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Mila D'Antonio | December 31, 2009
With 2010 around the corner, businesses everywhere are gearing up to tackle a laundry list of resolutions designed to increase their bottom lines. In order to start the New Year in prosperity, businesses must look to overcome barriers that prevented them from reaching their objectives in 2009 and to set new goals that will help increase earnings in the coming year. Here are seven resolutions that businesses can adopt to help them prosper. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | December 30, 2009
It seems that the holidays are a profitable time not just for retailers, but also for thieves who steal gift cards from the mail. Or perhaps it's not so profitable for those thieves after all--especially when a retailer like J.Crew is involved. The company's proactive approach to service saved the day, and the sale. Read more »
Guest Blogger | December 29, 2009
In the not too distant past the addage "a rising tide lifts all boats" was true for many markets. It didn't seem to matter your industry -- incredible growth and expansion meant that many firms benefited from the high economic tides that brought double- and, in some industries, triple-digit annual growth. To succeed, the management team simply needed capital and a plan to expand sales channels to achieve revenue growth. Ah, yes, it was all about the top-line revenue number, Read more »
Guest Blogger | December 22, 2009
More than 75 percent of Fortune 1000 companies with an existing online presence have undertaken some form of social media for marketing or customer relations purposes, according to Gartner research director Adam Sarner. However, Sarner also believes that some 50 percent of these campaigns have been or will be classified as failures. While it is increasingly clear that companies are incorporating social media into their overall communications strategy, questions still remain for marketers: "How do I build long-term credibility through Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | December 21, 2009
Another year has come and gone. We at 1to1 Media have seen our fair share of innovation and best practices around customer strategy. Whether its social media's impact on marketing, sales, and service, or companies finally integrating data across channels, there has been much progress in 2009 in the name of customer centricity. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | December 18, 2009
It's a week before Christmas and all through the mall Every shopper is rushing, buying things big and small. The items were displayed in the stores with great care In hopes that they'd sell till the walls were quite bare. The sales signs were hung to catch shoppers' eyes; Few products were full-priced, even the ties. Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | December 17, 2009
Most experts say you should work harder than ever during a recession, doubling your efforts both to increase your value and make up for production lost to downsizing. Likewise, many advise a similar tact in customer relationships during hard times; concentrate on keeping the customers you have since new ones are in short supply. Neither is wrong, but maybe there are better solutions. This isn't news, but many industry-changing companies were created during past economic downturns. Microsoft, HP, GE, and Read more »
Guest Blogger | December 17, 2009
Not so long ago, it used to be that digital marketers didn't really comprehend the value of one-to-one marketing. I can say that because, since 1998, I have been in the thick of digital marketing, working with some of the larger brands in the nation. Even as recent as a few years ago, the relationship was all about the website. Sure, digital marketers talked about personalization. We even reflected that we listened to users' feedback, using their preferences to slightly Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | December 16, 2009
Dragging recyclables to the curb is no fun, especially when the bin overflows with unwanted catalogs. As the 2009 holiday winds down, I look at my stacks of duplicate catalogs from the usual suspects--Pottery Barn, Eddie Bauer, L.L. Bean, Crate & Barrel, Victoria's Secret, and Wine Enthusiast--and wonder why this cycle of recycling still continues today, with data strategies so recognized. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | December 15, 2009
To me, CRM has always meant one thing: CRM is the strategy an organization uses to create profitable relationships with its customers. And when I say profitable, I mean beneficial to both company and customer. It doesn't matter what you call it--customer relationship management, customer managed relationships, total customer management--CRM is about partnership, and the enterprises that recognize that are the ones customers tend to gravitate toward. It's also about creating a compelling customer experience; one that boost wallet share, Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | December 14, 2009
The conventional wisdom of e-commerce is that customers only care about the best price. As a result, many online retailers don't consider customer loyalty an attainable goal. But according to a recent Aberdeen report, online loyalty is possible. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | December 11, 2009
Considering the many technologies out there to help companies with their customer relationship management efforts, sometimes I wonder if CRM is real, or just a pleasant, Santa-like myth. Consider this missed opportunity: Read more »
Guest Blogger: Bruce Temkin | December 9, 2009
I just published a research report called "Consumers Expect Poor Service Experiences." The research, which was based on surveying more than 4,200 U.S. consumers, looked at consumer expectations for getting an issue resolved in 10 different areas (apparel, bank account, hotel, auto insurance policy, TV service, credit card, wireless phone plan, Internet service, computer, and health insurance policy). It turns out that consumers don't expect much from customer service. Here are some of the findings: Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | December 9, 2009
Immersed in customer stories, I often scratch my head when I hear about the stupid things that companies do. You would think by now with all of the discussion about the importance of delivering a quality customer experience that companies could get the basics right, but they don't. Instead, I am constantly surprised how companies sabotage their own success. Here's one example I that I recently encountered: Read more »
Guest Blogger | December 8, 2009
We all know the brands: Disney, the Ritz-Carlton, Zappos.com. Unless you live under a rock, you've probably done business with at least one of these famous companies. Sure, they're renowned for their customer service, and yes, they continue to make profits when other brands are going out of business, but do you know how they deliver those world-class customer experiences? They created a corporate culture that is all-encompassing, that filters through every level of the organization and underscores every aspect Read more »
Ginger Conlon | December 4, 2009
"Marketing needs a complete revamping," FreshDirect Chairman and CEO Richard S. Braddock told attendees during The Conference Board's 2009 Marketing Executive Conference. "Marketing as a discipline in woefully suboptimized in the digital age." Although it's critically important to get close to customers today, few companies are marketing and managing with the intensity possible, Braddock said. They can't adapt to today's pace--largely due to cultural obstacles within their organizations. Companies need to completely revamp their approach, he said, and harness the Read more »
Guest Blogger | December 2, 2009
I've been getting a bunch of inquiries about the best metrics to include on a dashboard, which vendors make the best partners, and how to set up for dashboard success. These inquiries come from firms that have already made it past the first hurdle, firms that already know they need a better way to organize the masses of data and information they have that illustrate where they're successful and where they could improve. Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | December 2, 2009
Whether you're a large retailer or small business, the importance of good customer service cannot be underestimated. This is especially true in a business environment that is growing increasingly more competitive. Read more »
Guest Blogger | December 1, 2009
It should come as no surprise that growth in a company is often directly related to how effectively leaders and managers delegate and are able hold people accountable. The more effective the "hand off" to others, the more aligned everyone becomes and are able to work together towards the same goal. The less effective the delegation, the more likely people are to find that they're out of sync with everyone else. Here are some tips to make the "hand off" Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | November 30, 2009
If you have any free time today, chances are you're perusing the Cyber Monday deals instead of checking my blog. But for those of you who have stumbled on my blog, let's talk deals. And I don't mean pricing. Free shipping and price matching have become a Cyber Monday staple at online retailers. The real differentiation comes from those e-tailers providing customer service that goes above and beyond. Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | November 25, 2009
Every year during this holiday, I pause and reflect about what I am thankful for in my life. This year I am grateful for my friends, family, my job..."Jon & Kate Plus 8" going off the air. In the spirit of giving thanks, I compiled a list of 2009 customer strategy elements for which I'm thankful. Read more »
Guest Blogger | November 24, 2009
You love your customers, right? Of course you do. After all, your customers are the basis for your company's success or failure. But maybe it's not just business. Maybe you have a real commitment to the happiness of your customers. You look at someone like Tony Hsieh at Zappos, whose mission is "delivering happiness" to his customers and employees, and say to yourself, "That's just like me!" Not so fast, tiger. Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | November 23, 2009
Every year bloggers, analysts, and other experts make predictions about what we'll see in the next year. Many of them end up way off the mark, but one 2009 prediction came to fruition in a big way. Social customer strategy is on the minds of almost every company these days, from marketing and sales to customer service and even brand building. Read more »
Guest Blogger | November 19, 2009
Okay...let's all take a deep breath. Now exhale. And for just a moment, let's get this Twitter-mania out of our system. Don't get me wrong...I appreciate Twitter. I use Twitter. Yes, I've even tweeted and re-tweeted several times about stuff that really isn't all that important. Yet, there's a growing realization that the true value of Twitter -- the value that will make it a valuable business tool, and what it means to us as marketing professionals -- has nothing Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | November 18, 2009
