2023 Episodes

Cara Smyth on responsible retail
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The world is in an era where sustainability and responsible retail business practices are increasingly crucial. For the latest episode of “What Just Happened,” host Christine Russo further explored the hows and whys of this pressing issue by interviewing Cara Smyth, Global Senior Managing Director for ESG and Responsible Retail at Accenture, and Chair…

James Tenser discusses retail supply chain management
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The current landscape of the retail supply chain has been in turmoil in recent years, with unexpected and disruptive challenges like the Suez and Panama Canal incidents, alongside the ongoing digitization struggles. Now, this volatile environment turns up critical questions about the resilience and adaptability of supply chains given unanticipated disruptions. With the retail…

retail innovation
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In an era where digitalization and sustainability are reshaping the retail landscape, Giovanni Zaccariello, SVP of Global Visual Experience at Coach, offers a fresh perspective on retail innovation. With the post-pandemic world demanding more engaging and responsible brand experiences, Coach’s strategy stands out. A recent study by McKinsey highlights the increasing importance of digital…

Digital transformation of retail
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In an era where retail is rapidly transforming, understanding the nuances of technology, strategy, and innovation has never been more critical. The retail industry is at a crossroads, grappling with the integration of digital and physical experiences, and the stakes are high. This backdrop sets the stage for a compelling discussion on the future of…

retail legend Arnie Cohen
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In the latest episode of What Just Happened, host Christine Russo sits down with retail legend Arnie Cohen, CEO of J. Peterman Company, to discuss the surprising resurgence of catalogs in the digital age. Cohen delves into the tactile experience catalogs offer, the challenges faced during the COVID-19 pandemic, and the integration of cart.com…

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Retail theft, an age-old issue for brick-and-mortar establishments, has hit a particularly troubling peak recently. With the uptick in both organized retail crime and opportunistic shoplifting, traditional methods of prevention like security cameras, RFID tags, and in-person surveillance are proving to be less effective. As such, the transition towards innovative AI-driven solutions like Veesion‘s…

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The fashion industry, often criticized for lacking sustainable practices, finds its common defense in the notion of retail therapy. However, a paradigm shift for sustainability in fashion is on the horizon as professionals within the industry retrain in sustainable fields like agroecology and biofabrication. By 2025, consumers might be empowered with the knowledge of…

future of retail
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What Just Happened host Christine Russo and her guest, Andy Ruben, Executive Chairman and Founder of Trove, discuss the future of retail, the impact of brands entering the secondary market, and the growing importance of sustainability in retail. Ruben believes the secondary market presents significant sustainability and brand loyalty opportunities, particularly for high-quality brands…

sustainability in retail
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As the conversation on climate moves from change to crisis, sustainability in retail is no longer a dream to obtain; it’s a necessity that industry leaders take meaningful action. The retail industry, a notorious contributor to global waste and pollution, is a primary player in these dialogues. Recent studies suggest that around 85% of…

Buying into Better
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Consumers have multiple choices in spending their dollars, and today’s consumers invest in companies and brands that align with their values and needs. Buying into Better™ is more than a concept or a trend; it’s the way of the present in how consumers channel their purchasing behavior. Brands don’t get judged on their quality alone….

EY-Shopify
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On this episode of the What Just Happened? podcast, host Christine Russo speaks with Warren Tomlin, Managing Partner at EY, on the new alliance his company just made with Shopify. It might seem strange for a company like EY to team with Shopify, but Warren makes a case for it. “It’s not about how it…

Cryptocurrency
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The growth of cryptocurrency is a sign of how digitalization is the norm, even as it sees its own transformation. But the popularity of cryptocurrency is why its growth rate is slated to jump with a CAGR of 12.5 percent between now and 2030. However, market watchers can expect to see some shifts as changes…

