marketRelay℠ is a simple yet powerful platform for managing, publishing, and distributing your product line content. That said, it's natural to have a number of questions regarding the technology, and all that it can do for you. We have provided answers to some of the more frequently asked questions, but would welcome the opportunity to discuss how marketRelay℠ can best serve your specific needs and objectives. Please click on the button below to request more specific information and/or to schedule a call to discuss the marketRelay℠ solution in more detail.
Ease & Cost
+ Q. Is marketRelay℠ easy to use?
A. It’s very simple. You can have it up and running in a matter of hours, and pull out the bells and whistles as you need them. It works just like a simple database or spreadsheet. But we’ve made it very powerful with features and tools for the very specific purpose of product line distribution and publishing. More importantly, we’ve built it with humongous horsepower for distribution of your product line content anywhere and everywhere you want it to be.
+ Q. Why is marketRelay℠ so inexpensive relative to other solutions?
A. We make our revenue through volume. The more users we have, the more potential users will learn about the power and versatility of marketRelay℠. Over time, we hope to be the Kleenex® or Xerox® of product line content distribution. Until then, we will gladly let you pay us more, but we would rather you just tell your peers, industry, and distribution networks all about marketRelay℠. This will help us out tremendously, and enable us to continue to expand our offering to you that much faster. Either way, we genuinely appreciate your business.
+ Q. Why couldn't we do what marketRelay℠ does ourselves?
A. I guess if you have a dedicated team of developers to build it over the next year or two, and hundreds of thousands in budget to spare, you could build a basic variation. But why wait or waste your precious resources? With marketRelay℠, you can have total control over your content right now, as if you had created the entire system yourself, for pennies on the dollar relative to custom development. So there’s no need to reinvent the wheel. In addition, since marketRelay℠, along with our partners, publishers and development user base, will continue to add more, it will be difficult for a development team to remotely keep up with the marketRelay℠ offering. Frankly, it would be a far better investment to see how your team can bring your marketRelay℠ content to life, and maximize how marketRelay℠ can work for you.
+ Q. What is the difference between a Subscriber, User, Location, Lists/Menu, and an Account?
A. For the purposes of marketRelay℠, the following definitions may help.
Account- A singular account can have multiple users, locations, product lines, product lists, and subscribers. This means you can distribute content to "downstream" accounts, receive content from "upstream" accounts, and manage and publish content for your company, and even for multiple locations on behalf of your company. Each account operates under a singular logo, brand look and feel, and is governed centrally by a narrow set of users, such as a small marketing, product management, sales or management team. See "Why would we want to create separate marketRelay℠ accounts?"
Subscriber- A subscriber is a "downstream" account holder that is subscribing to your "upstream" marketRelay℠ content with your permission, so that they can utilize your content for their own purposes. They can subscribe to your content, use it as is, or edit a copy of your content for their purposes. Each account can have any number of "downstream" subscribers, and can also have any number of "upstream" marketRelay℠ accounts. The subscription feature is perfect for a chain, a franchise, a distributor, or a business with multiple locations that needs to be able to manage their own content and tools. It’s also ideal for manufacturers to be able to distribute product line content to their sales reps, distributors, and retailers. Retailers, distributors and independent reps can also subscribe to multiple manufacturer marketRelay℠ accounts at once in order to build out their entire product line.
Subscriber Levels enables the distribution of certain products to certain groups, as well as the ability to set varying pricing levels according to subscriber levels based on their buying power or purchasing commitment.
User(s)- the key person or team that is in charge of centrally managing your account, your product line content, as well as your marketRelay℠ tools. There is an administrative user, and then permission based roles for multiple users within a single organization's marketRelay℠ account.
Location(s)- the individual place(s) that your business operates; each marketRelay℠ account can serve any number of locations as long as the content can be managed centrally. Otherwise, you may want to consider separate marketRelay℠ accounts that subscribe to your content. See "Why would we want to create separate marketRelay℠ accounts?"
