As Ro, the parent company of telemedicine brands Ro, Rory and Zero, looks to diversify its marketing mix, the company is looking to partner more with institutions that its target audience already trusts. Earlier this month, Roman, its men's focused brand which sells generic hair loss and erectile dysfunction medication over the internet, announced that it signed a multi-year deal with Major League Baseball to sponsor its television and digital media coverage around Father's Day.
Chicago-based startup Foxtrot, which is building a chain of upscale convenience stores, today expanded to its second market with the opening of a store in Dallas. The startup's expansion comes as chains like 7-Eleven and Wawa are also putting more effort into delivery.
Nordstrom, Kohl's and Macy's are doing a lot of "new retail" right, but retooling the department store for modern customers involves more than just updates to store models, influencer collaborations or e-commerce initiatives -- these stores are competing in a new retail landscape that has called the value proposition of a department store into question.
Walmart is aggressively testing new delivery capabilities – both built in house and in partnership with startups – as the retailer prepares for a delivery war with Amazon. Within the past two weeks, Walmart has announced that it's testing in-home grocery delivery, piloting a grocery delivery subscription service, and, most recently, partnering with a Silicon Valley startup called Gartik to test out using autonomous trucks to deliver goods between warehouses and fulfillment centers.
Kroger's digital sales are increasing as the company invests more in services like delivery and in-store pickup, but they continue to eat into the company's profits. During its first quarter earnings on Thursday, Kroger reported that digital sales were up 42% compared to the same period last year, but same-store sales excluding fuel were up just 1.5%.
Physical retail strategies have become integral to the growth of direct-to-consumer brands, as they seek out customers they can't reach online. Members of the first generation of DTC, like Warby Parker and Casper now have aggressive store expansion plans. Home goods brand Parachute is one such brand that's undergoing a rapid physical expansion.
As a retailer targeting teens, Forever 21 faces stiff competition as bankruptcy has rattled the category. But Forever 21's specialty -- fast, disposable fashion released on a seemingly never-ending cadence -- has helped to protect it. Middle-of-the-road retail has been susceptible to being squeezed out as customers skew to the high and low ends of fashion's totem pole.
There are no one or two go-to-retailers whose stores fitness startups can start selling their products in before opening their own physical retail space, to learn how their products do in stores. Retailers need to be willing to dedicate floor space for product demos, and to assist with delivery and installation of the bulky equipment. So, startups have been experimenting with pop-ups that allow them to leverage existing retail space to get a better sense of what customers want.
Pinterest said in its S-1 filing, released in March, that it was starting to build more product and measurement tools to better serve digitally native vertical brands, and had a dedicated sales team to serve these emerging brands. In the months since then, Pinterest has released a new campaign type called conversion optimization out of beta that it said it says has proven popular among DTC brands especially.
Over the past three years, Walgreens has been culling the number of products it has been carrying under its private label brands, placing a greater emphasis on categories like health and beauty care, while at the same time creating new brands around certain categories to help them stand out more.
Pet retailer Chewy made a splash on the stock market this week. The online company priced its initial offering at about $22 per share, valuing it at $8.77 billion. On Friday, shares climbed to $39, and the company raised $1 billion in the IPO. PetSmart bought Chewy in 2017 for $3.4 billion, but spun it off in order to help pay down its debt.
Outdoor Voices' vp of technology Kevin Harwood discussed Outdoor Voices' in-store strategy, what kind of results it has seen from Instagram Checkout and how the brand is thinking about investing in mobile and personalization.
In the past, Foot Locker had to figure out how to market products from companies like Adidas and Nike after it had already been created. Now, CMO Jed Berger and Foot Locker are working more closely with vendors to develop product exclusively for their stores, using customer data and insight from Berger’s marketing team that its vendor partners don’t have access to.
Burrow, like many other DTC brands that are getting into physical retail for the first time, is leaning heavily on events and experiences to drive people into stores. Its second store is open today in Chicago, which Burrow chose because it's the brand's second-biggest market behind New York City in terms of both revenue and customers.
Lululemon is seeing positive results from its investments in new categories like men's, e-commerce capabilities and international growth. During its first quarter earnings report on Wednesday, the company saw revenue increase 20% over the same period last year, to $782 million.
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