Self-Regulation
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With the collapse of the FTX exchange and one of its founders, the concerns surrounding the regulation of cryptocurrency have overtaken talks about its security. Currently, cryptocurrency is “regulated,” but the lack of uniformity in its regulation has left much to be desired about its safety, particularly for consumers. But self-regulation may be a solution…

Next Generation
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What does the next generation of B2B want? What does it need? Many believe it’s the metaverse. In 2022, more than 75% of U.S. marketers invested in metaverse-related activities. Top retail brands like Gucci and Lego saw the benefits of investing in the metaverse and leaped. 2023 tells a potentially different story. In its 2023…

Tecsys
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Tecsys provides supply chain management solutions to assist businesses in managing their operations in a way that is streamlined and effective. These solutions encompass a range of services, such as warehouse management systems, transportation management systems, order management systems, and supply chain analytics. Their cloud-based platform is both scalable and flexible, catering to businesses of…

accelerators
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Starting a business from the ground up isn’t easy. Luckily, across the world, retail accelerator programs have been igniting a lot of entrepreneur’s ideas by providing them with access to investors, funding, and advice, and in return for all the work, a certain percentage of equity in the company. However, there’s a catch – the…

try before you buy
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In this episode of What Just Happened, host Christine Russo invites guest Donny Ouyang, CEO of Blackcart, to chat about his company and its try before you buy SaaS solution. The try before you buy software solution is a fairly new concept for the industry. But as retailers like Londre try it on, Ouyang…

private-label grocery market
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In 2021, overall private-label brand dollar share grew 1% and hit a record $199 billion in all U.S. retail channels. Phillip Russo, Founder of Global Retail Brands Magazine, tracks the trends in the private-label market. He spoke with Christine Russo, the host of What Just Happened, on the factors leading to the growth of…

Sustainability in Industry 4.0
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What is Industry 4.0? A revolution that has many names, Industry 4.0 is the name of the 21st century technology boom that is creating advanced AI, robotics, and smart, connected devices. But how can industry 4.0 help change the way businesses conduct business? On this episode of “What Just Happened?“, host Christine Russo spoke…

2022 Episodes

FindMine
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Over 89% of digital businesses are now investing in personalization marketing tactics. An individualized approach is said to hook the consumer, invite more interaction, and help boost sales. But investing in an individualized campaign is costly and it might not be all it’s made up to be. How should companies invest in their future…

startup business model
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With the successes of businesses and companies like Facebook, Apple, and Uber, startups are more common than ever, as many niche markets with a startup business model have proven to be lucrative. But starting a new business idea and finding success within it doesn’t happen overnight. In fact, failure is more likely because getting…

digital fashion
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Digital fashion is the latest rage in the fashion industry at the moment. According to The Digital Speaker, in recent years fashion houses have been working with gaming developers to produce fashion in 3D. This trend has been around for a while, but it really picked up steam during pandemic lockdowns, says Forbes. As…

return avalanche
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The rise in online ordering during the pandemic created an inevitable side effect: returns. Retail returns rose an average of 16.6% in 2021 versus 10.6% in 2020, according to the National Retail Federation and Appraise Retail. That equals $761 billion in returned merchandise, creating a dilemma for retailers and logistical concerns for shippers. Christine…

linear and CTV
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Today’s technology provides many options for those wanting to reach audiences through TV. Linear TV is no longer the only option; CTV, or connected television, continues to spread as more and more consumers cut the cord of traditional linear options and move to internet streaming content. Estimates indicate the bulk of television viewership will…

Web 3.0
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Web 3.0 is the talk of the digital world. Yet, as the metaverse, NFT trading, and Web3 grows, so too, does confusion on its purpose and uses. So much so, in fact, that a Harvard Business Review poll found nearly 70% of respondents did not know what “Web3” meant. So, how do brands build…

data
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Impacting the behavior of different shoppers requires different tactics based on individual preferences. Understanding how to harness the data you have about your consumers is key to customizing messages. In 2021, online shopping accounted for 14% of all sales, according to Smart Brief. Securing those sales requires multiple touchpoints that speak to shoppers. On…

