PROFILE

Tom Erskine

CMO, One Door
Tom Erskine is Chief Marketing Officer and SVP of Product for One Door, based in Boston, Massachusetts. One Door serves many of the world’s largest retailers, delivering a new category of software improving in-store merchandising execution, hyper-local assortments, and sophisticated store analytics.

Prior to One Door, he started and grew Pegasystems’ Communications and Media segment into one of its largest businesses, serving 6 of the world’s 10 largest providers. Previously, Tom held senior marketing and product management roles with Convergys Corporation and BCGI.

Tom currently serves on the Board of Directors of Campus SIMs, an organization providing affordable mobile services for international students, and has served in an advisory role for successful start-up organizations including BrandNetworks and WHERE.COM.

He holds multiple US and international patents for his innovations in customer experience, networking, and business support systems.
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  • Posted on: 03/21/2018

    How personal can Target’s customer service get?

    Go Target! The investment in store "experts" is sensible, since the products consumers want help with are higher $ and margin goods (health&beauty, electronics, clothing) that can help store sales/sq. ft. performance. Also, given that they serve a younger, more affluent customer than their discount peers, they have the most to lose to Amazon, and therefore differentiating on in-store experience is critical.
  • Posted on: 03/16/2018

    Consumers say gender roles have changed. Why hasn’t advertising?

    Today, a majority feel gender depictions are properly represented so there is no reason for a mass-market buyer to change their approach. What will be interesting is watching how fast cultural norms shift as advertisers choose to speak appropriately to the 30 percent.
  • Posted on: 02/22/2018

    Is an AR demo better than the real thing?

    Replacing demos I can touch and feel with ones I can't doesn't "augment" reality, it does the opposite. Until retailers recognize this, their strategies are unlikely to be successful. I was blown away at NRF by the number of technology demonstrations that fail to understand that what makes a retail experience great is that it engages at least 4 of 5 senses.
  • Posted on: 01/29/2018

    Robots are not the answer to store challenges

    Robots are not the answer ... yet. Right now, interacting with in-store robots isn't "better" than interacting with well-trained associates, so it is hard to imagine widespread deployment. But the unfortunate and scary truth is that robots are collectively getting smarter far faster than we are (not autonomously, they are being taught).
  • Posted on: 01/22/2018

    Amazon Go goes live

    Thanks Sterling. The big question is, what is preventing other retailers from adopting such a relentless approach to customer experience innovation?!
  • Posted on: 01/22/2018

    Amazon Go goes live

    Yes, yes and yes (eventually). Amazon's relentless focus on the customer experience will mean that they will move quickly on the "Go" concept, as it removes a key customer pain point. What one-click purchases meant for online, Amazon Go will mean for physical retail.
  • Posted on: 01/09/2018

    Will consumers wear Alexa-enabled AR glasses?

    If Amazon is really serious about giving users a way to carry Alexa around, then I'd imagine they'll just take another try at the mobile phone market. As many have already mentioned, the heads up display approach of glasses has already proven to be a tough nut to crack with the exception of specialized jobs.
  • Posted on: 12/27/2017

    What retail apocalypse?

    Consumer confidence and wage gains among the middle class drive retail sales, and we are finally seeing that in the U.S. Add to that the timing of Christmas on a Monday and you get a great year for stores. But for some retail formats, this is only a reprieve. Indoor malls, large-format department stores with minimally differentiated collections, etc. may have been granted a reprieve this holiday, but the long-term forecast is not good. In the meantime, retailers that continue to innovate are seeing strong performances, and there are plenty of new entrants from the e-commerce world that recognize the need for a physical presence.
  • Posted on: 11/08/2017

    Big Data is done, put a fork in it

    History repeats itself, and tech is no exception. The rise and fall of the term "big data" is no different from the rise and fall of other terms "cloud," "AI," "Cognitive Computing," "SOA," "Micro-services," et al. Each of these terms describe technical tool or concept with the potential to solve real business problems. Once people find the killer application of the tool or concept, the need to continue to use the term goes away.
  • Posted on: 10/23/2017

    Apple opens invisible hangout in Chicago

    Apple continues to push the rest of the tech industry in the direction it needs to go -- positioning their locations as "experience centers" rather than as stores. And they also continue to prove that when you sell an expensive item, creating these experiences doesn't hurt store performance -- it helps. When their sales start to meaningfully decline, I'll worry.
  • Posted on: 10/05/2017

    Retailers lack of trust undermines predictive personalization’s potential

    Solution providers need to more effectively package their technology to drive business impact without requiring a complete transformation of the existing shopper and associate experience. For example in physical retail, instead of attempting to personalize the offers made by an associate on the floor, they should focus on creating personalized cross-sell and upsell recommendations at checkout. This approach will greatly reduce the disruption of implementing the solution, while still driving an ROI that can be used to justify additional investment.
  • Posted on: 10/02/2017

    Could retail workers benefit from implanted microchips?

    I don't mean to be dystopian and it is easy to say never -- but imagine that in 10 years an employee has two choices, 1.) install the chip or 2.) lose their job to a robot. It is impossible for us today to make assumptions about how people will make decisions down the road.
  • Posted on: 09/27/2017

    Should shorter lines for the iPhone 8 concern Apple?

    Smartphones are no longer revolutionary, just evolutionary. Therefore there is nothing about the iPhone 8 worth waiting in line for. It remains to be seen whether the X can re-kindle excitement in pushing the envelope of what a smartphone "is," but I wouldn't bet on it.
  • Posted on: 08/31/2017

    Are fashion trends moving too fast for retail?

    Accelerating the buy process is only a piece of the puzzle. Getting new products into stores and on to shelves is another. Retailers are slowly re-thinking their store supply chain processes, but their efforts lack urgency. It's almost as if they've either given up or don't understand the gravity of the situation.
  • Posted on: 08/14/2017

    Does the internet know us better than we know ourselves?

    The power of Big Data is the ability to find new predictors of customer preference and behavior that were previously invisible to the naked eye. These new predictors enable retailers to make better recommendations, improve product availability and significantly improve the customer experience. Instead of relying on survey responses, gut feel and heuristic approaches, these new systems explore massive amounts of data and help make connections that even consumers might not recognize. The hard part is doing it without being creepy. Just ask Target ...

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