I'm in San Francisco this week at the annual Dreamforce conference run by Salesforce.com (my third visit, and it's much bigger this year than the last two). During today's keynote, CEO Marc Benioff announced Salesforce Chatter, a product that supplements the company's service, sales, platform, and customization tools. Read more »
Guest Blogger: Bruce Temkin | November 18, 2009
I recently published a report called "Sixteen Voice of the Customer Recommendations." To uncover this advice, I analyzed the 40 nominations submitted for Forrester's Voice of the Customer (VoC) Award from earlier this year. I examined responses to the question: "What lessons have you learned that would be most valuable to other firms?" The analysis uncovered these 16 recommendations across 5 categories: Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | November 18, 2009
On Monday my colleague Elizabeth Glagowski blogged about a reader's negative experience with Subway. A reader shared with her how she recently emailed Subway to suggest that the company put the tuna sandwich back on the $5 menu. Instead of accepting the customer's feedback, passing it along to the product development team, and possibly learning from the customer who eats at Subway a few times every week, the customer service rep. instead sent her a surprising reply. Read more »
Guest Blogger | November 17, 2009
I've been having fun quoting Stephen Covey's Habit 5 from The Seven Habits of Highly Successful People in relation to Social CRM. If it's been a while since you read this classic, Habit 5 says, "Seek first to understand, then to be understood". It's a good piece of advice that many of us learned before we could read; for me, it's something that I have to relearn almost daily. Habit 5 is real gold for Social CRM, but it is Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | November 16, 2009
Last week I got an email from a reader who wanted to share an experience she had with Subway restaurants. Unfortunately what started out as a positive experience turned into a negative one, and Subway really missed the mark on two fronts: customer service and involving customers in the decision-making process. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | November 13, 2009
Earlier this week I attended The Conference Board's 2009 Marketing Executive Conference. The presentations offered plenty of food for thought. Here are a few nuggets: Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | November 12, 2009
Last week I attended an event at the Yale School of Management focusing on Finding an Upside in the Downturn. Much of the public discussion around how to recover from the current economic crisis centers on cutting expenses, realigning staff, and increasing revenue through pricing. At this gathering, however, the speakers emphasized improving the customer experience, engaging with consumers through new channels, and creating a brand image. Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | November 11, 2009
It's nearing that time of year once again where millions of employees try to look busy at their desks, but in reality they're wasting company time by shopping for holiday gifts. Yes, Cyber Monday , the ceremonial kickoff to the online holiday shopping season, is on November, 30th. Read more »
Guest Blogger | November 10, 2009
I love Wegmans. In fact, I think I'm one of my local store's top 100 customers. At least that's what they told me when I picked up my thank-you gift certificate and gourmet olive oil last Christmas. I use my Shopper's Club Card religiously, not just because I like saving on my rather substantial grocery bill (we eat well at Chez Les Boisson) and want to be sure to receive my gift certificate next holiday season. I also swipe because Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | November 9, 2009
Many economists say the worst is over and we will soon begin a global economic recovery. It's hard to believe that now, but time will tell. And as the economy begins to recover, the steps nations will take mirror steps companies take to improve customer relationships and build long-term loyalty. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | November 6, 2009
Earlier this week, during his keynote at ad:tech, WPP CEO Sir Martin Sorrell presented four global business trends--and one marketing trend--executives should be watching: Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | November 5, 2009
What separates the winners and losers in social media? Why does one idea catch on while a similar one fails? Do the same principles that apply in other channels translate to social networks, blogging platforms, communities, and the like? I don't have the answers to those questions, but I'm curious to find out what thoughts people have. Lately it seems Twitter and Facebook are the two dominant social platforms, but it wasn't so long ago that everyone was touting MySpace's Read more »
Guest Blogger | November 4, 2009
About 10 years ago, when Forrester was writing some of our early research on effective Web design, we noticed a pattern among leading companies. They told us they were finding it very helpful to use design personas -- models of customers based on qualitative research into real customers, but presented as vivid stories about individuals (not segment descriptions). These tools enabled them to stay focused on the needs of their most important customers when designing online experiences. Since then, design Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | November 4, 2009
On October 22, I posted a blog titled, "The DMA Needs a Paradigm Shift," which garnered some passionate responses from readers about their frustration with the DMA needing to evolve. Read more »
Guest Blogger | November 3, 2009
You can find the words outperform, outfox, outmaneuver, outspend, outthink in the dictionary because they describe deeply engrained habits of how we think and act. The source of sustainable competitive advantage in the 21st century, however, is such a new idea that the term has not yet entered Webster's or Oxford's. You will not find outbehave in the dictionary--not yet, anyway. Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | November 2, 2009
A recent study of 101 C-level executives by Businessweek Research found that even in this down economy, long-term customer-based programs are overtaking short-term cost cutting measures as priorities for senior management. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | October 30, 2009
"True marketing value lies not only in who you reach, but also in how they respond," Traci Gere told me this morning when we discussed trends and challenges in marketing measurement. "This is the 'so what' of reach. What did customers do with what they heard and learned?" Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | October 29, 2009
Any office is susceptible to an outbreak of swine flu due to the shared equipment, close quarters, and friendly contact. Fortunately, most offices can tell employees to work from home, stay home sick, or can often close down for a day or two until the illness passes. Contact centers often don't have that luxury, but they should be developing a plan in case H1N1 hits their employees. Read more »
Guest Blogger | October 29, 2009
It's a matter of perspective: we are in a recession, or we have found ourselves within the longest and most unpredictable of sales cycles. If you determine that we are in a recessionary environment, you cut way back, you bunker up and hunker down. You continue to ride it out, no matter how long "it" is going to take. But if you acknowledge that business is being done -- albeit to a different rhythm than it was two years ago Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | October 28, 2009
Until this past July, David Carroll was known in relatively small circles. As the lead singer of his band Sons of Maxwell, the Canadian traveled around the United States generally without incident. But in 2008 when United baggage employees threw his guitar from a plane and he spent the following nine months unsuccessfully getting retribution from United for his broken guitar, he ended up posting a video called "United Breaks Guitars" in July on YouTube poking fun at United's baggage Read more »
Guest Blogger | October 28, 2009
In a world where users approach the Web with ever increasing expectations, a firm's Web site has become critical for building a company's relationship with its customers. Today, the Web site is often the first, and sometimes only, place customers interact with a company. Unfortunately, many sites offer lackluster experiences that leave an emotional void. So how can companies create more engaging connections with their customers? That's the subject of a new Forrester Research report called "Emotional Experience Design." Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | October 27, 2009
I'm at the Forrester Consumer Forum today in Chicago (#FCF09 on Twitter), and I'll be blogging and tweeting (@jnedelka) updates over the next couple days. I was in a presentation about Forrester's Technographics survey earlier today, and the research shows a correlation between mobile internet usage and the number of smartphone handsets available in a country. For example, in Japan 70 percent of mobile users go online with their phone at least once a month, and 48 percent at least Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | October 27, 2009
Jim Davis, Senior Vice President and CMO of SAS, says that analytics has moved from a departmental approach owned by IT or marketing up into the executive suite. Executives now understand what analytics can do for their business. He unveiled what he defines as the eight levels of analytics: Read more »
Guest Blogger | October 27, 2009
Over the past decade I've seen a lot of changes in social media. Blogging, when it finally became more well-known, went from being the scourge of modern writing to being the future of most every news publication (and much more). Social networks shifted past the gee-whiz, kids-do-it of MySpace and into the 750,000-new-users-a-day of Facebook, and the crazy micro-world of Twitter. YouTube serves more than 13 billion videos a day (fewer and fewer of which are dogs on skateboards). And Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | October 26, 2009
Earlier this month I attended the ExactTarget user conference, where numerous email and integrated communications experts shared their perspectives on the industry. The conference started the day after the Wall Street Journal published a piece in which the author explained how email is being overtaken by social media and mobile communications. Needless to say, there weren't many people at the show who agreed with that hypothesis. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | October 23, 2009