Product Line(s)- users can maintain any number of product lines, for instance, for seasonal product releases. (ex. Fall Product Line, Spring/Summer Product Line) Within product lines, users can manage any number of "Revisions" and release "Revisions" to locations or subscribers, and even roll back to the latest version.
List(s)- The product list name is the identity of a list of your products. Each account can have multiple product lines, and within each product line, multiple distinctly identified lists. For example, a camera manufacturer may have lists, such as digital cameras, video cameras, lenses, camera accessories. Within the camera accessories list, the categories might be camera cases, camera straps, filters. Sub-categories for camera cases might be leather cases, waterproof cases, and so on. Within lists, categories and sub-categories, products can be sorted for presentation in any order you would like.
+ Q. We have multiple locations. Do we need a marketRelay℠ account for each?
A. No, each account can have multiple types of product lines, product lists, multiple users, multiple subscribers and multiple locations. However, there are reasons that you might want or need separate accounts. See, “Why would I want to create separate accounts?”
+ Q. Why would we want to create separate marketRelay℠ accounts?
A. The only reasons you may want to create separate marketRelay℠ accounts are:
-to display distinct logos, looks, and feels for separate brands, divisions or locations. In this case, each would need its own account.
-to isolate control over your product line content, yet syndicate it to other users. Multiple accounts avoids the problem of having too many cooks in the kitchen.
-to empower individual brands, divisions, or locations to manage their own content. If they need to be able to do their own thing with their content, such as edit their own copy, or set their own pricing, they really need their own account.
-to enable individual brands, divisions, or locations to create, utilize, and manage their own set of marketRelay℠ tools. If they need to be able to use the various tools without your involvement, then they should have their own account.
Each account has one set of overall brand settings, such as logo, look and feel, so as long as they remain the same for all of your locations, and both the content and the tools can be governed by one small group of users, then you only need one account.
If you have multiple brands, divisions, or locations that need to be able to utilize your content, yet be able to do all of these things themselves without affecting your content, then each will need their own account.
IMPORTANT: Under a separate account, they can then easily subscribe to your master content to minimize any duplication of effort.
Product Line Content
+ Q. What is the range of content that can be managed with marketRelay℠?
A. marketRelay℠ has numerous content fields ranging from description, multiple types and tiers of copy content, specifications, shipping and handling information, SKU, Manufacturer#, as well as a range of "standard" attributes and the ability to set up any number of custom attributes. The media library enables users to assign images, videos, pdfs, document files, and presentations to one or many products. Further, there is an extensive pricing file for every product that enables pricing by location, subscriber level, customer, variation, as well as regular pricing, discount pricing, MAP, MSRP, List, and base product costs. Again, if an attribute is not available in the standard set, users can set up their own set of custom attributes.
+ Q. How are attribute fields structured within marketRelay℠ and how flexible is the naming and distribution?
A. marketRelay℠ has numerous "standard" attribute fields that most users will be able to utilize for any number of product marketing and sales purposes. In addition, users have the ability to set up their own set of custom attribute fields. Even with "standard" attribute fields, users have the ability to rename fields for distribution and export purposes. Further, when distributing or exporting content, "upstream" users have the ability to select which fields they want to distribute or export, and conversely, "downstream" accounts have the ability to rename, map, or selectively receive or not receive certain content. The flexibility is extensive.
+ Q. We need to be able to vary pricing in multiple ways. Can marketRelay℠ handle that?