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Retail has always been a gamble. What if it didn’t have to be a risk? Retailers are eager to understand consumer behavior and desires before committing to inventory. As expectations for environmentally conscious business practices, retailers are steering away from waste. First Insight helps businesses reach sustainability goals and accurately forecast consumer behavior. How…

commerce
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Imagine a world of commerce where you can see what an item of clothing will actually look like on you without having to physically go into the store. It may seem crazy, but that very well could be in the future of online retail with the development of Web3, especially as retailers explore going…

service
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Every one of us has, at some point or another, experienced the dreaded “let me put you on hold” when attempting to speak to customer service. Well, that may no longer be an issue in the future, as video and voice AI shopping and service assistance for brands and enterprises are rolling out. With…

online
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Almost any good or service can be provided online in today’s day and age. You can do just about anything, from browsing and ordering clothing online to ordering groceries on an app and having them delivered to your home. But when it comes to retail shopping for clothing items, how will you know if…

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Different shoppers search for products in unique ways. It’s estimated that 87% of shoppers start their purchase journey with online searches. Personalization is an incredibly effective tool. But how can online retailers implement the language of the user throughout their product descriptions, search results, and website?   On this episode of What Just Happened?…

Cannes Lions
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Cannes Lions is where creative excellence shines. The International Festival of Creativity, held since 1954, is where the world’s top-ranking agencies, brands, and creatives gather to share and collaborate. After a two-year festival hiatus due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the Cannes Lions roared again. WGSN, a leader in consumer insights, was there at the…

Retail
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The present is fleeting. What consumers want today may not be the same tomorrow, so for retail strategists to stay on top, they must focus on the future ahead. Inflation and rising prices affect consumer spending today. Will those spending habits change long-term behaviors? What innovations will lead retailers to success from now until…

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AI & AR (augmented reality) Try-On technology makes shopping for fashion, beauty, and skin care products fun. Leading the charge in this AI & AR space is Wayne Liu, Chief Growth Officer, and President of Perfect Corp. For the past several years, Perfect Corp has stood as an industry leader in AI & AR for…

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Justin Hochberg, CEO and Co-Founder of Virtual Brand Group, sums up his company’s mission in one easy sentence, “We put you in the Metaverse.” Hochberg joined Christine Russo to explain how Virtual Brand Group harnesses the power of web 3.0 for I.P. by creating consumer experiences to socialize, shop, make friends, and develop products in…

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SEO is a process in which a website is primed for direct traffic from search engines. SEO video is expected to grow in popularity and trend this year. Christine Russo chats with Bernadette Butler, CEO, and Founder of StoryTap. StoryTap is an intuitive system to collect and produce consumer videos on a vast scale. Butler’s…

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The function of e-commerce has been a vital source of selling on online platforms for decades now. The nature of the large scale selling component allows various types of companies to reach and sell to their customers. In the gaming ecosystem, not only has that been the norm, but its future is bright as new…

Will It Be Possible to Create A Fully Autonomous Store?
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Walking into a convenience store is meant to be quick and seamless, but often when a crowd appears, long lines can make shopping tedious and frustrating. The rise of artificial intelligence (AI) has made its way into shopping. CEO and Co-Founder Steve Gu sits down with What Just Happened? Host Christine Russo on the direction…

AI is Driving Market Personalization
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When Gary Hawkings first started his career in retail, he didn’t know exactly where the road might take him. Rightfully, he has carved his own path and now sits down with host Christine Russo as the founder and CEO of CART, the Center of Advancing Retail and Technology to discuss CART’s purpose and the driving…

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Join Christine Russo, a leading industry analyst, in her discussions with leaders in retail, technology, innovation, metaverse and more.   Getting consumers to stay means providing quality product and quality rewards. Andrew Forman, CEO and Founder of Givz.com, a donation-driven marketing tool, sits down with host Christine Russo to discuss the story behind Givz and…