I have a new personal email address, and I'm slowly migrating my email newsletter subscriptions and the like from the old to the new address. What surprised me during the process is this: Numerous companies--even some with progressive offerings like selecting your preferred frequency--don't offer a way to change your email address in their system. You have to unsubscribe, then resubscribe with your new address. Read more »
Martha Rogers | October 23, 2009
Jetting across the Pacific now, after a great week with some very smart CMO types in Sydney and Melbourne. The Aussies know that with just over 20 million people in the whole country, a company needs to make the most of every customer experience. Here's how one of them is doing it: Read more »
Guest Blogger | October 22, 2009
Information about us--our actions, our activities, our current "status," and the like--are increasingly public, shared...usually willingly...on sites such as Facebook and Twitter. However, a number of current trends and issues highlight that we, as customers, may want to take a more active role in managing those bits of social information (and much, much more). As more of our information moves into the Network, do we really know who is looking after it on our behalf? Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | October 22, 2009
Last week, prior to DMA09, Julian Beresford, owner of Beresford Research and a member of our 1to1 Insider's Group on LinkedIn, posed a question: Is the DMA (Direct Marketing Association) still relevant? In an age where marketers are turning to social media to reach out to the customer and leverage the digital channels to dynamically communicate with clients, it's a valid question. After just returning from the annual conference in San Diego, I can answer him. The answer is "yes" Read more »
Don Peppers | October 21, 2009
A recent New York Times article raised serious issues about the viability of one-to-one marketing. Citing a survey of consumer attitudes commissioned by professors at the University of Pennsylvania and the University of California, Berkeley, the article reports that a clear majority of Americans (66%) reject the whole idea of tailored ads and personalized news, even without being told how their own interests are being tracked online. But this survey is deeply flawed and its authors' conclusions are biased (they're Read more »
Guest Blogger | October 21, 2009
According to Amazon's former Chief Scientist, individuals will generate more data in 2009 than in the combined history of mankind. Think about the implications for your marketing and overall business. On the one hand, it is possible to know more about every prospect and customer, and to improve their customer experience based on what you know about them. On the other hand, it's very easy to drown in the exponentially growing stream of data. Customer Intelligence (CI) professionals sit at Read more »
Guest Blogger | October 20, 2009
With all of today's financial pressures, everyone wants to show return on investment. The problem is, not everything has an easily measured ROI. More specifically, since ROI is actually a financial measure, sometimes--many times--what we really need to be satisfied with is simply measureable results. Consider my recent conference experience: Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | October 19, 2009
Have you ever seen those Calvin & Hobbes decals (usually on pick-up trucks) of Calvin, um, relieving himself, on a competitor's truck logo? While not the most mature of stickers, it shows that some people are fiercely loyal to their automakers. However, the epic collapse of the big three automakers -- the closing of dealerships, the shuttering or sale of popular brands -- may cause that loyalty to wane. Both automakers and dealers need to re-focus their efforts around customers Read more »
Ginger Conlon | October 16, 2009
If you're reading this blog, then the likelihood is quite high that your goal, and your company's goal, is to deliver a consistently outstanding customer experience. A heady goal considering that delivering even a consistently positive customer experience is challenging enough--frontline employees are often a wildcard due to varying levels of training, often misaligned compensation, or simply having a bad day; shipping or inventory issues may arise that make promised deliveries evaporate like morning mist; products may have an unexpected Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | October 15, 2009
Most new technology will have a certain segment of the population screaming about government or corporate takeover, running for a shack in the woods in fear. Such people, who live "off the grid," could soon be joined by many others if utility companies have their way. Not that paranoia about big brother will go mainstream, but that more people may literally choose to live off the power grid. Read more »
Guest Blogger | October 15, 2009
If you haven't read my colleague Lisa Bradner's latest report, "Adaptive Brand Marketing," I strongly encourage you to do so. It is focused on the changing world of brand management, but its implications and principles go way beyond. Lisa points out that organizations are ill-equipped to handle the world of "always on" marketing in the digital age, and explains that, to remain relevant, marketing leaders will embrace Adaptive Brand Marketing. This is an approach in which marketers respond quickly to Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | October 14, 2009
As cold and flu season is upon us, many of us will be reaching for tissue, or Kleenex as most Americans refer to them. Our universal use of this term dates back to the 1930's when Kimberly-Clark began marketing the slogan "Don't carry a cold in your pocket" and Kleenex's utilization as a disposable handkerchief took hold. Today, the term "Kleenex" has been genericized and many dictionaries include definitions for Kleenex in their publications. Read more »
Guest Blogger | October 13, 2009
The other day I walked into a new-business presentation with seven or eight committee people; some I knew and some were total strangers, and my assignment was to convince them that we were the company they should hire to solve their marketing challenges. Bonding can be as important as demonstrating your strategic thinking. One of my favorite ad industry gurus called it "dating." Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | October 12, 2009
What will the future of marketing look like? Not like the past, that's for sure. Social media and consumer control aren't just fads. Marketers need to embrace this truth and contribute to the conversation, not try to own it. The best way to do that is to understand your customers, be relevant with your information and branding, and measure the results. These are the tenets of direct marketing, which will only grown in importance in the future. Direct marketing experts Read more »
Ginger Conlon | October 9, 2009
One concern some executives have today is how open their organization should be online with social networking or online communities. Michael Maoz, a vice president and distinguished analyst with Gartner, offers five suggestions and one caveat regarding how to be good at "openness." Read more »
Guest Blogger | October 8, 2009
Social media has changed the way we discover, read, and share information and is changing the way businesses connect with customers, partners, peers, and even the competition. Blogs, wikis, discussion forums, and social networks allow anyone to broadcast information and ideas quickly and easily. Much of the early success in social media comes from B2C companies. Searching the phrase "social media case study" online returns several B2C examples, but very few from B2B companies. The dichotomy is striking, but one Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | October 8, 2009
***Update (6:45PM): Returned home to a message from Lowe's saying the carpet is ready and I can pick it up....good ending to an otherwise negative story*** Today the brand that's in my doghouse is Lowe's. For whatever reason, every week I have a new customer service issue that isn't resolved properly. Maybe it's just because I write about the industry and I'm more sensitive, but my theory is that workers are less motivated nowadays to give good customer service because Read more »
Don Peppers | October 7, 2009
I'm now about four months into my "Twitter Experiment," and I can confirm that my initial skepticism was entirely misplaced. I have been intrigued, delighted, inspired, and educated by micro-blogging in ways I could never have guessed before. I remember vividly the day my ad agency had its first email system installed. By the next week, it seemed to me that the sheer velocity of thinking and transacting had radically increased. And I have the same feeling now about my Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | October 7, 2009
We've been hearing the same thing for quite some time from executives: that customer experience is important. But only recently with the downturn of the economy, executives are showing that they're taking experience seriously. At a customer experience roundtable last night hosted by Tealeaf and held at the Gramercy Park Tavern, executives from Tealeaf and Harris Interactive revealed the findings of a new study they jointly conducted this past summer. The 5th annual Survey of Online Consumer Behavior, which interviewed Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | October 6, 2009
David Rubenstein, cofounder and managing director of The Carlyle Group, spoke at The World Business Forum today about the economic crisis. He offered these tips for succeeding in the future: Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | October 6, 2009
Bill Conaty, 40-year HR veteran at GE, spoke at the World Business Forum about his "lessons learned" in leadership development. Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | October 6, 2009
You can follow me live today at the World Business Forum at twitter.com/miladantonio Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | October 6, 2009
I'm attending the World Business Forum today in New York City and will be blogging throughout the day about the various speakers, including T Boone Pickens and George Lucas, have to say about leadership, innovation, and the economy. Bill George, author of The 7 Lessons for Leading in Crisis, is currently speaking about the current economic crisis and how many leaders focs on short-termism. Here, he offers his "7 lessons." Read more »
Guest Blogger | October 6, 2009
You don't want to catch it. You certainly don't want to spread it. And if employees contract it, it can have a devastating effect on your company's bottom line. What is it? It's resentment flu and it's epidemic in businesses across the country. Surprised? Even though your employees are still working, their first thoughts may not be on how lucky they are to have a job. With financial pressures on businesses higher than ever, taking good care of your employees Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | October 5, 2009
