Blue Martini mixes promotions to customer taste

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Blue Martini mixes promotions to customer taste

Blue Martini Software will today (4 March) unveil Martini Retail, an in-store customer intelligence product that gives retailers the ability to offer personalised promotions to customers at the checkout.

The software lets retailers target promotions based on customer buying habits. Swiping a customer's credit card or a customer signature on an electronic payment device triggers the system.

"We're enabling personalised customer interaction through the point-of-sale through signature capture devices," Chip Overstreet, vice-president of corporate marketing at Blue Martini, said.

Customer buying habits are recorded in an accompanying piece of software, the Blue Martini Customer Engine.

However Jeff Roster, senior analyst for retail at Gartner Dataquest, said how consumers respond to technologies that gauge their buying behaviour remains to be seen.

"Will they see that as a plus or minus, I don't know the answer," Roster said. "I suspect how retailers will use that will be in a way that consumers are going to embrace. I think most customers want to feel special and want to be rewarded for selecting and working with the retailer."

Other new Blue Martini applications being unveiled as part of the Retail announcement include Realtime Offer Delivery, for delivering offers; Market Research, for surveying customer buyer patterns; Clienteling, enabling sales associates to query a customer base or communicate information about upcoming sales; and Inventory Locator, for surveying inventory of other affiliated stores or warehouses.

Previously available Blue Martini applications, such as Gift Registry and E-commerce, are being enhanced to boost information integration.

Blue Martini has plans this quarter to extend support of its technologies to IBM technologies such as the WebSphere Web application server, AIX operating system and DB2 database. Blue Martini currently supports BEA's WebLogic Web server.

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