3 Quick Questions with Marcy Patzer of Scala

By October 21, 2011 No Comments

Digital Signage Spot caught up with Marcy Patzer, newly appointed Senior Director of Retail Strategy at Scala, to get her perspective on the role of digital signage in the retail industry. Patzer_marcy50 - crop2

DSS: For most retailers, increasing same store sales is the top priority. What’s the role of digital signage in addressing that challenge?

MP: In majority of cases, retail stores have frequent shoppers and these shoppers have certain drive patterns through the store. Retailers want to increase sales from these regular customers and this is where digital signage comes into the picture.

With digital signage, you are looking to break that regular shopping pattern. By doing that even for a split second, you allow customers to stop their routine and focus on something new. That split second can truly change customer shopping procedures and buying cycles.

Here are two key considerations for retailers as they develop digital media strategies to influence customer buying patterns.

First, look at the combination of mobility and predictive analytics. With these tools, we are going to know who is in the store, exactly what their shopping path is and how we can break that pattern. And more importantly, what message can be delivered to them. Digital signage will help a retailer hone in on what a customer wants. It’s not going to connect with a female talking about power tools unless the retailer knows she is a do-it-yourselfer.

The second consideration is location. We are moving away from the “hang and bang.” Retailers don’t want monitors to just hang from the ceiling. They want to incorporate the monitors into store fixtures, integrating them into the aesthetic of the store. Retailers spend too much time and money on their stores for monitors to be placed haphazardly. That approach is not only hurtful from an aesthetic point of view but limits the effectiveness of digital signage.

DSS: There are many technologies – such as QR codes, RFID and social media – shaking up retail environments. How will these technologies interact with digital signage solutions?

MP:  The opportunity is to integrate with these technologies so that we can aggregate all of the valuable information and consumer insights being provided.  A solid content management system such as Scala allows retailers to pull data from different sources for collaboration. And this data can be used to specifically target individual shoppers with relevant messaging, coupons, rebates and more.

Another emerging trend is the use of social media. Today, consumers are shopping not because some designers said a specific brand or store is cool, but because their friends think it is cool.

Social media is huge and will continue to get more influential. Increasingly, digital signage will become a platform to engage with customers. And with this connection, retailers can gather data about what these people are saying on social media and doing in the store. This will help them be better able to deliver some important instant messages that hit home and target individual consumers. It is a huge opportunity that digital signage will be providing to retailers – that previously did not exist.

DSS: You recently joined Scala. What attracted you to join the company and what do you see as Scala’s opportunity in the retail market?

MP:  I’ve actually been a Scala partner with a few different companies for about 13 years. And one of the things that I always communicated when I presented Scala against other partners was about Scala being a software company. That’s what they do; that’s what they love the most. Scala focuses on it and is continuously innovating.

This evolution has made the software even more stable and powerful – and many end users are not even taking complete advantage of the total solution. Helping customers tap the full potential of the Scala platform is a huge opportunity and I’m really excited about being part of the company.

Ms. Patzer is working with Scala in a role devoted to retail solutions.  She is a Board Member of the Digital Signage Association (DSA). Digital Signage Spot will again sit down with Marcy as the holiday season begins and customers start packing the stores.