PROFILE

Dave Bruno

Marketing Director, Aptos
With over 25 years of experience in retail technology, Dave supports Aptos with brand development, corporate messaging, and product marketing. His deep resume includes widely varying experiences helping bring retail technology to market at GERS, Escalate Retail, RedPrairie, JDA and Epicor.

Dave is a frequent speaker at industry events and is highly regarded for his ability to identify emerging technology trends that will impact the retail model. He has worked with many of the world’s leading retailers, and he is an accomplished marketer, having won numerous awards for his content marketing programs and campaigns.

He is a member of the advisory board for DemandGen Report, and the executive producer of the CommerceofCaring podcast series. Dave is also a regular contributor to EngagingCustomersDifferently.com
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  • Posted on: 07/19/2018

    Prime Day success extends beyond Amazon

    I have no doubt that Prime Day was a financial success for Amazon, despite the outage. However, I wonder if Amazon realizes how different the shopping experience is on Prime Day from every other day of the year (and given the big sales lift, if they really care). Prime Day shopping is a significant departure from shopping Amazon any other day, and not in a good way. Searching is inefficient (at best), personalization virtually disappears, and the manufactured sense of urgency entices people to make quick decisions rather than decisions backed up by research and reviews (which increases the risk of lower satisfaction with the products and Amazon). I am glad to see the positive results from across the industry as Cyber Tuesday begins to enter the zeitgeist, but am disappointed by Amazon's departure from their brand promise. For more on my Prime Day experiences and insights, click here.
  • Posted on: 07/16/2018

    Need a nap? Casper opened a store for that

    Great idea to place Dreamery shops in airports, David! Brilliant!
  • Posted on: 07/16/2018

    Target offers discounts as teachers prep for back-to-school

    Whether Target supporting teachers with discounts is a sales effort or a goodwill effort doesn't really matter to me. I applaud every retailer that chips in to help our teachers, and I bet this promotion will be helpful to Target in the short run. Here's hoping the promotion is so successful that Target decides to offer the discount to teachers all year long!
  • Posted on: 07/11/2018

    Will Amazon team with third-party sellers as a Prime perk?

    Retailers beware! Sharing your priceless customer data with Amazon -- and paying for the privilege to do so -- is a devil's bargain. Helping Amazon secure more Prime customers and giving them access to that rich data to help them win more share of wallet from you in the long run? Decline! Do not pass "Go," and instead go directly to investing in new experiences and more localized assortments!
  • Posted on: 07/10/2018

    Nordstrom opening more Local stores without inventory

    The absence of inventory, to me, is a non-issue. What I really like about the Local concept is the fact that Nordstrom is bringing their experience to their customers. On-staff stylists, locally curated assortments, and on-site alterations, packaged with all the other Nordstrom amenities is, in my opinion, a brilliant idea. Certainly the key will be ensuring that the assortment aligns with local tastes but, if they can master that, I see nothing but positives in this program for Nordstrom. If they include store pickup/curbside delivery and returns for all purchases, regardless of original purchase location, that would put this program over the top.
  • Posted on: 07/06/2018

    Abercrombie & Fitch goes to college with a new store concept


    I am not sure if the question is which format (Polaris, OH or Learning Labs) represents the future for Abercrombie & Fitch. Rather, I believe both concepts add value to solving the two biggest challenges retailers face today: developing unique, relevant assortments and creating experiences that engage their target audiences. If Abercrombie & Fitch hopes to really connect with 18-to-25-year-old shoppers, then the college campus locations seem like great places to listen to their customers to experiment with assortments that have high appeal on campus. The Ohio location seems like it represents an opportunity to experiment with new experiences to find the services and options that most appeal to shoppers. The learnings from both formats can then be compiled and applied to future store strategies.
  • Posted on: 07/05/2018

    Target looks to build rep as ‘America’s easiest place to shop’

    I applaud Target's continued investment in experiences, and I expect that these new offerings will enhance their reputation for customer-centric experiences. I am not convinced that curbside delivery is all that important to most consumers, but that is more a reflection of my personal bias than a sound data-based opinion. Regardless, I would encourage Target to also focus on the inventory and assortment side of the experience. Higher in-stock positions on items that are more relevant and curated to the local community will, in my opinion, have a greater long-term impact on average transaction size and lifetime value than will curbside pickup.
  • Posted on: 07/03/2018