A. Absolutely, in multiple ways. marketRelay℠ enables you to vary pricing by location, by subscriber level, and by list, by regular price, and discount price, by product variation, plus practically any number of combinations that you would like. While we encourage you to keep it simple, it is entirely possible to build a very complex pricing matrix if you can keep up with it. Subscriber level, for example, can manage multiple pricing tiers according to the type of subscriber based on buying power or commitment. (ex. Big Box Stores, Regional Chains, Mom and Pop Stores, etc) Or you can vary price by list. By way of a restaurant example, you could charge one price for an entrée for lunch, and a different price at dinner. And you can also price things according to location. For example, a chain location in a small city might charge one price for an item, and an entirely different price in New York City. In addition, marketRelay℠ enables you to maintain a cost figure, as well as a regular price, and a sale price. These prices can be manually controlled, or you can set standard default calculations based on the cost, or the retail price. It’s all up to you. Best of all, you can build custom calculators that maintain markups and rounded pricing however you wish.
+ Q. How can we manage pricing structures?
A. marketRelay℠ offers dozens of ways to view and manage pricing. You can manage pricing at the product detail level, by product line, by product category, by location, by subscriber level, and by product variation. Further, you can search or filter and manage by key word or product attribute. If you wanted to keep up with pricing on a customer by customer basis, you could even manage pricing by specific customer.
+ Q. How can we update pricing?
A. Pricing can be updated on a product by product basis manually, or utilizing the pricing calculators, it can be done in searchable batches, or it can be updated in batches by location, subscriber level, product line and product category. See more on updating pricing to your "downstream" network under the FAQ heading labelled syndication.
+ Q. What if we only need to distribute certain pricing, and not costs, for instance?
A. marketRelay℠ has an entirely secure, and flexible pricing and distribution system. You can maintain all levels of pricing, or if you only want to maintain and distribute a single price, such as a regular price or MSRP, no problem. You may be missing out on some very powerful and flexible features of the marketRelay℠ system, but that is entirely up to you. You also have the ability to maintain certain price fields within your own instance of marketRelay℠ for your own internal purposes, and not distribute those price fields. For instance, if you do not want to distribute the cost figure, you simply turn off the "Cost" price field in the syndication default field preferences.
+ Q. How do the pricing and rounding calculators work?
A. marketRelay℠ is designed to serve just about every type of pricing model in the marketplace. While you can certainly manage pricing manually, or import from other systems, marketRelay℠ has built in custom calculators that can model any type of pricing and rounding structure you desire. Create calculators for any purpose, to markup from cost, to discount from regular price or MSRP/List, to add, subtract, divide, multiply, based on any variable. Further, each calculator can have it's own rounding formula. Round up to the nearest, $.95 cents, round down to the nearest $.99 cents...the sky is the limit. Further, you can create default calculators that vary by location, by subscriber level, or even product line, and every one could have its own rounding formula. If you really wanted to, you could create calculators unique to every customer. While we encourage simplicity, with marketRelay℠, it's entirely within your power to create any pricing structure that you would like.
+ Q. How can we syndicate marketRelay℠ content to our distribution partners and resellers that also need to use our content?
A. The marketRelay℠ syndication system is very powerful. Users can syndicate any, all, or just certain selected content and attributes to any other "downstream" marketRelay℠ subscribers. Essentially, the "downstream" user sends a request through marketRelay℠ to subscribe to the product line content of an "upstream" account. The "upstream" user receives the request, and then approves or denies the subscription request. If they approve the request, they assign a certain subscriber level product line and pricing structure to that particular subscriber, based on their identity. Any account can have as many "downstream" subscriber levels (even customer by customer if necessary) as well as "upstream" subscriptions that they need in order to manage their particular product line content. Once the upstream account accepts and assigns their subscriber level, the downstream account immediately receives the current assigned product line content for receipt and reconciliation into their account.
+ Q. How does the syndication reconciliation process work?
A. marketRelay℠ has its own reconciliation system. The reconcilation system allows downstream users to receive content, and accept all content as is, or they can review content, receive, and/or edit and receive content on a product by product basis. If the product already exists in the downstream account, then the reconciliation process allows the downstream user to review and accept all changes, OR accept each and every product, and review and accept, reject, or edit every single change to each product attribute, one at a time. This level of granular review and reconciliation allows downstream users the ability to see every change that is made to the syndicated content, if they would like, before receiving it into their marketRelay℠ account. At marketRelay℠, we believe in flexibility and power.
