Interview: Stephen Mohl, Strategic Partnerships Europe, Roct

We recently had the opportunity to attend a Shoptalk event. At this event, we interacted with experts from the e-commerce and digital world. In particular, we were able to speak with Stephen Mohl, Europe Director of Strategic Partnerships at Rokt.

Can you tell us about your background and how you became European Director of Strategic Partnerships at Rokt?

Having worked in the e-commerce industry for 10+ years in both New York and Paris, my experience allows me to help a high-growth US company develop its operations in Europe. Working with companies like Veepee and Amex, as well as smaller startups, has shaped my ability to work in fast-paced, goal-oriented, and disruptive environments. My team and I mainly focus on the French and Southern European markets, while our colleagues cover the UK and Germany.

What do you think are the biggest challenges facing e-commerce companies today and how is Rokt helping them overcome these challenges?

The rise of e-commerce has been driven by the pandemic and a strong economic cycle, but that trend is starting to reverse, and that means competition is about to get fiercer. This will put more pressure on companies and force some out of the market. Those who survive and thrive must ensure that their economy is better than their peers, and to achieve this, they must optimize their e-commerce standards. One of the biggest drivers here is compliance, ensuring accurate customer engagement and time is used in the most valuable way. Companies that crack this will have an advantage over their competitors.

Retailers need to show shoppers that they remember and value who they are and what their preferences are. They need to provide consumers with highly engaging and relevant shopping experiences across every sales channel to delight customers and keep them coming back. With the demise of third-party cookies and the changing regulatory landscape, retailers that are behind the curve in understanding and using their own first-party data will face significant challenges. Every company needs to rethink its personalization strategy to meet customer needs while keeping up with the ever-evolving regulations. Those who rely on third-party cookies should switch to a first-party approach or work with a technology provider to ensure they offer one. a more relevant customer shopping experience.

Can you give an example of a particularly successful partnership that Rokt has formed in Europe and what made it successful?

Every e-commerce transaction involves multiple parties, including the merchant, shippers, payment providers, insurers, and many others, working together to achieve a successful outcome. It’s all connected. With recent changes in privacy and tracking regulations and policies, businesses need to be able to leverage their first-party data, and that requires a trusted intermediary like Rokt. E-commerce businesses that partner with Rokt can leverage their first-party data to offer a competitive solution to large, dominant digital advertising players.

Rokt can deliver incredible results for both e-commerce sites and advertisers, delivering relevance at the time of transaction, such as incremental revenue of over €1.5 million for every 10 million transactions and eCPM over €150. Our technology helps solve the paradox of choice for consumers, who are usually overwhelmed with so many random offers that it is difficult for them to choose one. Rokt’s advanced machine learning, continuously learning from over 5 billion transactions to date, knows exactly what non-endemic, premium brand offers are best to show each customer, creating a better customer experience overall.

One such case was ManoMano, Europe’s largest marketplace for DIY, gardening and home improvement products and services, is one of our key new clients.

  • ManoMano was looking for strong predictable revenue without compromising customer experience
  • There are 3 key factors to this successful partnership
  1. Overall focus on Manomano’s customer experience. Rokt enables ManoMano to show only what is relevant to each of its customers on a 1:1 basis
  2. Diversifying and accelerating ManoMano’s media revenue strategies and channels on a page that went unused, the order confirmation page.
  3. High-quality non-endemic offers from our premium advertisers that ManoMano was able to tap into without directly building those relationships.

In short, e-commerce will become more relevant and more connected. With e-commerce expected to grow at 15% per year over the next four years, customers expect more relevant and customized experiences every time they shop, wherever they are. Customers already reward retailers that make transactions more relevant today, but in the future customers will actively switch to where they feel remembered and valued.

We’re already seeing retailers increasingly looking to unlock more of their assets, and their customer interactions are a huge asset in e-commerce. With the rise of e-commerce, tightening data privacy laws from companies like Apple, and the release of donuts, first-party data has become a goldmine for improving customer compliance and the economics of e-commerce. This becomes even more powerful when you are able to collaborate smarter with your partners because your customers are often their customers too. This interconnected nature of e-commerce, where your products and services can be sold through multiple channels and you need other partners (such as payment companies) to be successful in e-commerce, is only going to get stronger. Brands’ retail media strategies will continue to drive best-in-class experiences, but more and more brands will realize that offering an optimized, relevant transactional experience can unlock significant potential.

What excites you most about the future of e-commerce and how do you see Rokt contributing to that future?

Companies are increasingly creating their own retail media networks, but they support browsing, meaning they only add value during the shopping journey. This means retailers are missing out on a huge opportunity, particularly in the cart and on the checkout page. Rokt’s technology is targeted for the moment of the transaction to unleash the potential of that moment, doubling the economics of the e-commerce transaction.

Also, Rokt’s algorithm can determine the best message to show individual consumers, from cross-selling and upselling to loyalty program offers and third-party offers on the confirmation page. The opportunity is huge and Rokt ensures that every e-commerce transaction is both highly relevant to the consumer and delivers maximum value for brands.

It’s about Shoptalk, what do you think of this edition and have you participated in the previous ones?

I attended Shoptalk London last year and found this edition much richer, especially for the connections I made. Last year’s Shoptalk was on the tail end of Covid as many countries are still implementing restrictions along with some strikes, which I think resulted in fewer people being able to attend than planned. The turnout was great this year, with many familiar faces at the event and many new connections made through the opportunity to meet. It was a great opportunity to rekindle some conversations and start some fantastic new ones, all in sunny Barcelona with some great speakers and fantastic organization from the Shoptalk team.

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