What makes remarkable retail businesses

Retail Gets Real Episode 303: Retail consultant and author Steve Dennis discusses how omnichannel is giving way to hybridization
Sheryll Poe
NRF Contributor

In a world where everything is available everywhere, at any time, being very good is no longer good enough, according to retail consultant, podcaster and best-selling author Steve Dennis.

“You have to be truly remarkable. And, by remarkable, I mean kind of the common thing people think about it — different, unique, special,” Dennis, the founder of SageBerry Consulting, says on this episode of Retail Gets Real.

“But in particular … you literally have to give people something to talk about, to remark upon. That’s how you build a strong emotional connection with a customer.”

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Dennis’ new book, “Remarkable Retail: How to Win and Keep Customers in the Age of Digital Disruption,” presents case studies of retail innovation over the last 30 years. One of the book’s major tenets is the dissolution of omnichannel. “There are very few cases where that one-size-fits-all, kind of spreading the peanut butter, makes sense,” he says. “I think the successful strategy is about showing up where it really matters in remarkable ways.”

He says retailers should focus on harmonization — creating a seamless retail experience, and hybridization — blending the digital and physical worlds to serve customers how they want to be served.

“The overriding issue is to really be channel-agnostic and think about it all as one branded experience,” he says. “I see plenty of retailers, that really have a compelling value proposition, that are investing in both their physical and digital capabilities, that are pursuing this more-hybrid approach.”

Listen to the full podcast to hear more about what remarkable retail looks like, Dennis’s career and what’s impacting the state of retail in 2023.


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