In the first of our new Retail Tech Leaders series, where we’ll be catching up with the news and views of the industry’s leading visionaries who are helping to shape and shake up retail, we sat down with Wunderkind’s new General Manager for EMEA, Wulfric Light-Wilkinson, to find out about his take on hyper personalisation in retail, SMS as a channel and what’s in store for 2021.
Light-Wilkinson joined Wunderkind in 2020, bringing with him extensive MarTech and digital marketing experience, having held senior executive and board-level roles at ForwardPMX and Quill Content—as well as advising & investing in fast-growth, scale-up businesses like Ometria (which recently raised a series B of $21m).
Retail Connections (RC): So, give us you elevator pitch and tell us a little bit about Wunderkind – what do you do and who do you work with?
Wufric Light-Wilkinson (WLW): Put simply, Wunderkind helps retailers and brands recognise and identify more people on their site so they can deliver a one-to-one experience based on a shoppers’ intent and buying behaviour on-site. This enables them to generate huge amounts of revenue through automated, high-performing, owned-channel marketing.
We already work with global brands, including Ralph Lauren, Uniqlo, and Sonos, helping them through our Identity Network allows them to market in real-time to people, rather than cookies.
RC: You’re relatively new to Wunderkind, having been appointed as GM late last year – what made you make the move?
WLW: I’ve actually been working behind the scenes as a consultant to Wunderkind for a little while now, so I’m not as new as I seem! There were two key differentiators that reinforced my decision to join Wunderkind.
First, our cutting-edge technology and, second, our unique value proposition. Wunderkind’s technology is a trail blazer, especially given the addition of SMS and SmarterHQ into our arsenal.
Second, the value proposition we bring to the market is bang-on for the next normal. We scale personalised messages with an unprecedented reach and scale to turbocharge revenues for our clients. The team at Wunderkind really understand the value we bring to the eCommerce market as a performance channel, achieving an average of 11-20% uplift in sales for online retailers and brands.
Another thing that made the decision easy for me was the company culture and the growth mindset that is embedded across Wunderkind—it was clear to me at the outset that Wunderkind could go all the way.
RC: Tell me a bit more about the SMS capabilities you mentioned Wunderkind has recently added – what does that mean for the business and how does it enable you to better meet retailers’ digital needs?
WLW: They broaden our capability set, enabling us to provide greater value to our clients across more channels, and increase our ability to scale and personalise our messaging to our clients’ customer bases.
Our revolutionary SMS product allows our clients to deliver relevant and timely messaging on an individual basis to enhance customer experience and drive brand loyalty and engagement.
We’ve also just announced the acquisition of SmarterHQ, which means we can now offer even more granular automated personalisation capabilities across both SMS and email, aggregating data in real-time, thus allowing our clients to pinpoint and target specific customer segments.
RC: Obviously, the year that was 2020 was a bit of a curveball-fest – and not just for retail. What do you think are the biggest opportunities and challenges facing the Wunderkind Team as we look ahead to 2021?
WLW: The opportunities for Wunderkind in Europe are significant. There is huge scope for us to move into new verticals and further into the enterprise sector. We have an amazing team in London that we will leverage to reach out to international corporations with HQs in EMEA. As regards challenges, we need to be adaptive when it comes to selling into different regions with different cultures and different languages.
Another challenge we face is the rapid digital transformation of companies post-COVID, many of them focusing on digital as their primary channel for the first time. But I’m confident the Wunderkind team and our technology will help them grow revenue and maximise their ROI beyond their more traditional channels.
RC: You mentioned COVID-19 changing retailers’ approach to digital – but has the pandemic meant you’ve had to adapt your approach as the new incoming GM of the EMEA office?
WLW: One of the biggest hurdles obviously is that we can’t meet face-to-face at the moment with the team or with clients.
However, we overcame this by overhauling our internal and external communication strategy, finding new ways to engage and motivate the team and our clients – including virtual wine-tastings with clients, team games on Zoom, and round tables with thought leaders from the wider digital community to keep our finger on the pulse.
Retail Connections’ Retail Tech Leaders Series is brought to you in association with Fieldworks, the award-winning retail technology PR and content specialists