PROFILE

Heidi Sax

Content Marketing Manager, CB4

Heidi Sax is Content Marketing Manager at CB4, a technology company whose proprietary AI and machine learning algorithms and app helps retailers like Levi’s and Barnes & Noble empower store teams, transform brick-and-mortar operations, and rise to the increasing complex demands of shoppers.

Heidi quite literally grew up in retail, picking up shifts at her mom’s local gift shop, and later moving to Manhattan to work as a retail marketer for some of apparel’s most iconic brands. Now, she uses that experience to help retailers use cutting-edge technology to better serve their customers.

Heidi holds a Master of Science in Professional Writing from New York University and a Bachelor of Arts in English from Emory University.

For more information, see: The CB4 blog

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  • Posted on: 12/03/2019

    The RetailWire Christmas Commercial Challenge: Kohl’s vs. Macy’s

    Oh, that makes perfect sense re: shorter clips. Smart.
  • Posted on: 12/03/2019

    The RetailWire Christmas Commercial Challenge: Kohl’s vs. Macy’s

    Two wildly different commercials. For Kohl's, I like the enthusiasm and get the sense that it evokes how shoppers actually feel while shopping at Kohl's. At the same time, the "blatant consumerism" (as you so well put it) leaves me with nothing. For Macy's, I love the narrative, the character development, and of course the overall message. It leaves parents with the feeling that they can create a miraculous holiday for their children, regardless of gift size. But it also feels a bit dark/dreary for December and would have benefited from a good edit for time.
  • Posted on: 12/02/2019

    Will its ‘culture of recognition’ be a game winner for Dick’s Sporting Goods?

    The retail (and hospitality) industries have an outsized reliance on part-time employees. For example, 50 percent of Walmart's employees are part-time, and estimates suggest the number increases to up to 70 percent in other retail settings. Employees working limited hours have less access to benefits and make less on average per hour than those doing similar jobs working full time. It makes sense that retail employees don't feel recognized. At the same time, recognition is earned through strong performance, which is achieved as a result of ongoing, effective, engaging training. So baking training into a culture of recognition makes complete sense in retail. Thanks goes a long way, but I like that they're tying it into compensation and incentives as well.
  • Posted on: 11/26/2019

    The RetailWire Christmas Commercial Challenge: Old Navy vs. T.J. Maxx, Marshalls and HomeGoods

    TJX for the win (although ask me again on January 1 when I can't get this song out of my head). Consumers know they can get a deal at both places, but I think the focus on magic and treasures to be found in-store is a more powerful message than 40 percent off.
  • Posted on: 11/25/2019

    Why is Sephora paying associates to leave shoppers alone?

    How many shoppers know whether they need help upon entering a store? Most probably have a need/question that arises in their mind as they peruse the store. Is it really the best idea to have notified your sales associates not to assist someone whose needs may have changed? Does the shopper have to realize they need to swap basket colors if they change their mind? Why can't we train sales associates to read body language and unspoken cues from shoppers? Or simply hand out baskets when people's hands are full? This would give shoppers are opportunity to ask for assistance without pressuring them with unwanted engagement.
  • Posted on: 11/14/2019

    Shoptalk makes a statement with a conference featuring only women speakers

    I love it. I would have been happy with a 50/50 split, but 2020's female only panel is bound to spur conversation and bring fresh thinking to the table. I found the so-called "girls" lounge woefully misguided with word choice. Talk about mixed messages -- way to infantilize women as you profess to build them up!
  • Posted on: 11/11/2019

    Did social media spook Party City’s Halloween sales?

    If they saw the DIY trend coming, why didn't they act? In contrast, children's brand Primary featured a full-scale sitelet with how-to guides for hundreds of no sew, DIY costumes paired with Primary products, plus a "costume concierge" for DIY help.
  • Posted on: 11/07/2019

    Can J.C. Penney reinvent itself with its offbeat lab store?

    I'm all for Penney's. Concept stores are a tried and true tested way of determining how to evolve in brick-and-mortar (just ask digital natives like Warby Parker and Allbirds). My guess is that, despite the optics, this experiment is focused less on barber shops and store-hosted classes and more about getting the merchandise mix right and overall branding right. As others have pointed out, it would be cost-intensive and time-consuming to replicate these features at scale.
  • Posted on: 11/04/2019

    Should McDonald’s CEO have been fired over a ‘consensual relationship’?

    I agree, Rick. Not to mention the unfair advantage other employees might perceive this particular employee having as a result of a romantic relationship with the CEO. Call me a killjoy, but I think this is entirely inappropriate at CEO level--and unhealthy for the organization for lower level employees of differing positions in the hierarchy, too. Ultimately, this should be mapped out in company policy, but determined on a case-by-case basis.
  • Posted on: 10/31/2019

    Are retailers out-of-step with consumers when it comes to price?

    It comes down to perceived value. Shoppers are most compelled when the ratio of quality to cost is one that they perceive as beneficial to them. This is based as much on whether they "trust" the retailer or brand in question as it is on price and actual quality, not to mention convenience and ease of experience. We've also seen evidence that shoppers are willing to pay more for ethical production. Regardless, a race to the bottom isn't going to work.
  • Posted on: 10/30/2019

    Nordstrom nails its NYC flagship opening

    I can't wait to see this space firsthand! The photos WOW. That said, I wouldn't expect any less upon cutting the red carpet. I'll be watching to see how the store, the assortment, and the sales associates continue to deliver an exceptional shopping experience over time.
  • Posted on: 10/28/2019

    REI’s new #OptOutside message: Save the planet

    REI's call for eco-commitment elevates the campaign, and it should continue to give them a competitive edge. The tone is not one of doom and gloom, but one of individual empowerment and optimism. And that's the key to encouraging customers to embrace healthy habits vs. overwhelming them with negative messaging.
  • Posted on: 10/25/2019

    What makes a great assistant store manager?

    This list is outstanding! I would add that the assistant store manager needs to evince qualities that sales associates should emulate: show up (and on time), be positive, look presentable, go above and beyond, and just generally bring your "A" game. I agree that store managers should be able to make decisions, but I pause at the idea that assistant store managers should provide two choices for store managers about how to resolve customer concerns. In most cases, customer service issues can and should be resolved independently by the assistant manager. They should come back to the store manager with: "This was the problem, and here's how I fixed it" or even "This was the problem, here's the solution I tried, and here's what I'll do next time based on what I learned."
  • Posted on: 10/22/2019

    What should retailers do when brands post fake reviews?

    Although product reviews still hold some sway, consumers increasingly do (or should) take product reviews with a grain of salt. And retailers have too much on their plate to spend time spotting and policing vendors for fake reviews. What Sunday Riley did was unethical, but the takeaway for brands will be "don't document fake reviews in internal emails." This will still occur --just under the hood next time.
  • Posted on: 10/21/2019

    Will Barneys find success setting up shops inside Saks Fifth Avenue?

    This is a step toward identifying and then capitalizing on what's most resonant about the Barneys brand. Barneys shop-in-shops at Saks will allow Authentic Brand Group to A/B test concepts, assortments, and more with agility in environments where their target shoppers are already drawn.

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