For marketing professionals, October means more than pumpkins and candy corn. It's the month of the DMA annual conference, one of the biggest marketing events of the year. As we prepare for the conference, 1to1 Media has focused many of our articles and resources on the topic of direct marketing. It's an industry in transition, but just as important as ever to marketing strategy. Read more »
Guest Blogger | October 2, 2009
Marketing has seen tremendous change over the past five to 10 years. Take a closer look at direct and digital marketing specifically and you'll see a clear shift. Marketers are beginning to combine the opportunities made possible by the principles and disciplines of direct marketing with the accountability and engagement that are possible with digital marketing. We call this shift iDirect - where the blurring of the lines between these disciplines is being used to garner greater customer engagement that Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | October 1, 2009
I was researching a story this week for our 1to1 Weekly newsletter about how paid and organic search work together, trying to find studies that supported a blended approach to SEO/SEM (search engine optimization and search engine marketing). I was surprised by how little independent research has been done in this area, considering the rising cost of keywords and the recent focus on optimizing website content for search. Read more »
Guest Blogger | September 30, 2009
While Ben Bernanke has been raising our hopes that the recession is "very likely over," we're noticing a change in the conversations that we're having with marketers and vendors alike. These conversations seem to reflect that the economy is getting stronger, purse strings are loosening, there's greater talk of RFPs and vendor evaluations -- this week alone, our team had inquiries about vendor selection with marketers in insurance, retail (and it's almost Q4!), travel, pharmaceutical, and telecom. So, while we're Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | September 30, 2009
At 1to1, we know the tremendous amount of time and money companies spend pursuing prospects, and on average only 20 to 40 percent of leads convert. In this economy, organizations need to implement lead management strategies and solutions with proven ROI, actionable analytics, real-time results, and scalability. Read more »
Guest Blogger: Jeanne Bliss | September 29, 2009
Beloved companies decide differently than everybody else. Acutely aware of how their every action impacts how customers feel and respond to them, they take the time to make purposeful decisions about the contacts they have with customers. First and foremost, the beloved companies decided to believe. They believe their customers and they believe their employees. And they practice this first by suspending cynicism. Trust and belief are cornerstones of their relationships. By deciding to trust customers, they are freed from Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | September 28, 2009
We here at 1to1 Media often discuss the importance of trust in the business-customer relationship. Companies that can create a trust-based relationship will see value over the long term. In financial services these days, however, it's a tricky situation. Consumers in general are wary of banks, insurance companies, and other financial services firms after living through bailouts, sub-prime chaos, and shuttered branches. Even the so-called "good guys" have been lumped into the bunch, and it's hard to overcome the untrustworthy Read more »
Guest Blogger | September 25, 2009
Even though customer experience is viewed as a seminal force that will eventually drive contact center ops, there are far too many opinions in the market on how to realize it. Should customer experience be measured as first contact resolution in the center, should it be measured through well-oiled service factors like handle and wait times, or do we really need to look deeper? I was in conversation with a veteran ops leader and we poked through a few perspectives. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | September 25, 2009
Mobile devices today are always on and always on hand, so how does an organization get attention on its customers' smart phones? Gartner research vice president Gene Alvarez asked and answered that question during his presentation on e-commerce in a wireless world during the recent Gartner CRM Summit. According to Alvarez, by 2012, 30 percent of smart phone users will browse the Web to shop, resulting in 3 percent of the smart phone population conducting e-commerce transactions using their phones. Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | September 24, 2009
The impact on customer experience from social media technologies is not un-measureable. Difficult to measure, yes, but not impossible. Recently we've finally seen data that supports using customer communities, blogs, and social networks to improve customer service and tie the improvements to bottom-line metrics. Now the question is becoming "do you measure social media ROI" rather than "can you measure social media ROI," and research suggests most companies don't. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | September 24, 2009
I just got off the phone with a customer service representative from Delta, and couldn't help but shake my head in disbelief. I called to cancel a reservation and was completely put off by the fact that there is a $150 "penalty" to change my ticket. That's a story within itself. The reason I was surprised was this: Even though I was clearly annoyed by the absurd penalty, the agent made not one, but two cross-sell offers. Two! Read more »
Guest Blogger: Harley Manning | September 23, 2009
The customer experience team at Forrester is currently updating our Web site review methodology, which will get us to Version 8. I'll write more about that in a subsequent post but I wanted to get it on the table (or in the blogosphere - pick your metaphor) by way of explaining why we've been looking at which version of what browser to use as our default for conducting research. In trying to answer that question we had one of our Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | September 23, 2009
Marketers may be facing shrinking budgets, but a new study shows greater accountability best practices and closer collaboration between marketing and finance despite having less resources. Read more »
Guest Blogger | September 22, 2009
During hard times it's even more important to keep your customers. Markets have shrunk and competition for remaining customers is becoming more intense. But, it's possible to add customers during hard economic times if you are very good and consistent in what you do. I have always believed that the secret to keeping and adding customers goes beyond having the best product and service. There is nothing more compelling than sharing your customers' fundamental beliefs and values - and authentically Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | September 21, 2009
Customers are gaining more control of the relationship with almost all businesses they frequent. Even a stoic and reserved industry like banking has relaxed its stringent operations in favor of meeting customer needs. Umpqua Bank in the Northwest U.S. took the idea to new heights by redesigning almost every aspect of the branch to serve multiple needs of its customers. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | September 18, 2009
CRM is becoming a dead topic, asserts RightNow Technologies CMO Jason Mittelstaedt. "The moniker and category are dated and tired," he said when we spoke about customer strategy trends during the Gartner CRM Summit. Customer experience and social media are two growing areas executives are and should be focused on today. "Customer experience is the higher calling," Mittelstaedt said. According to Mittelstaedt, the big challenge is the question of customer experience ownership: Should it be one person or a group? Read more »
Ginger Conlon | September 18, 2009
"Do you know who your customer advocates are and how much their recommendations are worth to your organization?" Lithium CMO Sanjay Dholakia posed that question rhetorically when we were discussing social media trends during the Gartner CRM Summit. "The wall is coming down between on and offline," he said, citing as an example Barnes & Noble, whose retail sales of specific books increase when customers discuss those books it its online community. He also noted that companies should track the Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | September 17, 2009
Despite recent coverage of major organizations backing away from social media, avoiding it like the plague, there is some hope. The Air Force, not necessarily the first group you'd think of when it comes to online innovation (although many other types of innovation do come to mind), is fully embracing social networks, Twitter, and other online tools to build its brand and connect with servicemen, servicewomen, and citizens. Read more »
Guest Blogger: Bruce Temkin | September 16, 2009
In a new Forrester Research report called Service Seekers Are More Loyal Than Price Seekers (based on a survey of about 4,600 US consumers), we analyze the loyalty of four consumer segments that I've previously discussed. The report examines the loyalty of these segments across 12 industries: airlines, banks, wireless providers, credit card providers, hotels, insurance firms, Internet service providers, investment firms, health plans, PC manufacturers, retailers, and TV service providers. Across all industries and consumer segments, I analyzed three Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | September 16, 2009
The CMO Council and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce launched an initiative yesterday that not only makes sound business sense, but it's also socially beneficial. The Pause to Support a Cause campaign aims to create a global community of millions of research-ready and receptive panelists to participate in online surveys and market research. It's expected to direct as much as 10 percent of the $18.9 billion spent on market research worldwide to thousands of non profits. Read more »
Guest Blogger | September 15, 2009
What do you do when your business process has turned escalation into SOP? With my son's sixth birthday around the corner, I recently found myself headed to the local "big box" book retailer for a copy of Roald Dahl's Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator. We'd enjoyed reading Charlie and the Chocolate Factory aloud over vacation, and I knew he was looking forward to the next installment. The book was easily located and I proceeded to check-out. Purchase in hand, Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | September 14, 2009
A year ago today, financial services firm Lehman Bros. collapsed, triggering a 500-point drop in the stock market, the toppling of other businesses considered "too big to fail," and signaling the start of the worst recession in modern times. Now, a year later, have businesses learned that short-term gain and isolated profit motives aren't sustainable? Read more »