+ Q. What if we don't want to syndicate certain products, content, attributes, or pricing details to "downstream" accounts?
A. Again, at marketRelay℠, we believe in flexibility and power. Each account has the ability to select which products, content, attributes, and pricing details they want to syndicate to "downstream" accounts by assignment or through the syndication default preferences.
+ Q. What if we only want to receive certain content from "upstream" accounts?
A. Of course, every account has the ability to select which products, content, attributes, and pricing details they want to receive from "upstream" accounts, by default. Further, when receiving content on a product by product, attribute by attribute basis, users can even accept, reject, and/or edit every single content field, attribute or pricing field they would like, one at a time.
+ Q. What if we would rather just export the content and distribute it another way?
A. If that's what you need to do, that's no problem with marketRelay℠. It's not nearly as efficient as working within the marketRelay℠ infrastructure. However, every marketRelay℠ account can not only export any content, fields, attributes, or pricing, by any syndication level, marketRelay℠ also enables you to save as many export configurations that you would like in case you would like to export the same set of content over and over again.
+ Q. How does marketRelay℠ publish product line content?
A. Unique to most any product information management system, marketRelay℠ enables you to publish directly from your product line content to widgets, apps, social media, ecommerce applications, or through an API, and even back into internal communications, marketing, and management systems. Further, marketRelay℠ allows you to publish information on behalf of your brand or company in the form of a corporate presentation (as with a manufacturer), and then it can also publish on a location by location basis (for organizations with multiple locations). This is the ultimate in working from a "single point of truth". Every location, partner, distributer, sales rep, and reseller can leverage the exact same data...and each can have its own unique pricing structure. In addition, you can release publishing content according to your own market timing, first to your sales reps, then to your wholesalers/distributors, and then to your resellers.
+ Q. What kind of publishing widgets are available through marketRelay℠?
A. Currently, marketRelay℠ offers website widgets which can be inserted into HTML sites or website CMS systems via embed code. In addition, marketRelay℠ offers a Facebook widget app, and access to a JSON document which can be configured for other publishing purposes. In addition, we have a fully flexible API in development that is scheduled for launch next quarter. Once the API is launched, we intended to open a developer community, and announce the development of a broad variety of web widgets for varying product promotion purposes. Our plan is to make the marketRelay℠ platform into the ultimate product line marketing platform. Further, we plan to develop both mobile and tablet applications to support product sales and marketing. Of course, with the API, you and your development team will also be able to develop your own custom applications or integrate with your existing applications.
+ Q. How do pricing and product updates work with the marketRelay℠ publishing platform?
A. We're so glad you asked. Unlike any other platform on the market today, publishing with the marketRelay℠ publishing platform is based on a REAL TIME push of your product updates. This means that when you update your products, you have the ability to select "Publish", and make your content immediately available anywhere, and everywhere you publish with the marketRelay℠ publishing platform. This could be a dozen places, a hundred, or a thousand places. You will no longer need to pass the content to all of the different places you need to update, including web developers, siloed database systems, CMS systems, multiple departments, or otherwise. It is actually possible to publish to all of them at once. Think of the steps this will save, including proofing, double-checking, and loads of labor and follow up communications. Update marketRelay℠ once, select "Publish", and your product is current and accurate EVERYWHERE it appears. I know it's hard to believe, but with marketRelay℠, now it's entirely possible.
+ Q. What if we need to publish different pricing in different markets?
A. We're so glad you asked. With the marketRelay℠ publishing platform, you could publish on behalf of hundreds of locations, each with unique pricing if you wanted. AND YES, update marketRelay℠ once, select "Publish", and your product is current and accurate EVERYWHERE AND IN EVERY LOCATION it appears. I know it's hard to believe, AGAIN, but with marketRelay℠, now it's entirely possible.