NRF 2024 Day 2

A little extra “Magic” at NRF 2024

January 16, 2024

It’s the final buzzer for NRF Day 2- another slam dunk. To tip off the second day (and MLK Day!), the Magic Johnson gave an inspirational keynote about success (and it was exactly as amazing as you think it is).

The best part is that the day only got better from there! It was an even bigger day full of amazing conference sessions, incredible conversations, and catching up with friends in the industry.

Here were our favorite takeaways:


First and Foremost, Employees 

“No one gets here by themselves,” says Matthew Shay, President and CEO of the National Retail Federation. “The last thing you did by yourself was hire an employee and then you’ve got a team”

A recurring theme of NRF 2024 is that, in the midst of constantly increasing complexities, the biggest investment of any retailer is its people. 

When it comes to a brand’s org chart, “The further you get away from [the associates], the more you should listen and the less you should talk,” says Edward W. Stack, Executive Chairman of DICK’S Sporting Goods.

AI (obviously)

AI is making headline news, but with all of the buzz, it can be hard to separate fact from fiction. Melissa Wong, CEO and Co-founder of Zipline, and Sanish Mondkar, CEO and founder of Legion, sat down to share important truths about the impact of AI on Retail teams and dispel some prevailing myths.

Melissa also shared a sneak peek at Zipline’s new intelligent platform that instantly responds to store associates’ questions, saving them time and enabling more efficient work. With AI, we empower retail employees, streamline information retrieval, and enhance customer experiences.

Learn more about how your stores’ new AI companion can improve in-store execution, and increase time savings with personalized responses.

AEO is winning with Culture

Marc Lambo, VP Associate Experience & Customer Care at AEO joined Melissa virtually for today’s Big Ideas session! On screen, he shared how he’s helped create a resilient brand culture, ensuring every team member is aligned with the brand’s core values.

At American Eagle Outfitters, Marc recognizes the importance of catering to both internal (store associates) and external (shopper) customers. That’s why the team set out to create a convergence of associate experience and customer care, underscoring the criticality of attentively listening to customers and basing decisions on their feedback. 

“When we set out to accomplish this, then the platform we were currently on could not meet those expectations,” recalls Marc. “They couldn’t meet the vision that I had, that my team had, my head of stores had. We need a solution that gathers, distributes, and targets information in the right way to support holistic learning. But more importantly, we needed to work with a team, a team of people who could see the vision that we all could see to impact positive change. Enter Zipline.”

As a technology company, Zipline specializes in streamlining communication and improving store operations. Together, we’ve tackled the challenges of scaling communication on a global scale, highlighting the need for flexibility and consistency in communication strategies. The resulting strategy hinges on evolving communication and technology tools to build lasting brand loyalty.At the end of the day, this partnership is a testament to customer-centric decision-making, the power of effective communication, and the role of technology in modern retail. When it comes to building and maintaining an in-store culture, “it’s not just about scalability,” says Marc. “It’s about flexibility.”

Overall, the conversation reinforced the importance of effective communication, meeting people where they are, and utilizing technology as a catalyst to enrich the customer experience… ultimately, forging a powerful and authentic customer experience. 

Coming up tomorrow…

Your perfect final day at NRF is unfolding! Here’s what you’ll do: 

🥯Start your day off right and grab an authentic New York bagel from the famous Tompkins Square Bagels – toasted and schmeared to your liking at booth #5157.

🎤 Catch our Big Ideas Session at  10:15am on Level 3, Stage 3. My good friends and retail experts from PacSun, TravisMathew, & Visionworks will talk about the simple ways they foster open two-way communication, promote healthy competition, and maintain brand consistency across various store locations.

🛋️ Afterwards, come by the Zipline booth (#5157) to chat with the panelists in person! 

👋 See you at Booth #5157

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