Ginger Conlon | September 11, 2009
How do you win customers' attention and loyalty? Know them and be relevant. That was the straightforward advice Acxiom's Chris Marriott gave earlier this week during its Global Marketing Performance Series event on social media marketing. "Leverage the information you have about customers to personalize communications," he said. Marriott, vice president and general manager for Acxiom's Digital Marketing Services' Eastern Region, also advised attendees to: Build strategies around customers (not just products or services) Find more people who look/act like Read more »
Guest Blogger | September 11, 2009
With no recommendation engine, graphical improvements, or image search, Craigslist is a website stuck in the past. And while business best practices often include heavy investment in sales, marketing, and customer service, Craigslist eschews these functions--yet continues to grow its revenues. What makes Craigslist a "classifieds killer" and how is it able grow its business with little attention to the customer experience? Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | September 10, 2009
I admire Wikipedia for trying to create a common knowledge database that everyone could access and participate in, but ultimately the site learned what politicians and sociologists realized long ago: when left to their own devices, people can't be trusted. Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | September 9, 2009
Email marketing is an easy yet powerful tool in bringing home a huge volume of traffic to your website, and email opens doors to many marketing opportunities. But a new study shows that companies are not taking full advantage of their email campaigns. Read more »
Guest Blogger | September 8, 2009
Warning: Default decisions and actions, although seductive when chosen and not always easy to recognize, can be lethal to your success. First, perhaps it's best to define default. It occurs when you have chosen--operative word, chosen--not to make a decision or take an action that would help you move forward in achieving what you want in business, in your career, or in your personal life. Many companies lose market viability because of a default mind-set that results in default behavior. Read more »
Guest Blogger | September 4, 2009
I know, most people hate hype. In a post-bubble economy, hype it's a four letter word. But I love it. I'm no advocate of projecting unrealistic expectations on every new, shiny thing. But, hype can be used for good. Hype is a marketer's dream. It takes advantage of our human inclination toward curiosity about the new and unusual. Hype can give a brand enough exposure to sustain it until it can stand on its merits, build a reputation, and move Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | September 3, 2009
Companies today are challenged with how to make operations efficient while delivering value to the customer. The answer to both of these customer management questions hinges upon effective collection, analysis, and deployment of your organization's customer feedback. Read more »
Guest Blogger | September 2, 2009
This Monday I had a series of calls with marketers evaluating campaign management solutions. After the economic slowdown I am starting to see a steady renewal of interest in marketing technologies. The questions ranged from: "How is campaign management different from marketing automation?" to "How much do the various modules cost to implement?" to "What's the on-demand market look like?". But by far the most commonly asked question was about the integration of outbound (batch) and inbound (real-time in the Read more »
Guest Blogger | September 2, 2009
In Management Rewired, Charles S. Jacobs tells us that brain science has confirmed what many of us have long suspected: We each live in a reality of our own making. As Jacobs points out, this isn't just a philosophical issue; it impacts the way we do business. Arrogantly (or innocently) assume that your customers experience the world in the same way that you do, and you'll find your actions unlikely to produce the results you expect. We all talk about Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | September 2, 2009
If you've read an article on 1to1media.com recently, you may have used the "share" button that allows you to re-post the story on sites such as Digg, LinkedIn, Mixx, Reddit, and Twitter. This sharing feature, and its accompanied list of social media websites, is common in today's online world. Nearly all news sites, and many e-commerce sites, give customers the option to share content with friends. In the past few months, though, I've noticed that on more and more sites Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | August 31, 2009
Microsoft has never had a customer-focused reputation. Like a bull in a china shop, it uses its market share to ram new programs and operating systems into the marketplace. No more was this more evident than with Microsoft Vista, the operating system no one seems to like. Microsoft forced its hardware partners and enterprise customers to install it, even though most were perfectly happy with XP. Now, as Windows 7 prepares for its launch, Microsoft is taking steps to address Read more »
Ginger Conlon | August 28, 2009
Many pundits agree that the B2B and B2C customer experiences have a great deal in common. After all, ultimately, a person is buying something--whether for himself or his company--so has a vested interest in that product or service meeting expectations. With few exceptions (like financial services) the commonalities diverge when it comes to long-term customer relationships. Sure, some B2C consumers want "relationships" with their favorite brands. They want special offers, unique experiences, in-depth information, and the like. They want their Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | August 27, 2009
Starting next month, AT&T has instituted a new policy requiring all smartphone (BlackBerry, iPhone, etc...) subscribers to purchase a monthly data plan (for $30). While the vast majority of these customers would subscribe to a data plan anyway, there are some people out there who buy the phone for show, because of its 'cool factor' and don't use all of its features. Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | August 26, 2009
People who volunteer in their community give one of life's most precious gifts -- their time. Once a year employees at 1to1 Media give their time by spending the day volunteering at a local children's community center. Yesterday we painted, scrubbed, and organized the building's classrooms so that the children can return to clean rooms in the fall. Read more »
Guest Blogger | August 26, 2009
Sounds simple right? Most marketers would say that they use some notion of value when they target customers. I think there's more to this topic. First, most marketers use likelihood of response as a predictor far more often than value. A recent conversation with Tim Suther of Acxiom got me thinking about targeting techniques. Here's my take: Generally most marketers have three approaches to onsite targeting: Read more »
Don Peppers | August 25, 2009
As the social Web continues to gain traction, with millions of individuals now making individual contributions, one thing that frustrates businesses is the problem of making sense of all this noise. Because that's all it is, unless you can detect patterns in these billions of individual posts, tweets, text messages, and comments. It is a giant, flowing river of information, but it's impossible to get any sense of a river's current by examining it one drop at a time. Read more »
Guest Blogger | August 25, 2009
Both business and consumers have bad assumptions about the service process. When the two perspectives collide we get the current train wreck of customer service. When companies and consumers change their assumptions, the experience is dramatically improved. Here are six assumptions that most business wrongly hold and three misperceptions that consumers have: Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | August 24, 2009
Last week I spoke to a registered user to our site who was not receiving our email newsletter, 1to1 Weekly. After some searching, we realized that her account was linked to an old email address. And when I say old, I mean old. It was an "erols.com" address, which is a company that died along with the dial-up modem. This is one example of how data can get away from you pretty easily, even at a company that proactively stays Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | August 20, 2009
The rise of social media has brought with it a new class of customers/entrepreneurs: mommy bloggers. They began writing about their children, relationships, and shopping trips, but soon evolved into a word-of-mouth marketing machine. Earlier this year I wrote about just how powerful the mom market had become, due in large part to the throng of bloggers reviewing products, writing about their experiences as customers, and taking down brands they felt were dishonest or unsafe. It seems some of that Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | August 19, 2009
This week Pittsburgh became the first city to launch a 311 "iBurgh" application for smart phones so citizens can catalog complaints by snapping photos of nuisances like graffiti and then send the photos to city hall. Read more »
Guest Blogger | August 19, 2009
So you might be wondering: When most companies have barely put their toe in the "social media waters," how could deploying a customer service social media initiative have become a business transformation tool? I have to say, it stunned me. But the data is there. Some of you who know me know I used to be a scientist--the whole white lab coat and all. So I am akin to data. I like trends and patterns. But when I started my Read more »
Guest Blogger | August 18, 2009
We got an interesting piece of mail recently. The return "address" was just the logo of an upscale catalog retailer of women's clothing. "Check Enclosed" was printed prominently above our address. Opening the mailer revealed a check for $10. On the back, a lot of text above the endorsement line informed us that, by cashing the check, we were agreeing to a 30-day trial of a roadside assistance service, and that a $15.99 monthly fee would be automatically charged to Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | August 17, 2009
I recently had the pleasure of interviewing three CRM experts about social CRM for a 1to1 Media video. Paul Greenberg, Brent Leary, and Bill Band shared their views on what social CRM's role is in a larger customer strategy, and how companies can avoid the pitfalls that were common during the first go-round of CRM implementations. Companies and customers have changed, and social CRM should now be an integral part of a company's customer strategy. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | August 14, 2009
