PROFILE

Kenneth Leung

Retail and Customer Experience Expert

Kenneth Leung was the enterprise industry director at Avaya, responsible for vertical industry strategies.

Kenneth previously was with Cisco Systems, with the last position as senior marketing strategy manager for Internet of Everything campaign. His roles at Cisco included development of private sector industries strategy and messaging at Cisco as well as retail industry marketing.

Prior to Cisco, he worked at IBM software group in WebSphere Commerce and Information Management groups with responsibility in marketing management for retail and e-commerce. Before joining IBM, Kenneth was retail industry director for Informix Software where he was responsible for market management and programs.

Kenneth Leung is currently working on his first marketing book and pursuing future opportunities. Learn more at:about.me/kennethleung

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  • Posted on: 12/03/2020

    Are endless aisles more trouble than they’re worth for retailers?

    Many retailers can't "out Amazon" Amazon and don't have the logistics and warehousing to handle the distribution side. For them, endless aisles online creates too much choice for customers and increases the backend costs.
  • Posted on: 12/03/2020

    Were record Cyber Monday/Week sales enough to help retailers salvage 2020?

    This depends on the retailer and the target customer base, and how much physical store space they are committed to. Stores like Target have done well stocking what people wanted in one location while department stores who already struggled with foot traffic in-store are challenged to deliver their value online. This is one of the those years that you have to look at the micro- and not at the macro-level numbers.
  • Posted on: 11/30/2020

    Was Black Friday a bust?

    At the end of the day it isn't about store traffic on this Black Friday since no one who takes COVID seriously would fight a crowd to get a discounted TV. A lot of the tech upgrade was done due to necessity of WFM and can't wait for the sale. I think as long as the sales numbers are good, no one is missing the crowds this year. "Bust" is pretty much the description of 2020 for many.
  • Posted on: 11/24/2020

    Target CEO points to one-stop shopping as key to chain’s success

    One stop shopping with pharmacy/cleaning plus food items is what drives me to Target right now, especially the downtown location that I can walk to. Great shopping experience inside and well lit and laid out, plus signboards telling you what is out of stock (used to be cleaning supplies, now it is gaming systems, LOL).
  • Posted on: 11/23/2020

    Will home furnishings soon be a ‘digital-first business’?

    I think signature pieces of furniture for living rooms and bedrooms are tough to buy online. Office furniture got a boost from all the work-from-home demand, but I personally won't buy a sofa that will last me 10 years without seeing it in a showroom. Smaller accessories, side tables, and shelves I can see moving a lot online.
  • Posted on: 11/18/2020

    Will Amazon’s new online pharmacy disrupt the U.S. drugstore business?

    It will be a force in the pharmacy business because people with prime membership are always looking for additional value for their annual fees. Especially those who don't have employer sponsored insurance if the price is competitive they will use the service as part of the Prime benefits.
  • Posted on: 11/12/2020

    Will self-driving, electric vehicles power Walmart’s contactless delivery future?

    Only for specific areas, I think. In most high density and suburban areas, I don't see the self-driving vehicles being widespread. Moreover, right now most people are working from home so it makes sense that you can deliver to the door via autonomous delivery, but as people become mobile you still need the human to deliver the package to the front door. And there are enough legal and logistics hurdles for widespread self-driving and drone deliveries to prevent widespread deployment at this time.
  • Posted on: 11/04/2020

    Did Burger King just ask consumers to buy a Big Mac?

    It certainly earns BK some good social media goodwill. I would expect something like this from Wendy's Twitter given they have a free rein on many topics. Good to see Burger King decide to put a little levity and unity in the tough situation everyone's in.
  • Posted on: 10/26/2020

    Where are curbside and BOPIS services falling short?

    I think, besides technology, the other part of BOPIS is the parking lot and people flow. Big format stores like Walmart and Best Buy have their own parking lots and it is easier to reconfigure with dedicated spaces and stack personnel with mobile devices to greet customers upon parking to ensure services and parking compliance. Fast food service drive through would be a great learning for that. For stores that don't have dedicated parking, that becomes an issue for customer service and expectation.
  • Posted on: 10/20/2020

    Albertsons offers a new refrigerated take on store pickup

    Just like any technology, it serves a segment and not a total solution. It isn't a magic bullet and stores have to deal with cleaning for spills and produce dirt buildup. For certain areas, it is a good concept and customer adoption will tell whether it is worthwhile.
  • Posted on: 10/12/2020

    Staples to accept returns from other stores

    Being a returns location and leveraging store footprint that is already committed is fine, I think the key is who Optoro is processing returns for and whether those customers have upsell opportunities for Staples. Given that everyone is working from a home office these days, there may be a better chance that someone coming in for returns may pick up office supplies rather than a new t-shirt. Since there is already a Staples/Optoro business relationship, it isn't a bad extension to try.
  • Posted on: 10/07/2020

    Will a new round of panic buying empty grocery store shelves?

    To a degree, I think that because consumers are stuck at home and they are looking for something to do, shopping for staples seem to become a standing reason to go out. Yes, people are eating in more and consuming more staples, but the empty shelves is also caused by people overstocking at home on long shelf life items like paper towels. I am seeing it in local targets on specific brands, but there are others available in the same category. Limits now are probably not a bad idea to smooth out the supply chain before the holiday season.
  • Posted on: 10/05/2020

    Are employees or execs holding back data-driven cultures?

    The key is trust in the data. I think the newer generation is more accepting to being data driven after seeing the success of analytics and also raised on metrics starting with personal social media (likes, followers, etc) to online shopping/advertising which are obviously data driven. Some execs have the "managing the message" approach to running the business and probably have less trust in data, especially when it goes against previous experiences.
  • Posted on: 09/30/2020

    Is the Halloween retail opportunity becoming less scary?

    I think it depends on the kind of candy. Adults recently have been buying more candy for self indulgence and Halloween is more "I will buy extra candy that I want to eat afterwards and give out the stuff I don't like." I think certain categories like candy corn will decline while chocolates will increase.
  • Posted on: 09/29/2020

    Are Amazon Prime delivery shoppers disrupting Whole Foods’ stores?

    I have noticed in any supermarket I visit there are increased number of Pick and Pack shoppers. I think it is a general phenomena and not just whole foods and Amazon Prime delivery shoppers. Given the number of increased orders and the size of some of the Whole food stores, it is certainly most noticeable. In the store near me, they have reduced the shopping hours to 9:00 a.m. to 1 p.m. and after 1 p.m. it is an online fulfillment center only, and they have the checkin desk for pick and pack shoppers in a separate area of the garage.

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