Under Armour’s digital push continues through slumped financials

Dive Brief:

  • Under Armour is in the midst of shifting from a product-led approach to customer-led as the company focuses on the intersection of consumer products and backend technology, according to Paul Fipps, chief experience officer at Under Armour, while speaking during Sapphire Ventures’ CIO Summit last week. In his current role since February, Fipps joined the company in 2014 and has served in various roles, including SVP of global operations, CIO and chief digital officer.
  • The company is using its cloud data platform to create consumer profiles, called the “focused performer,” which focuses on customers with “a competitive mindset or athletic pursuit,” said Fipps. Under Armour is relying on data pulled from apps in Under Armour’s portfolio, including MapMyFitness, EndoMondo, and MyFitnessPal, to cultivate the profiles. 
  • In July, the company launched its revamped e-commerce platform with a new customer relationship management stack, said Fipps. The e-commerce platform “now aligns with the majority of our global [e-commerce] business on one platform,” the company said in its Q2 2020 earnings.

Dive Insight:

Under Armour is trying to rally after its quarter revenue dipped below $1 billion in Q1, our sister publication Retail Dive reported. This year took a jab in Under Armour’s otherwise historically stable quarterly revenue. 

The company has been undergoing an internal digital revamp for about three years, according to Fipps. But “we’ve been able to accelerate that actually during coronavirus.” 

Among the areas Under Armour is focused on, the company is simplifying the operating model for “accelerating digitization of our go-to-market process,” according to its Q2 filing. 

In addition to the newly aligned e-commerce platform, the company is “working to stand up a CRM program” to increase customer engagement. “If you then think about what we’re doing around CRM and loyalty and how we’re going to be able to tie that into keeping the consumer, the focused performer, engaged with us longer and more often,” said CEO Patrik Frisk, during the Q2 2020 earnings call. 

Under Armour’s digital assets are becoming geared toward how the company speaks to a customer. “We’ve invested deeply in our cloud data platform to build out a very robust and enormous set of profiles of people who are opting in to have conversation engagement with Under Armour,” said Fipps. “That is the basis of how we’re interacting with our customers, whether they’re online or offline.” 

The data cultivation and analysis is a living initiative. It’s “helped us keep this continuous conversation beyond a transactional moment with that consumer so that we are, they see us in different areas and different parts of that journey that they’re all working on,” said Fipps. 

Finding out how Under Armour can combine its digital services and products with backend technology and where it makes the most sense will contribute to retail’s push for personalization. “For us, it’s really thinking about a deeper dive into real artificial intelligence,” said Fipps. 

With emerging technologies, “it’s never just one,” Fipps said. “It’s the combination as these things converge to give us all kinds of capabilities that just were not possible even a couple of years ago.” 

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