The RSPA RetailNOW Roundup: Bourbon, Business & Retail Technology
By: Jason Rager
Blame it on our roots… while we didn’t ruin any black-tie affairs, COACT did show up ready to learn and reconnect at RSPA’s flagship show, RetailNOW 2018.
Held from August 5-8 at the Gaylord Opryland Resort and Convention Center in Nashville, Tennessee, COACT joined hundreds of exhibitors, attendees, and friends for one of the technology industry’s fun annual events.
COACT’s RetailNOW Experiences
We always enjoy the RetailNOW show as new technologies and solutions are at the forefront of the exhibits and in the learning sessions. Our client base is well represented here, so it’s always a lot of fun to get together again while learning about new product lines, bundles, and ideas! (Nashville is also a favorite as well because we’re both bourbon fans.)
COACT supports several client efforts in the technology vertical. We love supporting manufacturer efforts on VAR attraction, as well as supporting new product promotion and awareness building.
Essentially, the opportunity to support retention/expansion efforts and provide marketing horsepower (ha, ha – no pun intended, Nashville) drives our strategies along the way.
The RetailNOW show promotes a casual, business-friendly way to see what is new in the market and spend time building stronger platforms and relationships with our partners.
New Market Trends & Technologies We Saw
This year, we – that is, Jason Rager, a show veteran, and Elizabeth Murawski, a first timer – took on the exhibit floor to spend time learning about market trends and support to clients.
Like every year, VAR players, ISV providers, and manufacturers are developing creative ways to partner and promote products and solutions to build stronger businesses in hospitality, restaurant, retail, and grocery/c-store verticals.
Especially visible this year was the importance of ease of deployment. The race is on to simplify deployment of new technologies – particularly with EMV and the Internet of Things (IoT). Moreover, the IoT discussion is translating not only to card-reading technology and printers, but spilling over into how payment processors and software solutions are going to market.
How to be Successful Post-RetailNOW
The interconnectedness of the industry is captivating, and how people access, engage, and use tools and trends has evolved. Change can be disruptive, but by being able to pivot strategy and adapt accordingly, COACT helps our clients shift priorities and develop long-term brand connections and solutions to our clients.
New knowledge returns to the COACT office (as well as swag for the team) and allows our teams to do better, stronger work for our clients in the market and put more giddy-up in updated value propositions for our client work.
It was a packed agenda, but the team is looking forward to renewed conversations with campaign directors and looking ahead to NRF!
*Co-written by Elizabeth Murawski