Top 10 Episodes from the
First Year of Spark Plug
Now a Top 25 Podcast
New customer success team member Bridgette Herrera shares her Top 10 favorite episodes from seasons 1 and 2.
When Bridgette Herrera joined our Customer Success team last month, she promptly got to work on her first project: listening to the first 50 episodes of the Spark Plug podcast and proofing the written transcriptions.
Bridgette came to SnowShoe as an experienced customer service professional with more than a decade of experience at retailers such as Kmart, Macy’s, Nordstrom and Sephora. She was eager to listen to the first two seasons of SnowShoe’s podcast as a way of familiarizing herself with today’s biggest conversations around retail and technology, and we were curious to hear which episodes stood out to her given her background in retail.
Here, Bridgette shares, in her own words, her Top 10 episodes from Spark Plug‘s first year – five episodes from Season 1 and five episodes from Season 2.
Bridgette’s Top Five Episodes from Season 1:
- Dr. Joanne Brasch – Episode 012
Dr. Joanne Brasch is a Special Project Manager for the California Product Stewardship Council, which advocates for producer responsibility and product stewardship. In this episode, I learned that product stewardship means taking responsibility for the complete life of a product, and designing and funding an end-of-life program for that product. Listening to this episode caused me to think more about the full life cycle of a product and how we can help contribute to the sustainability of future generations with policies that we implement now.
- Susan Stover – Episode 006
Susan Stover is a leader in the FemTech industry, which is an umbrella term for hardware, software, and scientific procedures geared toward women’s healthcare and pregnancy. Prior to listening to this episode, I didn’t know such a term existed! My favorite part of this episode was when she touched on some of the challenges that FemTech facesm because it made me take a step back and reflect on the necessity of creating space for these types of dialogues about a “taboo” sector of the industry, especially in today’s society.
- Steve Dennis – Episode 014
Steve Dennis is an author with 30+ years of experience as an influential leader in the retail growth industry. This episode is chock-full of prominent insights from Steve. One insight that caught my attention is that while consumers may think that the future of retail is shifting to be more online, it really isn’t. In fact, many well-known brands are continuing to open more brick-and-mortar stores. Steve also discussed the importance of creating human-centered, personal, and memorable experiences, and how independent retailers are often better able to do this than big box stores.
- Shannon Atikinson – Episode 022
Shannon Atikinson is the startup founder of CHNL, a new social media brand with a subscription-based service that delivers highly customized information to consumers. Although I was skeptical at first, by the end of the episode, I got it: Instead of being on an app like Facebook where advertisers power the platform, CHNL is funded by its users, so it only has to answer to its users. In addition, CHNL only uses trusted and verified contributors and sources, which greatly reduces the risk of fake news.
- Tiffany Shi – Episode 024
Tiffany Shi is the Vice President for Product and Growth at ShopShops. ShopShops is a global shopping app that encourages shoppers to “shop global like a local.” Listening to TIffany share about ShopShops’ business model was really engaging. It was my first time hearing about technology that allows viewers to purchase from a live stream in real time. Truth be told, I downloaded the app so that I could experience it first hand. It’s amazing!
Bridgette’s Top Five Episodes from Season 2:
- Bob Phibbs – Episode 028
Bob Phibbs, known as “The Retail Doctor,” is an accomplished leader in retail with over 30 years of experience consulting with retailers. Listening to this episode was really fun, as I definitely share Bob’s passion for retail. In the past, when I’ve told people about my passion for retail, I’ve often been met with responses such as, “What?! Really?! I can’t wait to leave this job!” It was fun to hear that Bob shares my enthusiasm for customer connection in retail.
- Trevor Sumner – Episode 033 Episode 034
Trevor Sumner, named one of Rethink Retail’s Top 100 Retail Influencers for 2021, has been leading the way in in-store product engagement marketing and interactive displays. I hadn’t known that something like this existed, so it was fascinating to hear how his company, Perch, helps retailers market in a fresh new way. Imagine you’re walking in a store and you come across a product that you’re interested in. You pick up a product, click on the kiosk screen, and it starts telling you about that product. I think this sounds so cool.
- Daniel Aizenman – Episode 039
Daniel Aizenman is Senior Principal at Stantec, a global design and delivery firm. He leads his team beginning to end on architecture planning, landscape, interior design, branding, and everything in between to create innovative environments. As someone who loves to shop and has been in retail for many years, I never thought about everything that goes into planning and designing a shopping mall or an arena, so it was so interesting to learn about everything that goes on behind the scenes.
- Paula Thomas – Episode 030
Paula Thomas is an experienced leader in loyalty with more than 20 years of experience in the retail industry. She is an author and has also written an assortment of articles on the topic of global best practices in convenience retail. Coming from the retail side of loyalty programs, it was enthralling for me to learn about the differences between transactional loyalty and emotional loyalty. It’s incredible how in-depth a program can go in order to give the best experience possible for customers.
- Ebere Anokute – Episode 041
Ebere Anokute is not only a real estate market researcher for JLL, he has also contributed to many articles and is a regular on the YouTube show “Everything We Know About Retail.” What I love about this episode is that it makes me think deeper about how real estate relates to retail. He and his team do so much market research before a space is ever even selected or designed. It’s fascinating to learn about all the work that goes into creating and finding retail spaces, and none of the work is ever seen by the customer.
Thank you for sharing your favorite episodes with us, Bridgette! We’re thrilled to have just launched our 50th episode of Spark Plug, and we can’t wait to kick off Season 3 very soon. You can listen to the first two seasons of Spark Plug here.
And be sure to subscribe to hear new conversations with smart people working at the intersection of retail and technology. Spark Plug appears on Apple iTunes, Amazon Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, TuneIn, and Pandora.