We all know the classic John Wanamaker quote, "Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is, I don't know which half." Unfortunately, not much has changed. According to Tim Suther, senior vice president of multichannel marketing service for Acxiom, about $112 billion of advertising spending is considered wasted each year in the United States alone. That equates to about 47 percent of the total advertising dollars spent, Suther said during his presentation last week at Acxiom's Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | August 13, 2009
I felt like Ed Montague earlier this week (non-baseball fans please Google his name). For the third time in less than 3 months I was dealing with Wachovia customer service, and they swung and missed yet again. They were a checked-swing away from losing me as a customer, but fortunately some good may have come out of it. I'll backtrack a bit to explain. Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | August 12, 2009
There's no doubt about it: Social media is having a significant impact in the workplace--good or bad. Last week some NFL teams restricted players from using social sites in an effort to block broadcasting of league memos. And the Few, the Proud, the Marines were also stopped last week from using social media to prevent critical information from being viewed by adversaries. While still a fixture in corporations based on the benefits of enhancing relationships with customers, new evidence shows Read more »
Guest Blogger | August 11, 2009
Rolling sustainability into business development isn't just a marketing ploy. In the CRM arena it's an effective way to communicate with more customers and prospects at a lower cost. Last summer, when a gallon of regular peaked above four dollars per gallon, Beagle Research published a white paper on sustainability and CRM. I am happy to report that there are many signs in CRM and elsewhere of industries taking the first steps toward more sustainable business. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | August 7, 2009
Consumers today are sick and tired of marketing; they feel that most marketing is irrelevant to them. This is the reality that marketers are faced with today, said Forrester Research principal analyst Dave Frankland during a presentation earlier this week at Acxiom's Global Marketing Performance event in New York. Frankland went on to describe how dire the situation is for marketers: Consumers think they receive too many marketing communications, he said, adding that relevancy is a major issue. According to Read more »
Guest Blogger | August 6, 2009
My 3 ½ year old son loves the Pixar movie Cars. Ok, I admit it, I love it too. It's a feel-good story with lots of lessons, great animation and, of course, cars. Few are the movies that one can watch over and over and not get bored. The first time I saw the movie I took in the story and chuckled over a few predictable lines like Sally's offer of a "free Lincoln Continental breakfast" if visitors decide to Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | August 6, 2009
What could customer service representatives learn from calling other companies' customer service departments? A lot. CNBC recently did a story about loan-modification officers who spent frustrating hours on the phone with banks' call centers, fighting with agents who were overworked or just didn't care enough to help them find answers. I guarantee the loan-modification officers were a lot nicer on the phone when their customers called them after experiencing that call center hell first-hand. Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | August 5, 2009
Companies have been concerned with data quality in their organizations for some time, but a recent report makes it abundantly clear that the problem isn't going away. In fact, companies still find it a major challenge to maintain accurate data. Pitney Bowes Business Insight, a provider of data quality and location intelligence solutions, and Silver Creek Systems, a provider of automated data mastering, yesterday announced the findings of a co-sponsored report "The State of Data Quality Today." Read more »
Guest Blogger | August 4, 2009
Social CRM has been one of the most talked about topics in the CRM and social media industries. Yet many companies are still are struggling with basic CRM challenges. While they work to effectively define their strategy an 800-pound gorilla has slipped into the room. This 800-pound gorilla--the social customer--does not take away the need for an effective CRM 1.0 strategy. But organizations must address customers' social CRM expectations using an sCRM approach that compliments their CRM strategy. Throw social Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | August 3, 2009
While I was at last week's Customer UNinterrupted conference in San Francisco, I had a chance to have dinner with a few of our 1to1 Customer Champions and Customer Award winners. Representing financial services, wireless telecom and retail, the three executives I dined with had great perspective and shared many customer challenges. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | July 31, 2009
Understanding customers delivers a competitive advantage. The more you know about your customers, the more you can provide them with products, services, content, and communications specific and relevant to them--consequently increasing all the good stuff: revenue, profitability, loyalty, recommendations, and the like. What's more, the more you know about your customers that your competitors don't know, and the more you use that information to deliver all those relevant, useful products, services, content, and communications that your competitors can't because they Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | July 30, 2009
Imagine my surprise when I saw 2008 1to1 Customer Champion Chris Zane on my television screen the other day! He and his Zane's Cycles store are featured in the new American Express Open Forum small business commercial. Way to go Chris! Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | July 30, 2009
If anything can derail social media's rise, it's a lack of authenticity. The power of social sites is the ability to connect people, but often those connections are anonymous. Many sites only require an authentic email address to create a profile; any information entered after that isn't verified. That's the way it should be; you shouldn't have to provide a social security number or a photo ID to post content online, but when people abuse the system it hurts everyone. Read more »
Guest Blogger | July 29, 2009
Something rather amazing happened this week in the Web Analytics realm that was enabled by social media. A longstanding conversation regarding all things Web analytics has been playing out in Twitter under the hashtag #wa. [If confused by this already, you may want to drop off here.] Recently, Washington state has jumped on the Twitter bandwagon and was creating "noise" on #wa. Thus, a number of Tweets ensued to shift the conversation from #wa to something we Web Analytics wonks Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | July 29, 2009
These days it seems as though retailers across all industries are relying heavily on price promotions to ramp up business and retain existing customers. I've seen offers from $399 roundtrip airfare and hotel to Ireland, to my cell phone service provider offering a month of free service. Read more »
Guest Blogger | July 27, 2009
I'm staring at a blank document on my computer screen, asking myself, "What is verbal branding?" Then it occurs to me: as I type, I'm expressing a perspective in carefully selected words and phrases and sentences. I'm paying attention to grammar here and willfully ignoring it there. I'm stringing thoughts together. I'm creating a rhythm. I'm defining a voice--and a personality behind that voice. But to answer my original question, we need to take a step back. A brand is, Read more »
Don Peppers | July 25, 2009
This morning I went running in Pasadena, re-doing the very lovely 5-mile route I did on Wednesday, but I set off at my training pace this time. Now I'm a fairly fast middle-distance runner, and I've been running all my life. High school and college cross country teams, too. But on this run, around two miles into it, some kid passed me. Damn. NO ONE passes me on a run. I pass other people on my runs. Other people don't Read more »
Ginger Conlon | July 24, 2009
Ah, buzzwords. We all use them. We all love to hate them. What got me thinking about buzzwords (again) was an article I came across on "viralsourcing," which BusinessWeek writer Ben Kunz defines as a combination of crowdsourcing and viral marketing. So, in essence, a buzzword based on yet another buzzword. Sigh. OK, I get it. Buzzwords and buzz phrases are an easy way to capture the essence of a thing in one or two words (and, admittedly, I use Read more »
Don Peppers | July 24, 2009
I'm in Pasadena for the three days of Fortune Magazine's "Brainstormtech" conference, featuring speakers from many different companies, usually making their presentations in an interview or talk-show format that also involves a Fortune reporter or editor. On the whole, I found this to be a very effective format for putting across insights and information. My role here, however, is not to give a speech - which is why I end up attending most conferences I attend. Instead, I've been retained Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | July 23, 2009
First other countries were taking manufacturing jobs, then computers began replacing white-collar jobs; now could volunteers be the reason you're unemployed? Don't laugh, it's possible. LinkedIn recently asked translators who use its website if they'd be interested in translating pages into other languages for the site's international audience. The survey it sent the translators listed possible compensation, but none of the choices were monetary. LinkedIn's response when the translators were outraged was essentially "there's someone out there who will do Read more »
Guest Blogger | July 22, 2009
I've had a number of interesting debates on who should lead the customer social media interaction in the last few weeks. In part, this question comes up because a great deal of social media was initiated in the Marketing department via listening or brand sentiment programs. What we do know is that all departments benefit -- marketing, sales, service, product dev, engineering from the voice of the customer information that results from deploying social media. And while I know that Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | July 22, 2009
Dear Yellow Pages, I came home from work last night to find that your company is still delivering unsolicited directories on my door step. As someone who hasn't had a land line or used a phone book since 2000, these books are useless to me. Like I do every year, I walk directly to the recycling bin and toss them. Read more »
Guest Blogger | July 21, 2009
Industry analysts share an important trait with crows: We are often attracted to shiny things. Novelty both keeps our jobs interesting and allows us to stay ahead of the curve. That view of the world may perpetually give us a role in helping to future-proof enterprises, but it also makes it easy to lose sight of the day-to-day experience of consumers and the companies that serve them. Of late, analysts and other pundits have focused a huge amount of attention Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | July 20, 2009
