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How Amazon and R/GA Are Elevating Commerce Experiences

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Amazon’s Toni Knowlson and R/GA’s Ciaran Park on designing experiences that matter

How Amazon and R/GA Are Elevating Commerce Experiences
R/GA has released a new podcast with Amazon AUS’s Toni Knowlson and R/GA’s Ciaran Park on designing CX in a post-Covid landscape.

Australia’s and New Zealand’s responses to the global pandemic have been closely watched this year, with Covid-19 accelerating shifts in local business and consumer behaviour "by ten years" said Toni Knowlson. As digital innovation lead at Amazon Web Services Australia and New Zealand, she’s on the forefront of those shifts, with AWS cloud services bringing AI and machine learning-based innovation to businesses and organisations seeking to reimagine their customer experiences.

Using cloud-based and data-driven creative technologies to meet the needs of consumers’ changing behaviours is also top of mind for Ciaran Park, executive technology director at R/GA Australia.

Ciaran, who serves on Snap’s Australian creative council, and colleagues recently launched an adaptive eCommerce offering - piloting an agile approach to designing distributed commerce experiences around specific customer touchpoints. 


On R/GA's latest podcast, Ciaran and Toni share their respective insights about how forward-thinking companies are leaning into Covid-accelerated behaviours and turning them into opportunities for meaningful CX. As their conversation explores, for customer-led organisations, the pivot to remote work and learning has served as a catalyst for digital creativity and unexpected connections to serve shifting consumer needs.

“There's a real, really strong, push to community and community connection because all of a sudden we're not global, we're very local,” said Toni. “So connection to community and wanting experiences in the home” represents a rich opportunity to innovate through technology.

Marketing must adapt or be doomed to fail, Ciaran added. “The traditional ways of putting out campaigns everywhere and hoping that people see an emotional connection” no longer apply. “Customers are going to be in different places now. We need to be where they are.”

With the pandemic heightening expectations for more engaging experiences that solve unmet needs, so too do companies need to become more agile and willing to experiment and deliver more thoughtful, customer-led products and services.

For Amazon Web Services, the need for adaptability is measured with a key performance indicator that AWS calls “time to value - the amount of time that it takes you from having an idea to getting it in the hands of your customer,” Toni said. “Today, agility is the new scale, and speed to market is critical.”

“Speed matters,” Cairan agreed, along with a test-and-learn culture of innovation. “To get ahead of the curve, brands need to start investing in leaner and more modular ways of working, such as using microservice practices, which allows them to adapt and test a lot quicker, and hopefully capitalise on these new behaviours as they're becoming more and more prevalent.”

Identifying key moments in the customer journey to elevate the experience is creating exciting new ways to collaborate and experiment, with Covid as a catalyst for fresh thinking. However, it’s not about innovation for innovation’s sake but about “having a bold vision” for the customer’s sake, Toni pointed out. “When we think about those micro moments, we want to really raise the bar on customer experience,” she observed. “What's the thing that a customer will enjoy so much that it creates a delight and loyalty moment that they'll come back?”

For more of their conversation, including raising the bar on CX, how to foster innovation, and the creative technologies helping design more engaging experiences, check out this podcast in the player above. You can also find this podcast on Spotify, SoundCloud, iHeartRadio and Stitcher as well as here on R/GA's website. 

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Categories: Media and Entertainment, Streaming Services

R/GA New York, Tue, 01 Dec 2020 15:48:36 GMT