Friday - December 13, 2013
Technology and social media give businesses new ways to interact with customers, to build stronger and longer-lasting relationships, and to create two-way conversations that lead to better products and happier people at both ends of the conversation. They also allow dumb businesses to expose their incompetence faster and to a wider audience than ever before. Each year we see it: Companies that miss the mark by applying "worst practices" for social media and social CRM, or businesses that are just plain insensitive to their social media peers.
Thursday - December 12, 2013
Consumers seem to be softening their hate-hate relationship with the banking industry, according to a new report released Tuesday by the American Customer Satisfaction Index. In fact, customer satisfaction with financial services in general reached a new high in the third quarter of 2013, the report found. The index is up 0.3 percent to 76.7 on a 0 to 100 scale.
Wednesday - December 11, 2013
We are nearing year-end, and that means it's time for my annual year in review -- my assessment of things that will matter in the long run. From my spot, it looks like marketing took a big step toward greater relevance in 2013, the importance of being a partner in an ecosystem increased -- as did the significance of software platforms -- and reports of CRM's demise were greatly exaggerated.
Tuesday - December 10, 2013
There's no doubt email marketing has become nonnegotiable for retailers during the holiday season, and that's particularly true on the mobile side. Mobile emailed offers are also playing bit roles in other strategies, such as showrooming. Retailers have learned not to push against this trend but to fight back by targeting shoppers while they are actually in the store.
Monday - December 9, 2013
Moxie Software, a provider of enterprise social software, has updated its Spaces by Moxie suite of applications with new features in its Chat Spaces, Email Spaces and Knowledge Spaces modules. Moxie Software's user base tends to be large B2C companies that have high-volume interactions with their customers, said Chief Marketing Officer Tara Sporrer.
Saturday - December 7, 2013
This Cyber Monday, retailers of every stripe ran countless ads proclaiming the big shopping day's special deals -- including this one: A Nikon D3200 Two Lens Zoom Kit, originally priced at $799.95, marked down to $499.95. Sounds good, right? We thought so too, but try as we might, we couldn't secure the camera at the deal price. And we tried.
Friday - December 6, 2013
The buyer-seller relationship we most often think of is one in which all the responsibility is loaded on the seller. The seller convinces the customer to buy, then provides support and further marketing to keep the customer loyal. Not every selling relationship works this way, however. When both ends of the sale have a responsibility, things get a little cloudier and more complex.
Thursday - December 5, 2013
Seeking a competitive edge? In any economy and any market, customer service is the key. No matter what your business, if you have one competitor or 100 selling the same product or service, you can tip the scales in your favor by offering a higher level of service. Customers will drive farther, wait longer and even spend more for better service.
Wednesday - December 4, 2013
The new customer era accepts that the direct contact between a vendor and customer or potential customer is being augmented by non-human intermediaries like websites, software robots that triage customer issues, e-commerce systems, social media, and who knows what else. The good news is that customers leave data trails like ants leave trails of pheromones to a candy bar on a sidewalk.
Tuesday - December 3, 2013
Email marketing will be a key strategy in retailers' advertising playbooks this holiday season, but not just any email. Increasingly, it is becoming clear that more consumers are reading emails via their mobile devices -- in many cases, only that way. They are also using their mobile devices in stores for last-minute product research, and that includes the emailed offers from local merchants.
Monday - December 2, 2013
TreeHouse Interactive recently updated the core functionality in its Marketing View marketing automation platform by adding a new tool called "Content Marketing Manager." Marketing automation -- along with TreeHouse's other play in the CRM space, partner relationship management -- is one of the company's raisons d'être. "We shipped our first marketing automation platform in 1997," said CEO Erich Flynn.
Wednesday - November 27, 2013
After attending a Siemens analyst event last week, I've been doing some deep thinking about product category rollouts and their lifecycles, and that has made me go back to Arnulf Grübler's classic, The Rise and Fall of Infrastructures: Dynamics of Evolution and Technological Change in Transport. Yes, there is an important CRM component to this.
Tuesday - November 26, 2013
OK, we survived Dreamforce and that has enabled us to limp home exhausted by all the information we accumulated and the parties we attended just in time for the holidays.
I have a lot of thoughts about the show. If I try to share most of them, the result will be a stream-of-conscious rant that will make little sense, so some discipline is in order.