To stand out in the competitive marketplace, marketers need to to use every advantage they can. In the busy mall food court, Cinnabon knows this very well. Its strategy is to use "aroma-based marketing" to lure hungry consumer to its bakery. Read more »
Don Peppers | July 19, 2009
Did you see Sacha Baron Cohen's new movie "Bruno" yet? If not, you can probably save your money. That's the judgment of John Horn, movie critic and journalist for the LA Times, speaking on NPR's All Things Considered. Why? Because this movie may already have been killed by negative WOM. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | July 17, 2009
If you read my blog posts with any regularity, you know that I'm not shy about outing companies for their poor customer experiences. So in a case of quid quo pro I feel obligated to share a missed opportunity. Read more »
Don Peppers | July 16, 2009
I constantly hear from B2B executives that it's a challenge to develop strong relationships between the B2B sales staff and clients. But it doesn't have to be. Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | July 16, 2009
Last month, in a post titled "Social Media ROI?" I alluded to analyst reports that would define the metrics used to value social media interactions. The most anticipated one, from Natalie Petouhoff from Forrester, was released earlier this month. I'm working on a story that will feature her and many others talking about how to measure interactions on social networks, blogs, and the like (due out in September in the Fall issue of 1to1 Magazine. Read more »
Guest Blogger: Bruce Temkin | July 15, 2009
Google recently created quite a stir when it introduced its new operating system (OS), Chrome OS. Here's how Google describes its new OS: Speed, simplicity and security are the key aspects of Google Chrome OS. We're designing the OS to be fast and lightweight, to start up and get you onto the web in a few seconds. My take: Will Chrome OS destroy Microsoft? No. Will Chrome shake up the PC market? Yes; especially when it comes to customer experience. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | July 14, 2009
Many of the marketers who want to capture the power of social media struggle with how best to do so. According to Lon Safko, these marketers need to rethink their approach. "They're not looking at it holistically," says Safko, author of The Social Media Bible. "They're looking at it as individual tools. Instead they should consider social media as a new tool set that they should integrate with their traditional marketing efforts. Then create a holistic strategy." Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | July 13, 2009
In this time of economic instability, companies are being super cautious with their funds. The marketing organization's belt has become especially tight, with marketers only investing in activities they know will work and show value. It's understandable, but in today's competitive marketplace relying too much on traditional practices may hurt in the long run. Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | July 9, 2009
We've been hearing about both for many years, but so far everyone is still left wondering when the technology will hit the mainstream. Unlike the flying car, cell phone payment systems already exist in many parts of the world; they just haven't caught on in the U.S. So when will this elusive advancement catch on, allowing you to carry only one device and ditch the plastic? Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | July 8, 2009
Think you know what your customers want? Think again. In a new book All Customers Are Irrational, author William J. Cusick contends that customers are completely irrational, with 95 percent of the decision-making process occurring in the irrational subconscious. As a result, Cusick maintains that customers don't make clear-headed logical choices, which makes predicting what they do in the future impossible. Read more »
Guest Blogger | July 7, 2009
Every time I speak at a conference, at least one person approaches me with a version of the classic, "What should the average handle time be for calls from banking customers in the Midwest?" The person asking is seeking a magic bullet number to prove to his boss that his customer service operation is beating the best practices out there. Often my response is, "You are asking the wrong question." What you should ask is what your measurements say about Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | July 6, 2009
Yesterday the Yankees won for the 10th time in 12 games. It's an impressive run, and many Yankee fans are excited that they are almost caught up to the Red Sox. But once again the customer experience at Yankee Stadium let me down, and I'm not sure I want to return until the stadium staff changes its policies. Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | July 2, 2009
I was at a Verizon store today for service on my phone, which stopped working yesterday. Normally from what I hear the associates there are fairly helpful (they've been average at best the few times I've been there), but today that definitely wasn't the case. Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | July 1, 2009
For the entire month of June, I drove a rental car while my own vehicle was getting repaired. I rented from Enterprise Rent-A-Car and wrote about my initial experience in this blog. Read more »
Jennifer Munsey | June 30, 2009
I attended the Forrester Customer Experience forum in NYC on June 22 and was particularly impressed by the speech keynote speaker Wayne Peacock of USAA gave. Peacock is the executive vice president of Enterprise Business Operations at USAA. Read more »
Guest Blogger | June 30, 2009
Some companies call them "office of the chairman" accounts, while others simply refer to them as key clients. These are the flagship clients that propel your growth in good times and provide essential ballast in a downturn. They are broad and deep, transcending any one individual or service offering. Usually, they endure for years. These trusted partnerships account for a disproportionate share of most firms' revenues, profits, and intellectual capital. An archetypical example is Booz Allen Hamilton's 70-year relationship with Read more »
Don Peppers | June 29, 2009
In the last few days I've met with two airlines and discussed with each what we consider to be "best practices" for frequency marketing programs. I also got a personal experience, courtesy of British Airways, in "worst practices" for frequent flyer programs. In Martha's and my opinion, the best frequency marketing programs (whether for airlines or other firms) have five qualities: Insight, modularity, openness, customer management, and simplicity. Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | June 29, 2009
I've heard a new term coined that I think will catch on...social customer service. It's the practice of using social media for customer service purposes. But I've always thought customer service is supposed to have a social aspect to it if it's going to be useful. To me, social media is just another platform that companies can use to connect with customers. It shouldn't be considered separate from "regular" customer service. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | June 26, 2009
Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz is known for his mantra that Starbucks is not in the coffee business, but instead is in the customer business serving coffee. Similarly, during his keynote presentation at the Forrester Research Customer Experience Forum 2009, Virgin America CEO and President David Cush said, "We're in a customer service business, not a moving airplanes around business." Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | June 25, 2009
Can there be only one dominant general-interest social network? It appears that question is closer to being answered after MySpace fired 30 percent of its US staff and a large number of international staff over the last week. But does that mean the site will fade into irrelevance? Does it mean MySpace's business model was flawed? Or is this just another step toward resurgence? Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | June 24, 2009
Know the customer. It's a mantra that has been repeated and implemented by companies in recent years. Lately, that mantra is not only being used to deliver tailored experiences to customers, but also to ensure concise merchandising. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | June 23, 2009
It's a given--especially in the current economy--that customers want the best value for their money. The catch, however, is that different customers define value differently. For some, value equates with product functionality or brand image; for many, though, it means price. Heavily price-focused customers can create a heady challenge for businesses. Read more »
Guest Blogger | June 23, 2009
Recently I switched insurance companies after being with the same company for more than 20 years. Several times over the years I had considered shopping around, looking for a better rate and service. I guess you could say I either got comfortable or maybe I was just too lazy to make the switch. Before finally shopping around I made a customer experience list of pros and cons to help me decide if I should stay or leave. My list looked Read more »
Ginger Conlon | June 23, 2009
"Although your customers may be buying less, they care about how you treat them even more." So said Bruce Temkin, a Forrester vice president and principal analyst, during his keynote yesterday morning at the Forrester Research Customer Experience Forum 2009. Temkin likened the customer experience journey to Dorothy's travel to Oz, explaining that success comprises three elements: Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | June 22, 2009
We've come a long way from the soda jerk at the corner candy store. As reported in Information Week last week, Coca-cola will provide some fast-food restaurants with a soda dispenser with 100 varieties of soda, juice, tea, and flavored waters. Read more »
Martha Rogers | June 18, 2009
When I was 14, my father was the half owner of a red-and-white Cessna 150, a 4-seater single engine airplane that had wings above the passengers. When other teenage girls were spending Saturdays on their nails and hair, I was in the co-pilot seat learning to fly. Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | June 18, 2009
The biggest challenge with adoption of social media technologies and strategies is that it's taking a shot in the dark. No one knows exactly what impact an initiative will have (anyone who told you they knew in the past year or two was lying). Recently I've spoken with a few researchers who claim to have cracked the code. Read more »
Jennifer Munsey | June 18, 2009
