CASE STUDY: Staples

Staples Back-to-School

The pandemic overturned 5 months of campaign planning overnight, yet through nimble creative executions and Clinch automation, Staples turned challenges into an opportunity to bring value to their customers. 

CASE STUDY Staples

Staples Back-to-School

The pandemic overturned 5 months of campaign planning overnight, yet through nimble creative executions and Clinch automation, Staples turned challenges into an opportunity to bring value to their customers. 

12 K+
Ad Variations
1079
Retail Locations Served
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Marshall Warkentin

Chief Merchandising and Marketing Officer

“As a key destination for back to school supplies that so many rely on to gear up for the season, we couldn’t ignore our customer’s new reality. We had different messages to share – School goes on. Customers wanted to know what we were doing to keep them healthy and safe in our stores and what products we offer to keep them safe everywhere. Luckily for Staples, our nimble creative team and tech partners worked quickly to develop new, concise assets to get our messaging across. What we ended up with was completely different from what we ever envisioned, but that’s the reality of retail in 2020.”

Situation

When the pandemic restricted in-store shopping for a large fragmented portion of the population, it sparked an instant change in consumer behavior. Every media execution for each of their 1079 retail locations had to be treated as a separate campaign that featured location-specific product availability, price, and fulfillment options, and aligned with changing consumer preferences. This new layer of complexity would have been impossible to manage without data-driven automation from one centralized platform.  

In order to provide valuable, accurate information to their customers, while navigating a shift
in consumer shopping behavior, Staples needed a partner who could:

Automatically render thousands of hyper-personalized brand experiences across video and display

Quickly adapt to short production and activation timelines

Handle a large volume of product and inventory feeds that changed on a daily basis for each of their 1079 retail locations across the United States

Solution

 In today’s reality, digital channels have a growing influence over online and offline purchases, and retailers need to take a more personalized approach to how they communicate with customers. Clinch helped Staples engage their customers via the following initiatives:

Turning national TV assets
into localized, segment-based ads

Linear TV ads are great for Linear TV, but need to be modified to reach lower funnel objectives and capture consumer attention across other digital environments. Clinch’s Video AI Technology transformed Staples’ national TV commercials into dynamic video and display ads that were hyper-personalized to Staples’ target audience of parents and teachers. 

Original TV ads were wrapped with dynamic content that highlighted products, fulfillment options, and special offers specific to each Staples retail location

Ad creatives were formatted for distribution across programmatic display and video environments 

Video Creatives

Featuring Dynamic Content Per Audience

00:00 - 00:02s

Starts with original TV ad

00:03 - 00:10s

Original TV ad untouched, wrapped with dynamic content: highlighting products & location

00:11 - 00:23s

Highlight special offers and A/B test creative elements

00:23 - 00:30s

Original TV ad ending with optional map, address, offer & CTA

Dynamic Creatives

Featuring Dynamic Content Per Audience

Delivering hyper-personalized
brand experiences at scale

Clinch’s AI-driven decision engine seamlessly integrated Staples’ product feeds for each of their 1070 individual retail locations, so that the feature products, promotions, store addresses, and fulfillment options contained in each creative were relevant to the customer viewing the ad.

Clinch’s video AI and ML algorithms automatically rendered updates across all programmatic video and display creative variants in real time, which included:

Daily syncs with each store’s unique inventory feed

Weekly updates on promotions per store that aligned with Staples’ location-specific direct mail campaigns and direct sales circulars

Sophisticated audience segmentation was applied based on Staples’ CRM, and third-party data to ensure maximum relevancy was achieved throughout the campaign.