Chicago Tech Leaders On How They Evolved Their Businesses, Digitally

by Alton Zenon III
November 15, 2019

What does a digital transformation look like? 

In a delicious example, Domino’s pizza evolved their online platform, making it possible for consumers to order food from smart TVs, Apple Watches and even Twitter. The digital consultancy agency Deloitte created a client-aiding, internal think tank dubbed Deloitte Digital Today. It functions as a collective of technical, digital and creative specialists within the company that comes together to help clients plan and implement new strategies and solutions for their business. 

Chicago companies are upgrading their capabilities as well. Tribune Publishing is shifting from an ad-focused selling solution to one based on marketing partnerships, while Moda Operandi is baking artificial intelligence into their technology offerings. Leaders from both companies gave us a behind-the-scenes tour of their most recent transformations and the impact they've had on business. 

 

Tribune Publishing team in group photo
Tribune Publishing

Tribune Publishing operates a portfolio of media companies across the country that partner with marketers to get their products and services promoted to consumers. 

VP of Strategic Marketing Mark Rose said shifting to a sales strategy that takes a partnership-based approach has changed the way account executives at Tribune approach their work.

 

What’s an example of a recent digital transformation your company underwent, and what factors led to that shift? 

Media companies’ traditional model of selling audience and reach no longer works. And while digital media has enabled a focus on attributable results, marketers mostly work with vendors selling a single product. The number of vendors out there is daunting. 

To stand out in this environment, we transformed our sales organizations from selling ads to partnering around marketing solutions. This means training our account executives around a client-centric sales process and using specialists to provide digital expertise that clients may lack. Our approach is amplified even further by building industry-strategy chops so that we can help businesses chart their course in today’s chaotic marketplace.

Fulfillment is now a strategic capability instead of simply a cost of doing business.”

 

How has this digital transformation impacted the company’s client-facing or internal operations? 

Historically, media sellers closed a deal with a signed insertion order. In today’s world, that order simply means the beginning of the campaign. 

We optimize campaigns throughout their duration to ensure we’re on track. This shines a spotlight on the early parts of the sales process to ensure that we understand the client’s goals and how they measure success. This model has a profound effect on our organizational structure, meaning fulfillment is now a strategic capability instead of simply a cost of doing business. Sellers have a vested interest in ensuring our campaigns deliver as designed. 

 

Moda Operandi team working
Moda Operandi

Moda Operandi’s CTO Arpan Nanavati said the fashion discovery platform’s shopper-facing functionalities got a recent upgrade with the integration of AI.

Nanavati said the tech is being used to determine everything from price markdowns to new design trends to specific items that buyers might like to see most, algorithmically. 

 

What’s an example of a recent digital transformation your company underwent, and what factors led to that shift? 

We’ve implemented AI in operations across the organization as a way to supplement our team’s expertise and human touch, specifically in our buying, merchandising and client relations teams. This integration allows our buyers to more deeply analyze fashion trends like colors, shapes and textures on a macro level based on customer intents.

We’ve implemented AI in operations across the organization...”

 

How has this digital transformation impacted the way you do business, interact with your customers, hire, etc.?

Our personal stylist systems incorporate AI and algorithms to forecast client behavior, allowing them to better predict peaks and valleys in client shopping patterns and fashion graphs to recommend pieces to complete the look. 

New AI systems also give our merchandising teams processes and automated algorithms to identify and deploy markdown strategy across prices, categories and specific units.

 

Jobs from companies in this blog51 open jobs
All Jobs
Finance
Data + Analytics
Design + UX
Dev + Engineer
HR
Marketing
Product
Sales
Content
Sales
new
Tribune Publishing
Chicago
Developer
new
Moda Operandi
Chicago
Data + Analytics
new
Moda Operandi
Chicago
Product
new
Moda Operandi
Chicago
Developer
new
Moda Operandi
Chicago
Developer
new
Moda Operandi
Chicago
Developer
new
Moda Operandi
Chicago
Developer
new
Moda Operandi
Chicago
Developer
new
Moda Operandi
Chicago
Developer
new
Moda Operandi
Chicago
Developer
new
Moda Operandi
Chicago
Developer
new
Moda Operandi
Chicago
Developer
new
Moda Operandi
Chicago
Developer
new
Moda Operandi
Chicago
Product
new
Moda Operandi
Chicago
Product
new
Moda Operandi
Chicago
Product
new
Moda Operandi
Chicago
Developer
new
Moda Operandi
Chicago
Developer
new
Moda Operandi
Chicago
Developer
new
Moda Operandi
Chicago
Developer
new
Moda Operandi
Chicago
Developer
new
Moda Operandi
Chicago
Developer
new
Moda Operandi
Chicago
Developer
new
Moda Operandi
Chicago
Developer
new
Moda Operandi
Chicago
Developer
new
Moda Operandi
Chicago
Finance
new
Tribune Publishing
Chicago
Developer
new
Moda Operandi
Chicago
Sales
new
Moda Operandi
Chicago
Data + Analytics
new
Tribune Publishing
Chicago
Finance
new
Tribune Publishing
Chicago
HR
new
Tribune Publishing
Chicago
Content
new
Tribune Publishing
Chicago
Content
new
Tribune Publishing
Chicago
Product
new
Tribune Publishing
Chicago
Data + Analytics
new
Tribune Publishing
Chicago
Data + Analytics
new
Tribune Publishing
Chicago
Marketing
new
Tribune Publishing
Chicago
Sales
new
Tribune Publishing
Chicago
Product
new
Tribune Publishing
Chicago
Sales
new
Tribune Publishing
Chicago
Marketing
new
Tribune Publishing
Chicago
Design + UX
new
Tribune Publishing
Chicago
Sales
new
Tribune Publishing
Chicago
Sales
new
Tribune Publishing
Chicago
Marketing
new
Tribune Publishing
Chicago
Finance
new
Tribune Publishing
Chicago
Content
new
Tribune Publishing
Chicago
Developer
new
Tribune Publishing
Chicago
Developer
new
Tribune Publishing
Chicago
Content
new
Tribune Publishing
Chicago

Chicago startup guides

LOCAL GUIDE
Best Companies to Work for in Chicago
LOCAL GUIDE
Best Software Engineer Jobs in Chicago
LOCAL GUIDE
Coolest Offices in Chicago Tech
LOCAL GUIDE
Best Sales Jobs in Chicago
LOCAL GUIDE
Best Perks at Chicago Tech Companies
LOCAL GUIDE
Your Guide to Healthtech in Chicago
LOCAL GUIDE
Best Data Scientist Jobs in Chicago
LOCAL GUIDE
Best Marketing Jobs in Chicago