PROFILE

Rich Kizer

Principal, KIZER & BENDER Speaking
Rich Kizer is a speaker, retail strategist, author, and consultant. Rich and his business partner, Georganne Bender, have helped thousands of businesses in the retail, creative, restaurant, healthcare, deathcare, hospitality, collegiate, toy, travel, tanning, beauty, tech, auto, sales and service industries grow their sales since 1990. KIZER & BENDER are listed among the Top 40 Omnichannel Retail Influencers, Top 100 Retail Influencers, and the Top Retail Industry Experts to Follow on Social Media. They made Meetings & Conventions Magazine's list of Meeting Planners Favorite Keynote Speakers and have been named two of Retailing's Most Influential People. Their award-winning Retail Adventures Blog is consistently listed among important retail and small business blogs. As global retail thought leaders, KIZER & BENDER serve as BrainTrust panelists for RetailWire, and are partners and emcees for the popular Independent Retailer Conference held twice a year in Las Vegas. Rich and Georganne are experts on generational diversity, consumer trends, marketing and promotion, and everything retail. As consumer anthropologists they stalk and study that most elusive of mammals: Today's consumer. Each year KIZER & BENDER host consumer focus groups, one-on-one interviews, and intensive on-site studies. The result of their research is literally straight from the mouth of the consumer: solid ground level intelligence you can use to better serve your own customers. KIZER & BENDER are married, just not to each other. 2022 marks their 32nd anniversary as a speaking team.
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  • Posted on: 06/24/2022

    Is the metaverse opportunity getting any clearer?

    It will take a long time, a lot of research, and a whole lot of money to spend for this to land on commerce's front doorstep.
  • Posted on: 06/22/2022

    Will Deal Days help Target clear its inventory?

    My belief is that fireworks will occur. It depends on product offerings, but this is going to be over the top because everyone is hungry.
  • Posted on: 06/22/2022

    Study: Flexible scheduling challenges are keeping store managers up at night

    Managers must speak to upper management. If a new strategy is what you need to improve the issue, get together with management and ask them to come to the floor and see first hand the challenge. I really don't think flexibility is going to go away. Be prepared.
  • Posted on: 06/21/2022

    Uber Eats ships big city meals nationwide

    Really? Packaged by the restaurant and shipped via FedEx? I hope they are trained well to preserve presentation Here's my idea: you guys try it first, then let me know!
  • Posted on: 06/21/2022

    Are retailers and consumers misaligned on trust?

    Incredible! Asking consumers what builds corporate trust, the top three answers were: affordable products/services, 34 percent; treats employees well, 33 percent; and variety of high-quality products/services. Good corporate citizenship ranked sixth, at 20 percent. This trust issue is simple to uncover and fix. Executives: get on the floor and ask questions of customers and listen very carefully to be greatly surprised. Secondly, work closer with associates. The floor is where the action is and where many of the real problems are discovered and profits are produced. Certainly your unique media presences are incredibly important as well. You have a tough job!
  • Posted on: 06/17/2022

    Does Amazon need a great Prime Day now more than ever?

    PROMOTION! Years ago, there was a promotion on the Chicago television networks. The spot simply featured a picture of a mountain. And a booming voice would announce this message: "I'M BRINGING A MOUNTAIN TO CHICAGO." That was it. It drove people nuts. Everyone was talking about it. And a month or so later, "Mountain Grown" Folgers coffee entered the Chicago market. I think Amazon needs to build an event of teasers and hints, that all their talented marketing experts can generate to get people jazzed and talking about it. I know they do great loss leaders, and that is incredibly important. But this big event needs big promotion to stand out and attain sales goals.
  • Posted on: 06/16/2022

    Will country star Miranda Lambert raise Walmart’s profit margins?

    Gosh, I understand trying the Lambert line in the stores, but I'm not a believer that that celebrity apparel sales have the push/pull to increase initial margins for the stores. Obviously there are the exceptions in athletic apparel -- in the area of licensed fashion, certain athletic products can create firestorm demands. But I think celebrity apparel of this category is risky -- and with few exceptions.
  • Posted on: 06/14/2022

    Is Walmart about to launch a new British invasion?

    I don't completely get Walmart's logic on this one. I think that when things go askew in retail, retailers go hunting for ideas that might solve problems. And it might be a brilliant move.
  • Posted on: 06/13/2022

    Food prices are going up, up, up. Inflation is tough, tough, tough.

    Groceries are tough for many people today. One thing this escalation of prices has done is create super shoppers. At a dinner engagement I listened to conversations about how “shameful” prices in stores have become. I was amazed how accurate they were. Price issues are creating “expert supersmart” grocery shoppers. The conversations at this dinner engagement were amazing and scary. We’re creating new, smart customers!
  • Posted on: 06/13/2022

    Should retailers charge for curbside pickup?

    This is not a hard question. You burn the gas and perhaps lose some time or have it delivered. Stew Leonard's mantra: you're busy, let us help.
  • Posted on: 06/09/2022

    Is Franchise Group’s plan for Kohl’s a retail disaster in the making?

    Gulp! This one scares me.
  • Posted on: 06/09/2022

    Should retail leases include clauses covering future shutdowns?

    Retail landlords are sometimes looked upon as the bad guys. In all cases, they want their tenants to win. Getting an abatement of rent is probably the hardest strategy, as most retailers are at a loss as to when they will start again. Landlords like to get dates. The percentage rent clause is one of the most popular: with X percentage of cash sales and a lower percentage of credit sales. This is probably the most used language I have heard during COVID-19.
  • Posted on: 06/08/2022

    Is an urban retail recovery underway?

    Foot traffic is returning -- I certainly agree with that. One thing that I think is critical is what the new retail experience will be at the "old" store that the customer has not yet visited. I would hope that the new experiences they receive would be a changed store with perhaps new colors, fixtures (at least moved around) and a floor that encourages them to see all the "new". Whatever a retailer does as customers return to the places they once visited, I hope it will be a perceived as a "new" store experience. If customers walk in and see the same old, same old, they won't be very excited about the business or returning to it again.
  • Posted on: 06/08/2022

    Should retailers prepare to serve customers in ‘post-car’ suburbs?

    Haven't many retail venues around the country sprouted up like this, in the form of "village life" complexes, in the last last 10 to 15 years? The success of these ventures has proven that they work, given the right mix of retail content. Yes, some have condos surrounding the venture, but I haven't seen where those living in close proximity alone support enough traffic for all retailers in the compound. It has to have food and entertainment to become magnetic enough to create constant foot steps.
  • Posted on: 06/07/2022

    Target isn’t wasting any time in cutting the glut from its inventory

    The old retail adage is: Inventory is not like wine, it doesn't get better with time. We all know that. Smart move. Target, a spectacular retailer, is apt to teach some very important lessons to other retailers. Target knows and understands the impact of allowing old or and undesired products to occupy space and capital. I used to call it "skinning the cat" at times -- it is not so pleasant, but warranted. .

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