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The People: Hany Fam and Gavin Sathianathan
The Idea: Making sense of s-commerce
‘The s-commerce experience is social, mobile and global for today’s digitally enabled consumers,’ says Hany Fam, president of strategic alliances at Mastercard Worldwide. He talks LS:N Global through the payment data company’s new strategic alliance with Facebook, designed to provide solutions linking social commerce, payment and data, launched for retail brands at the recent World Retail Congress.
Top five take-outs
1. Think like the digitally enabled consumer: be social, mobile and global. Learn from organisations such as Facebook and Mastercard about consumer preferences and join the dots to capture intent, shopping interest and to enable a more seamless route to commerce.
2. Use payment data to gather insights across multi-channel platforms. S-commerce is the way consumers connect with their friends and family. Retailers need to do the same.
3. Help consumers to discover new services, products and brands through s-commerce. ‘Some 50% of all online content was discovered through Facebook in 2011,’ says Facebook’s Sathianathan, ‘and the same trend is being seen in the retail space. Consumers are increasingly using Facebook as a platform to advocate new products, celebrate services and complain. The main thing is, they are connecting with their friends and family in real time, on a scale that is driving s-commerce,’ he says.
4. Enable consumers not only to like your products and services, but to explore new emotions to share with their social network. ‘We have opened up the ‘like’ tool on Facebook, with additional read, watch and listen buttons for media partners. Now the same actions are being used in the s-commerce space. Retailers are starting to use want, love, sell and buy buttons. We are structuring these stories on Facebook to be much more meaningful to enable people to express themselves. That is where we see the platform heading,’ says Sathianathan.
5. Open your customer base to other retailers. ‘It is not about putting a ring-fence around your customers, so that no one else can touch them. Now consumers want to see shared retailer experiences. In the social media world that is a profound shift, says Mastercard’s Fam.