New rules for the retail?
Traditionally when you're looking for an item in a category, you have to push the door, enter in the store and find the category shelve or run the retailer's App on your device and find the category in the menus.
Traditionally when you've got a question, you enter in the store, find a salesman and ask, or in the digital side, you launch the retailer's App, find the search button and enter your question.
Same approach for physical or for digital (iPhone, Android, Win7, ….)
It's very strange that the digital before Win8/RT/Phone has not to taken his emancipation from the "physical" patterns.
Effectively as customer, even if you visit every day the store, you have to support the "constraint" of the retailer main entrance by the store or the App. Every visitor have to go through the main entrance until today to get an item or a service.
Windows 8/RT/Phone is changing the deal!
Thanks to the ability to pin the category on the front of your device, then the retailers can make available a direct access to their categories and can propose a targeted advertising push.
Thanks to Charm, customer can get a direct access to search service provide by retailer without to have to enter in the App before. Then Retailer are at the same distance from customer than generic search engine ( amazon, google, bing, …) but is able to provide a contextual answer thanks to the knowledge of customer if he's identified by Microsoft ID, and thanks to the data shared by the device.
In term of impact on the marketing organization, it's a real revolution. Marketing rules developed for mass marketing are no longer accurate. Marketing has to leave the engagement choice to the customer and put the marketing by category before the global or brand marketing.
Regarding search, thanks to charm, now the brand can expose their services out of the their stores … and then the search and the discovery must come back a key element of their strategy.
Customer has the power now. If the customer wants go directly in the category, retailers couldn't make it enter in the traditional path going through the main entrance. And if he wants to search without enter in the store or in the App, or won't use generic search engine, you must be ready.
Are your CMOs ready? Are you ready to work with in this new landscape? It's the new commerce and Microsoft enables it.