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:
  • Posted on: 04/11/2018

    What makes a successful retail CEO?

    In these times, leaders must put emotional intelligence into action with as much rigor as every other area of management. That's because "humanness" at the center of the business model is what drives overall success. Additionally, C-suite leaders must lean in toward being true customer advocates versus merchant-centric. Having the intelligence and guts to move the organization ahead to where the shopper is going will make the difference. Too many retail execs still believe they can "change shopper behavior" to meet old business models!
  • Posted on: 04/10/2018

    Barnes & Noble’s crowdsourcing app engages readers and earns solid reviews

    I feel like this functionality should be part of the main app, since the core of Barnes & Noble is book sales. It’s s bit late to become the hub of crowdsourced input given the depth and breadth of Goodreads.
  • Posted on: 04/09/2018

    Retailers face criticism for failure to protect customer data

    My answer to being involved in the MyFitnessPal app breach that I just got notified about this morning: delete the app for good. Period. A breach in trust of this nature signals the END of the relationship. Retailers that won't invest in data security don't deserve my business.
  • Posted on: 04/09/2018

    Where will the ‘new generation of female explorers’ take The North Face’s business?

    Three great concepts here. 1) A simple theory of adding role models to inspire. 2) Making sure that women are portrayed accurately. 3) Finding context that is meaningful and believable. Add all three to great products and you have a win!
  • Posted on: 04/05/2018

    Should retailers lower expectations around last-mile delivery?

    Working to lower consumer expectations is the LAST THING retailers should be doing. Wow! Customer--obsessed actions reap big rewards, so retailers need to figure out the back end or wave goodbye forever to shoppers they can't live without!
  • Posted on: 04/05/2018

    Target succeeds by going big on convenience in small stores

    I like everything about this small store strategy except the higher pricing. It seems so NOT neighborly and community-focused, given that the residents of the urban neighborhoods can just as easily shop online. Why bite the hand that feeds you?
  • Posted on: 04/02/2018

    What would an acquisition of Humana mean for Walmart and its rivals?

    The idea seems feasible, knowing services margins are better than just product margins at retail, but taking on the problem of lack of consumer trust in critical services is the giant risk. Can Walmart really win here or is this just another "one-up" on Amazon move?
  • Posted on: 03/30/2018

    Former Walmart U.S. CEO raises prospect of breaking up Amazon

    In a free market the shopper gets the decision, not big businesses seeking a "win" by trouncing on each other. Power to the shoppers!
  • Posted on: 03/30/2018

    Microsoft, Walmart and other brands play content police

    Consumers are now calling out brands that exhibit bad company or bad behavior because they believe every individual has a voice that can be heard and counted. The brand "megaphone" is over. Brands need to get human, do good and find a real reason to be worthy.
  • Posted on: 03/29/2018

    KB Toys plans a Christmas comeback

    I like the idea of pop-up locations, but KB Toys had better be prepared to deliver great merchandising and hire "experience teams" to deliver what shoppers have been looking for in this category. They're going to need strong relationships with toy brands as well, which they may not have now. A scenario that leaves a lot of unsold inventory in temporary stores is the last thing the major toy brands will tolerate. Maybe it's best to let sleeping dogs lie.
  • Posted on: 03/28/2018

    Are Amazon lockers turning Whole Foods into a quick shop destination?

    My sense is that the micro visit is not necessarily the end game for Whole Foods. I think they're testing the pickup hub strategy ... and will be able to expand the size of lockers as the consumer gets acclimated to the idea of retail hubs for Amazon purchase pickups.
  • Posted on: 03/23/2018

    IKEA asks, will virtual inventory be key to the new urban showroom?

    I believe this urban virtual store format can be a solid element in IKEAs future growth, especially if combined with DIFM or assisted assembly in-home. Adding AR makes it a better bet.
  • Posted on: 03/19/2018

    West Elm sees opportunity to sell local experiences outside its stores

    West Elm appeals to a large shopper cohort that has not had a lot of opportunity to acquire skills around the home. Helping people learn and being a part of projects positions West Elm as a partner instead of a store. It’s a win-win!
  • Posted on: 03/15/2018

    GreenWise Market won’t name drop Publix anymore

    This expansion plan is on such a slow roll that I believe GreenWise Market would benefit from use of the strong Publix brand halo. It adds credibility.
  • Posted on: 03/14/2018

    What does Ring mean for Amazon?

    What Amazon has wisely invested in are the anchors of consumer trust, the asset that will keep them in any type of delivery option they want to imagine and then execute.

Contact Anne

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