/CIO within larger organizations. I agree that there needs to be clear expectations for gauging the success of the position. Strong partnerships with marketing and analytics will ultimately be necessary to create a successful program.
  • Posted on: 08/27/2021

    Email marketing drives sales results and sometimes drives customers away

    Keeping your email list fresh and taking the cue when someone isn't engaging to remove them from your list is critical to the health of your email program. I see email marketing as retention and brand marketing. Staying in front of your customer and exposing them to your company, products, and services without being overly invasive is the key.
  • Posted on: 08/04/2021

    Why has Shein become a breakout hit with America’s teens?

    It's the same reason people claim they want sustainable and organic products, but don't buy them. They love the concept in theory, but when it comes to their wallet, they often choose differently.
  • Posted on: 08/04/2021

    Prime members will have to pay for grocery deliveries from Whole Foods

    I don't think Prime Members will appreciate this fee. If your annual fee for delivery isn't inclusive of all Amazon properties, it diminishes the value of being a Prime Member. I suppose Amazon is betting that a majority of customers will stay for convenience and fast turnaround, but I'm not so sure. Customers have options now that grocery has caught up with technology since the pandemic. This might end up being a huge mistake for Amazon.
  • Posted on: 07/26/2021

    Should retailers continue the chatbot deception?

    I believe you can find success in a hybrid model while still being totally transparent. We offer links to our most commonly asked questions that are clearly prewritten and at the end show a Chat with Us link. We start the Chat with a bot asking for Email, Name and what their concerns are so we can link them to the most appropriate live representative. I like a bot for information gathering, but not as a way to dupe the customer into thinking they are conversing with a live person.
  • Posted on: 07/06/2021

    Is self-checkout tech the answer for DSW and other retailers facing associate shortages?

    Self checkout is a great help to many retailers, especially those faced with staffing issues and at risk of closing their doors. As long as it's a choice and not the only method, I see no issue with bringing in options. Personally, I prefer self checkout and I certainly don't think poorly of retailers that use it. I say let's give retail every opportunity to thrive as we get through this next phase of recovery.
  • Posted on: 06/23/2021

    Forget digital first. Stores first, digital second is the future of luxury retail.

    LVMH has definitely created in-store experiences that are unmatched online and customers will (of course) come back to re-experience that feeling of luxury. For that reason, I believe luxury brick and mortar retail will continue to thrive and outsell other verticals for the near future.
  • Posted on: 06/09/2021

    Did the pandemic fundamentally shift retailer/vendor relationships?

    Business relationships had to change during the pandemic. The need to understand the circumstances of each other and how you're being affected is simply a requirement if you want to maintain a healthy partnership with your vendors. I think 2020 brought out people's true colors and hopefully for most, showed how compassionate and cooperative businesses can be when faced with uncertainty and instability.
  • Posted on: 06/07/2021

    Will closing stores on Thanksgiving become the new retail tradition?

    Due to shipping delays last year with FedEx and UPS and no evidence that this year will be any different, I think all retailers will be pushing Christmas promotions early. We have to reset our customers expectations about delivery times. There's no need for stores to be open on Thanksgiving if we start pushing promotions in early November. Let's give people the holiday back and stop the insanity of midnight shopping sprees.

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