This week, we spotlight William White. He’s the Chief Marketing Officer at Walmart.
We’d like to congratulate William White and the team at Walmart on an outstanding Q1 earnings report.
Total revenue came in at $141.6 billion, up 2.4%. Comp sales grew 3%.
Additionally, Sam’s Club sales increased by 10.2% and membership income increased by 10.5%.
Ecommerce sales for the company have grown about 38% over the past two years.
“Across our businesses, we had a strong topline quarter,” said company president and COO Doug McMillon. “We’re grateful to our associates for their hard work and creativity.”
That’s the kind of success William White brings to Walmart.
Enter William Write, Marketing Expert
White has only been with Walmart for about two years. Before that, he worked for Target for seven years.
He held increasing levels of responsibility while at Target. That’s a testament to his leadership skills and success in marketing.
White started off as a Marketing Director in 2013. By the time he left the company, he had served as Senior Vice President of Marketing for two and a half years.
Before working at Target, White was with the Coca-Cola Company for almost nine years. He left that company as Group Brand Director for Diet Coke and Coke Zero in North America.
White Leads the Company in Adapting to Market Change
If you follow the timeline I mentioned above, you’ll realize that White started with Walmart around the time that the COVID-19 pandemic began spreading around the world.
That must have been fun.
But, as any influential leader, he adapted. Right out of the gate.
One thing White noticed early on was that consumers were doing a lot of omnichannel shopping. Online traffic grew while in-store visits dwindled.
But when people did go shopping in a store, they often bought more products in one visit than they did in the past.
And then, about a year into the pandemic, White noticed customers wanted to get out of the house and go shopping.
White had to adapt Walmart’s marketing to all of those changes.
“Over the past couple of years, we’ve continuously innovated to bring new shopping conveniences to our customers–from in-store and curbside pickup to same-day delivery,” he told The Drum last year. “This past year, these services played a critical role in helping customers safely get the essential items they need. We’ve certainly moved faster than we ever have, accelerating new products and services to help our customers save time and money when they’ve needed it the most.”
White also says that he and his team continue to monitor customer behaviors.
How does he do that? With technology.
White claims that the use of modern IT systems allows a multinational megacorp like Walmart to stay “nimble.”
And that flexibility will prove essential if the world economy ever gets another “surprise” like COVID-19.
Walmart+, if you’re unfamiliar with it, seems to be Walmart’s answer to Amazon Prime. It’s a great way for the company to gain a larger share of the consumer ecommerce market.
It launched in 2020. Again, at the time of the pandemic.
And again, when White was just starting with the company.
White claims that Walmart+ offers “the right shopping solutions at the right time, with unlimited free delivery from our stores.”
The service also includes a “scan and go” shopping experience with the Walmart app.
White says he views Walmart+ as “the best of the Walmart experience, where everything you love is more enhanced and personalized.”
But rather than just being satisfied with a comparable imitation of another service, White takes ecommerce marketing to the next level.
His goal is to shorten the customer journey from inspiration to purchase. He does that with content that includes shoppable livestreams and digital videos.
White’s campaign also includes social media marketing that “meet[s] customers where they are with great content that enables excitement and makes shopping easier.”
Dive into Social Responsibility
During his interview with The Drum, White also took time to note that Walmart focuses on values and value.
In other words, it’s not just the Every Day Low Prices that you’ll get when you do business with Walmart. You’ll also have the satisfaction of working with a company that’s in the “live better business.”
“We have responded to socioeconomic, environmental and healthcare challenges with empathy, agility, and sizable enduring commitments,” White says. “We will continue to make sure that the brand shows up in a positive way for associates, customers, and the community.”
Wrapping it Up with William White
White joined Walmart as a marketing executive during a time that was arguably the worst time to join the company in that role.
And yet, he shined.
Because he responded to the challenge by updating the company’s marketing strategy.
The results speak for themselves.