GMDC incorporates virtual conferencing element into annual conference
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — The Global Market Development Center on Tuesday announced the introduction of Telepresence service as part of its 42nd GMDC General Merchandise Conference to be held in Orlando, Fla., June 1 to 5. According to the association, the introduction of Telepresence will extend the reach of GMDC’s usual physical meetings to incorporate virtual connections to company headquarters or even more remote locations, such as home offices or those traveling who rely on tablet technology.
Through Telepresence, companies involved in the “pilot sessions” during the conference will experience life-sized participation that “feels real." GMDC’s extensive testing in Telepresence also has revealed new ways to reach out to global connections from the comfort of a home or office. This will be demonstrated during the GM12 Conference at the GMDC Connect Demo Center, which will provide Telepresence training sessions every 30 minutes as a vehicle to introduce members into a virtual meeting environment.
Since Telepresence is being held as a pilot, only select attendees will be directly involved in this year’s Telepresence activities, but GMDC is offering all conference attendees a chance to see this technology first-hand for themselves. During the demonstration sessions, GMDC will be distributing information that provides advice on “Tips for Successful Telepresence."
“By utilizing the powerfully enabling technology that is available today to make this happen, GMDC will be generating an environment that will be much easier and infinitely more cost effective to get the right people seated at the meetings and move business forward,” stated Dave McConnell, president and CEO of GMDC. “We are excited to be able to enhance what has, and continues to be, a highly productive meeting."
Kmart introduces bill-payment service
HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill. — Kmart has introduced a walk-in bill payment service in its stores, the mass merchandise retail chain said Wednesday.
Kmart announced the introduction of the CheckFreePay walk-in bill payment service from Fiserv, which allows customers at all of the chain’s stores to pay bills from more than 3,000 companies, including utility, credit card and auto loan bills, for $1.50 or less per transaction, with cash or a PIN-based debit card.
"We are continuously seeking convenient ways to help customers manage their personal finances," Kmart divisional VP alternative financial services Keith Brand said. "The debut of Kmart’s in-store bill pay program does just that — it gives our customers access to a fast and convenient way to pay bills and manage their finances."
Target to offer guests more rewards via new Shopkick partnership
MINNEAPOLIS — Target has joined the Shopkick program, making it the largest retailer to reward its guests for using the app via their smartphones. Target guests nationwide can earn points for shopping at Target that can be redeemed for a variety of rewards.
"We’ve learned from our guests that theyappreciate being rewarded for doing what they already love to do — shopping at Target," Target VP marketing and guest engagement Bonnie Gross said. "In our test launch, Target guests in seven cities had the opportunity to experience shopkick at Target and we received rave reviews. Now guests nationwide can start earning valuable points just by shopping our stores."
Shopkick is free and available on iPhone and Android devices. When guests walk into their Target store, Shopkick rewards them with points known as “kicks.” Then, as guests shop the store, they have the opportunity to scan products ranging from everyday items like food and cleaning supplies, to specialty products like electronics and toys, for additional kicks.
Kicks can be redeemed for Target gift cards, Facebook credits, dining gift certificates, iTunes downloads, donations to charities, and more. Guests can also receive special in-store deals including coupons and discounts.
"Target is among the most admired retailers in the world. We are honored that Target is expanding the shopkick program nationwide to create deeper connections with their guests," Shopkick chief revenue officer Doug Galen said. "We believe that Shopkick provides a strong complement to Target’s existing loyalty programs and have heard loud and clear from our users that they love Target."