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One-Minute MarketerAmazon Continues to Innovate in a Traditional Way

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Amazon Continues to Innovate in a Traditional Way

The headlines about Sears and K-Mart were not very positive—closing stores all across the country. Yet one of the most innovative online retailers is planning on upping its physical presence.Amazon Books in Seattle's University Village The First Physical Store

Amazon hopes to have 100 pop-up stores by the end of 2017. These will be Apple-esque stores where people can experience various devices, including the Echo, FireTV, Fire Tablets, Dash Buttons and Kindle readers. But that is not the only physical store Amazon is toying with: Amazon has test bookstores and is now testing grocery stores without lines or checkout counters (sensors track groceries as shoppers take them from the shelf). If the grocery store tests are successful, the company told the Wall Street Journal it would open more than 2,000 grocery stores. Add that to the drone delivery tests in London, plus the blimp warehouse idea, and you have a disrupter ready to change the landscape of brick-and-mortar retailers far and wide.

Many believe Amazon is doing this just to disrupt the retail industry, but you can see that user experience is as the heart of this change. Amazon has identified that the No. 1 poor experience in a grocery store is the checkout line. Other stores have played with self-checkout, but that offers other frustrations to shoppers. So, Amazon starts with designing stores without a checkout line. It reduces labor costs, but it makes the shopping experience quicker and more enjoyable.

Just like web design, user experience is taking center stage for all, not just in the digital world.

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Mark wrote his first direct-mail fundraising letter in 1981 for the University of Iowa Center for Advancement. The effort raised a few million dollars in undiscovered wills and legacy gifts. From that day forward Mark discovered a love of the big idea that moves the needle. After 12 years at KWWL, Mark became a business owner as a co-founder of ME&V — rebranded as AMPERAGE in 2015. After 25 years of leading creative teams in video production, graphic design, PR, writing and web development, Mark transitioned out of ownership in 2021. Today he serves in an employee role as special projects consultant. He is creatively ambidextrous — son of an artist and engineer — and famous for distilling complex ideas down to a few words and a few visuals. Mark is a writer. When he found that many nonprofits struggled with complex branding puzzles, he wrote the book, “NonProfit-NonMarketing .” He also wrote a novel called “Reenactment.” Mark is an active blogger OneMinuteMarketer® with nearly 1,000 readers each week on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter. One of his most popular YouTube videos is on “How to Look Good on Zoom.” One of Mark’s fondest business memories was being named to INC 500 two times and attending the INC 500 conference with other winners. Mark is considered by some a Civil War expert (and that explains his novel). Mark also served as an adjunct professor in the business and in the communications departments at Wartburg College. Mark is a graduate of the University of Iowa and is currently vice president of the University of Iowa Journalism and Mass Communications Advisory Board. Mark is married to state Sen. Liz Mathis, and the two love to travel, even when it means being trapped by a volcano in the Czech Republic for three weeks.