#dse2012 Scala Emphasizes Advanced Analytics

Gail Chiasson, North American Editor

I don’t know how many people recognized that Scala has made a slight change in its logo recently, adding an upward angled exclamation point.

Palermo Sports the Logo's !

It’s indicative of a new emphasis, going forward, on predictive Advanced Analytics, something that Scala management hopes will distinguish it from the offerings of competitors while, of course, keeping and adding to all the offerings that have made it a major global provider of digital signage and advertising management solutions.

Advanced Analytics helps retailers leverage their own data to know what their customers want to buy before the customers do and encourages them to make purchases through point-of-sale digital signage.

“Advanced analytics is so very applicable to retail,” says Dave Palermo, vice-president global marketing. “Retailers have huge amounts of data, but don’t know how to use it – and don’t know how use it with signage. Simply put, Scala can take a look at their products in combination with weather analysis, current socioeconomics, and other factors to help them make playlists that reach customers at the right time with the right message. It can both help lift sales, promote products and reduce spoilage.”

Scala Advanced Analytics can literally digest millions of data records on sales, products, customer habits, trends, pricing changes, weather, time of day, day of week, season of the year and more.

“This can help with moving products during certain dayparts,” says Palermo. “If it has been a nice weekend and families have been away, chances are they’ll need to come into the store on Sunday night because they need milk for the kids on Monday morning. That could be the right time to promote the slow-moving cookies to go with the milk for a bedtime snack or for the kids’ school lunch. But if there’s been a promotion on cookies recently and a retailer is low on stock, it wouldn’t want to be advertising those cookies on the playlist. Or in certain neighbourhoods, or if the weather has kept people indoors, perhaps other products should be promoted.

“Similarly, if a quick service restaurant has tied into a promotion with a movie and is suddenly running low on the kids’ special tied to the movie characters, it would want to take that offer from its playlist quickly.

“Advanced analytics can also help grocers and QSRs to control losses from product spoilage. It helps feel the daily pulse to monitor playlists. And, of course, can help lift sales.”

This cloud-based application lets retailers leverage their huge amount of data by connecting predictive advanced analytics and in-store advertising to influence buyer behavior. They can target the right message at an individual level based on store-defined business goals using attention-grabbing content through digital displays.

“Scala considers Advanced Analytics as a game-changing application for retailers,” said Tom Nix, Scala CEO. “Powerful Scala digital display content driven by Advanced Analytics can grab customers’ attention, engage them with immediacy and interactivity, and present customers multiple streams of relevant information on one or a series of displays. Advanced Analytics constantly monitors data to suggest changes to messages to match business rules and conditions – and even the individual customer in front of the screen.”

After digesting data records, Scala Advanced Analytics uses predictive analytics to determine the probability of what might happen next in a retail environment based on a retailer’s business rules and goals. It spells out to the retailer the best course of action with digital signage content to achieve the preferred sales outcome.

The application has an automated machine-learning feedback loop that continues to learn about the retailer’s business and customers to optimize business decisions – so the application constantly improves its recommendations.

By understanding a retailer’s business goals and analyzing historic business data and other relevant data streams, Advanced Analytics recommends content for digital point-of-sale displays powered by Scala digital communication software (which supports content creation, management and distribution in digital signage networks). Scala-powered digital displays take data from Advanced Analytics and deliver a wide range of communications options with moving visuals, interactive screens and kiosks that present dynamic messaging and influence buyer behavior.

The Scala Advanced Analytics solution is available immediately and is best-suited for multi-site retailers with large numbers of SKU’s and point-of-sale data.

“We have the ability to customize, to attach to any data source with our stabile platform,” says Palermo. “And it’s all done in real time. This is one of a number of developments we’re working on as Scala moves forward. We’re getting more into mission critical stuff.”

In addition to announcing Advanced Analytics and several new product offering at Digital Signage Expo (with more to come that we know about), Palermo says that the company is currently redoing its web site as it moves forward into the ecosystem where mobile, screens, displays, data and more are coming together.

“It’s all about getting the right message to the right people,” he says. “Like our logo, we’re looking upwards and forward.”

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