This is Part 2 in a series about how to begin, build and deploy a successful digital merchandising project. Subsequent posts will address such topics as software development, design and fabrication, and field services.
Whenever you're about to leverage a kiosk solution, it's essential to assemble a seasoned, qualified team to make your implementation a success. You'll want to thoroughly vet each individual provider, and you'll need a group that has all the necessary skills and works collaboratively to make your kiosk solution effective.
Deploying, implementing and managing a kiosk solution is more complex than it seems at first glance. Typically, one individual provider does not supply the complete arsenal of services necessary to complete a digital merchandising project. Success requires multiple, dedicated groups, covering various aspects of the project such as hardware, front-end software development/user interface, back-end/remote management, enclosure design, and field services.
Pulling together the right team can be hard work. The first step in the right direction involves selecting the vendor who will lead the project and will oversee all of the other groups. You'll want one company who will serve as your advocate through the entire process.
Choose your lead vendor wisely. You'll trust them to ensure everything is running smoothly with your project. Here are the top three traits you'll want in your lead vendor:
The vendor you select needs to have good connections in the business. Knowing the right people is half of the battle. You'll pick one point person who offers a stable, existing network of providers who have a history of working well together. This ensures that communication issues are limited and that you are already working with a team of strong, established relationships.
Your lead vendor should also be adaptive enough to get access to any specialized support your project may need. If for some reason, they don't have exactly what you need in their current team, they should be versatile enough to find your ideal resource and bring them on to the project quickly and easily.
At the beginning, you'll want to vet their existing teams. Your lead vendor should willingly answer all of your questions regarding who they work with, why they partner with them, and how they pick their team. You want a vendor that you feel comfortable approaching with any concerns you have regarding your project.
You should feel comfortable asking, "How much is this going to cost?" Your lead vendor should always be transparent with their cost structure and willing to break it down for you as necessary. This way you'll know exactly what you're paying for and where the costs are coming from.
You want someone who you can trust to deliver. Ask yourself, does the lead vendor have a proven track record? Have you seen examples of their work? Who have their clients been? Do your colleagues have any previous experience with them? Are they willing to provide testimonials or recommendations?
During the project, you'll want one person to call to get the details about your project. You'll need a reliable contact that you can check in with at anytime to get all the details about what's happening with your project.
Implementing a kiosk solution requires the work of multiple, qualified teams. When you select the right lead vendor, you'll reduce hiccups and gain satisfaction in the success of your program.
Craig Martin has over 15 years of experience providing Fortune 500 brands and retailers with innovative digital merchandising solutions. He founded Reality Interactive, LLC in 2004. Prior to that, he held senior business development positions at Media Right and Netkey. Clients over the years include BMW, Callaway Golf, PepsiCo, Bose, Lego, Leapfrog and others.