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Shoppers incorporate social media commentary and photos into their purchasing decisions, so why not offer the ability to do so right in the store — and larger than life?

TigerLogic, a global provider of data management and application development solutions, offers the Postano platform, which enables in-store displays of curated social media content. In addition, Postano Mobile allows the content to easily be updated from employee mobile devices like smartphones and tablets.

The displays, already in use by TigerLogic customers like Nine West, don’t necessarily resemble a Facebook timeline or Pinterest board; they can incorporate brand elements like fonts, logos and color palettes for a more consistent, polished, modern store design element.

What’s interesting, says Justin Garrity, Postano vice president of product and marketing, is how different retailers are adapting the displays depending on their needs. Some are using them in a campaign-like effort, featuring content supplied by the brand’s own marketing team. Others have incorporated what fans from the community think, placing those posts in the product area. Either way, Garrity says, “all of a sudden, it makes you feel more comfortable as a buyer …. It becomes a visual recommendation engine and leads to more engagement on the sales floor.”

The platform — which includes Postano Events, Postano Retail, Postano Social Hub and Postano Monitoring dashboard capabilities — has been available for roughly 18 months; Postano Mobile has been available since April. Brands may have been attracted to the offering because it was new and fresh, Garrity says, but they’ve since discovered how effective the reporting has been, and how fan engagement has increased. Unofficial customer surveys continue to note how many times customers refer to what they’ve seen on the in-store screens.

Leveraging trends
Garrity believes Postano is an ideal solution for retailers challenged by keeping content fresh, tying online efforts to bricks-and-mortar and quickly leveraging the latest trends. Because the content is curated — and aggregated across Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Vine and other social platforms into one clean view — brands can choose whether they include only positive content or posts that may be less flattering — but authentic.

“If you see a photo or a quote from a customer, treated in a really nice, beautiful way on a big display, that has a big impact on you in the store environment as a consumer,” Garrity says. “It works just as effectively as looking at a product recommendation on a website. It really does bring forward what you love about the brand, and definitely affects purchasing behavior.”

At the same time, he says, the displays can help modernize and bring real-time relevancy to the in-store environment in a way that a traditional video loop, changed out every quarter, might not. Current in-store trends include “cleaning up the retail environment to really put the focus on the product,” Garrity says. “You see a lot more minimal displays, removing a lot of the clutter to make a more elegant experience.” Traditional displays and signage have offered reference points for how various products are being used, but that remains a static experience, he says.

Postano, however, “can convert immediately to follow a trend or hashtag…. The ability to leverage the latest trends happening in social media and bring them into the store environment is a huge win for brands.”