January 15, 2018
Elsom Eldridge, National Sales and Marketing Director at Boy Scouts of America, Supply Group, joined Magento’s VP of Strategy, Peter Sheldon, onstage at NRF 2018 to share the organization’s growth goals and digital transformation tactics.
“Digital just consumes the world,” Eldridge noted. “We’ve had to make adaptations as well. One thing you’ll find, with a 108-year-old organization, change can be slow. People are accustomed to current processes, paperwork and handbooks. But we started making changes.”
Core organizational documentation, including merit badge pamphlets, has been revamped for versioning on a digital app. The official Scout Book also is offered on a new app—taking away all manual paperwork a troop leader had to do to track advancements. This also integrates automatically with online advancement program.
Eldridge and team are undergoing significant change with a customer-centric approach to their web and in-store experiences. He reviewed the following digital transformation goals during NRF’s Big Show today in NYC:
1. Enable Mobile-First Shopping
Focused on creating a frictionless, user-friendly experience, BSA has prioritized mobile responsiveness. A majority (67%) of the organization’s email campaigns are opened on a mobile device. Responsiveness is critical as a majority of orders occur in on-the-go scenarios (outdoors, onsite). “Most of our counselors don’t have Wifi, just cellular access, so it’s critical that we offer capabilities to navigate the catalog and order quickly, online, wherever they may be.”
2. Offer Seamless Buying Experiences
Focused on supporting the primary persona, 25-35-year-old Mothers purchasing items for their sons joining the scouts, the BSA website offers a ‘Uniform Builder’ tool that simplifies the uniform purchase process. Shoppers can select from pieces suitable for their scouts based on a series of guided questions to appropriately guide their purchase.
3. Surface the Voice of the Customer
The BSA organization is focused on harvesting the power of user-generated content (UGC) to support their target shopper signing her child up for scouting. The company curates ratings and reviews, as well as items other shoppers are currently viewing, to create more streamlined experiences online.
What’s on the Roadmap?
BSA is moving its legacy paper processes online to digitize and streamline the experience for new members and their families. In 2018 the organization also will expand its family scouting initiatives by offering girls the opportunity to join. This initiative, Eldridge noted, creates additional ramifications for an expanded product catalog. Family Scouting in cub scouts kicked off in 2018 starting this January with 145 councils, and the full 276 to be rolled out in August.