    Ride-sharers buy while they ride

    While Cargo definitely takes "convenience" to a new level, and some passengers will certainly take advantage of the opportunity to purchase en route, I do not see this being a market-moving program. Satisfying the midnight munchies and replenishing the occasional tube of toothpaste may be helpful on occasion, I suppose, but it doesn't feel like more than just that -- an occasional convenience.
  • Posted on: 06/26/2018

    Analyst: Prime perk could eventually double customers at Whole Foods

    While I do think this new program will extend Whole Foods' reach further into existing customers' wallets, I definitely don't see this doubling their total customer base. A few bucks saved on a few items will not significantly shift the market and attract people who heretofore have shied away from the perceived higher prices typical of most of the Whole Foods lineup.
  • Posted on: 06/21/2018

    Home Depot to make same- or next-day deliveries virtually everywhere

    This is exactly what Home Depot should be doing to extend the great progress they have made with their One Home Depot initiative. Speed is often a critical part of many improvement projects, and making it easy/fast for people to access the parts they need will only deepen their reliance on/loyalty to Home Depot. And while the $1.2 billion investment is certainly significant, it is a relative drop in the bucket compared to the money Amazon has been (and continues to) spending to expand their reach for same day/next day delivery. When Home Depot combines these new capabilities with their already very strong store fulfillment offerings, they will be in a very strong competitive position. And they are streamlining logistics and reducing costs as well! Kudos to them for a well-constructed and well-implemented strategy.
  • Posted on: 06/19/2018

    Best Buy makes health and wellness tech a strategic priority

    There are so many things to like about the Assured Living program. The program offers a very specific entry point into how customers use IoT in their lives and adds tangible value. It has a very specific -- and expanding -- target audience, enabling clear, targeted messages to drive interest. I applaud Best Buy for this effort and expect it will be very effective for them, if implemented correctly.
  • Posted on: 06/19/2018

    Will an online dating site formula work for pop-ups?

    I am a firm believer in the power of pop-ups, and while I believe space-seeking assistance is valuable, the bigger point here is that pop-ups enable retailers to expand the reach of their stores and experiences. I expect that the role of pop-ups will continue to expand in retailers' marketing and revenue strategies for years to come, and companies like PopUp Shops will provide an important -- and growing -- service.
  • Posted on: 06/14/2018

    Do retailers need RFID to do BOPIS right?

    Inventory accuracy is the essential building block to successful store fulfillment - be it pick up in-store or ship from store. The question of profitability is of course important, but long before we worry about profitability we should be worrying about the customer experience. In this era of fleeting loyalty, failing to keep our promises to shoppers can be an unrecoverable mistake. Accurate inventory -- and RFID is certainly a powerful and efficient way to achieve high degrees of inventory accuracy -- is without question the critical first step on the road to profitability and, just as importantly, reliable omnichannel order fulfillment.
  • Posted on: 06/12/2018

    Are chronic online returners only a few bad apples?

    As Paula said, high return rates are a fact of life for online retail. And even if chronic returners make up a disproportionate amount of the returns, retailers can not afford to make returns more cumbersome or difficult in response. People shop online because of the convenience, but they only do so with retailers they trust -- and easy returns are a big part of that trust. We must do our best to provide comprehensive product/fit/sizing/quality information up front to minimize returns as much as possible, but we simply can not encumber the return process when returns inevitably occur.
  • Posted on: 06/12/2018

    Should retailers incentivize store staff to accept digital transformation?


    As a provider of technology solutions that often impact the daily routines of thousands of store associates, we have learned that "incentivizing" adoption can - and should - take many forms. Internal PR campaigns are an absolutely critical part of the process, but these campaigns alone are rarely enough. The most successful change management programs we see always include a combination of PR and promotions, regular and authentic communications, reports from the field (particularly from pilot stores and early roll-out stores) and, finally, evaluations, including both feedback from associates and concrete metrics from stores after they adopt the new technology. We rarely see monetary incentives and, when we do, they are typically less effective than well-coordinated and well-communicated change management programs.

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