I attended a webinar on Wednesday, June 17 on the Texas Credit Union and how they have teamed up with technology programs to get a better sense of customer feedback and how they can improve their current system. Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | June 17, 2009
For years, predicting customers' behavior involved a lot of guesswork. Today, the economy is changing the way customers act and companies must be responive and cognizant of those changes. During yesterday's Engage Summit, sponsored by Allegiance, Gary Rhoads, co-founder of Allegiance, said he sees a growing interest in predictive analytics. Companies no longer want to be reactive--they want to uncover relationships with their customers. Read more »
Guest Blogger | June 16, 2009
Zappos.com, the biggest online shoe store, celebrated its 10th anniversary in May. Sales were over $1 billion in 2008. Not bad for a company that had more than its share of doubters when it launched in 1999. One key to Zappos' success is its ability to listen to customers. Almost everyone at the company faces the customer, yet no one is provided a script of what to say. This "no scripts" policy benefits Zappos in many ways: Read more »
Ginger Conlon | June 12, 2009
How important is customer experience? Very--and growing in value daily as an increasing number of companies find ways to connect improvements in customer experience to increases in business performance. I recently spoke with Bruce Temkin, vice president, principal analyst, and Harley Manning, vice president, research director, of Forrester Research, about the research firm's upcoming Customer Experience Forum 2009 to get a sneak peak at what they'll be sharing at the event that will get people thinking about their own customer Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | June 11, 2009
Have you seen the new GM commercial? I saw it for the first time about a week ago, and wasn't sure at first what to think of it. To give context to my comments, it's posted here. Read more »
Don Peppers | June 11, 2009
There is a very nice "conversation starter" essay on McKinsey's site today regarding the fact that natural disasters and economic cycles seem to occur with the same kind of frequency and intensity. The actual pattern isn't a normal distribution (the kind of bell curve that we all studied in statistics) but a "power law distribution" - which means, essentially, that there is a "long tail" of outliers. In a power law distribution an event that is twice as severe, for Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | June 10, 2009
During one of the breaks at yesterday's Incentive2Innovate conference hosted by The Xprize Foundation and held at the United Nations, I asked an editor of a green technologies magazine sitting next to me whether or not he found the content useful. The editor responded, "Quite frankly, this is over my head." He, like many people, assume innovation is just technology when, in fact it's organizationally and culturally driven. Read more »
Guest Blogger | June 9, 2009
Having just read Ken Roman's excellent biography of David Ogilvy, The King of Madison Avenue, and subsequently reread Ogilvy's Confessions of an Advertising Man and Ogilvy on Advertising, I can attest that while some of the mediums may be dated, the fact remains that Ogilvy based his and his agency's success on being relevant to the customer. He used research learned from working for Dr. George Gallup and instigated voice of the customer (VOC), on which he tested and based Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | June 8, 2009
Last week I spoke with Maritz Vice President of Marketing Chris Gaia about virtual event strategy. What was once only thought of as an option for the high-tech sector has come to the mainstream. It's a networking channel that can't be ignored. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | June 5, 2009
When Jeff Hayzlett joined Eastman Kodak Company three years ago, the imaging company was in the midst of a transformation. As the newly appointed CMO Hayzlett needed to refocus the company's marketing efforts to correspond with those changes. During his keynote presentation early this week at Marketing World 2009: A Frost & Sullivan Executive MindXchange, Hayzlett shared some insight into his approach. Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | June 4, 2009
There's a fine line between catering to a niche customer group and creating a different experience that essentially says, "Here's a nice, easy way for you to understand what we do, since you wouldn't grasp what we provide like our other customers." Recently, two companies waved goodbye to that line as they crossed it by creating female-driven experiences that are insensitive at best and demeaning at worst. Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | June 3, 2009
When dealing with customer service, I think many customers have been conditioned over the years to not expect the unexpected. I'm one of the jaded masses. So when I received a double whammy of exceptional service yesterday with both Progressive Insurance and Enterprise Rent-A-Car, I was so impressed that I shared the experience with anyone who would listen and now in this blog with you. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | June 2, 2009
Sometimes building a one-to-one relationship with customers takes two--partners, that is. That was the case for New York Life when the insurer wanted to reach out to women and position itself as their insurance and financial services preferred provider. According to Barbara Cerf, corporate vice president, the company wanted an expert partner to reach that market; one that would be willing to take a non-traditional approach to achieve a "wow" factor that would help transform its marketing efforts into closed Read more »
Ginger Conlon | May 29, 2009
Should email marketing be more mature by now? Some industry experts think so. But many marketers are still drawn to the ease of blasting to a broad audience, instead of targeting for maximum impact among those most likely to respond. At a recent Responsys customer summit I had the opportunity to chat with several executives who are focused on the latter. Here's a bit of what they had to say: Read more »
Don Peppers | May 28, 2009
Chaotics is the title of Philip Kotler's new book, co-authored with John Caslione. Fundamentally, it is a book of lists - seven factors that can cause chaos in the business environment, 10 innovation mistakes to avoid, three behaviors to ensure a new mindset, eight questions to create an "early warning system," four escalating levels of complexity, eight steps to more effective scenario planning, ten practices to weather extended periods of turbulence, four key changes in the marketing landscape, five components Read more »
Ginger Conlon | May 22, 2009
There are two main schools of thought on how to tackle current economic conditions: hunker down or charge ahead. "These are two sides of the same coin," said Ram Menon, executive vice president, worldwide marketing, for Tibco Software, when we talked earlier this week. "Marketing will get cut. Everything will. Take that as an opportunity to do better. Everything can be done better." Menon, who was in New York to speak at a CMO Club event, explained that viewing current Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | May 21, 2009
You may not have heard of Bonobos, but the company is creating a lot of buzz for its fresh marketing, unique customer service, and its approach to selling in general. Bonobos specializes in men's pants that fit tighter than their competitors'. Just a few of the policies that make the company stand-out: Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | May 20, 2009
Companies struggle with finding ways to sustain profitable growth in the current economy. Much of the analysis has been around developing better competitive strategies by imagining the future, adapting to change, and creating innovation. At Verint System's user conference in Las Vegas last week, I spoke to Daniel Ziv, vice president, Customer Interaction Analytics at Verint Witness Actionable Solutions, about how companies are managing the challenges of doing more with less in their contact centers. "The economy is changing the Read more »
Guest Blogger | May 19, 2009
One of the most common questions being asked right now is this: "What should my company do about social media?" As more and more businesses are jumping in and creating corporate profiles on sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and flickr, marketers are feeling the pressure to jump on the bandwagon. Some of these marketers plan to use social media as a cool set of tools to build awareness about their company. However, it is much more than that. Social media Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | May 18, 2009
What does it take to be a Chief Marketing Officer? The CMO Council surveyed 4,000 members to discern some common attributes. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | May 15, 2009
1to1 recently conducted its 2009 Voice of the Customer Survey. We asked the question: What is the most surprising thing you learned from customer feedback in the past year? I found some of the responses, well, surprising. What do you think? Here's what some respondents had to say: Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | May 14, 2009
How important is it for employees to be nice? Customers find a welcoming environment more engaging and are more loyal to companies whose culture appeals to them, but what affect does employees' niceness have on the bottom line? Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | May 13, 2009
According to the CMO Council's latest study "Protection From Brand Infection" released on Monday, marketers are under siege. Not by a burgeoning economic decline, but by sophisticated counterfeiters, or brand hijackers who are sabotaging companies' brands. The study found that these counterfeit groups are increasingly selling brand fakes and frauds, which is putting pressure on marketers to fight back. Read more »
Guest Blogger | May 12, 2009
Everybody keeps talking about the economy and how bad it is. Call me crazy, but I think it's one of the best things that ever happened to customer service. Why? For years, those of us in customer service have been asking corporations to pay attention to the customer, to be customer centric. Much of this has fallen on deaf ears. Some companies have taken it seriously, but when you ask customers, they don't think companies are taking it seriously. The Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | May 11, 2009
It's amazing to me that in this economy, where supply outnumbers demand and customers are very choosy about where they spend money, that many retailers still look to short-term discounts to woo customers. Business experts everywhere emphasize the importance of customer retention and loyalty, but retailers, even those with loyalty programs, need to rethink their loyalty strategy. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | May 8, 2009
PetSmart wants to help "pet parents" enhance their relationship with their pets. According to Erica Thompson, vice president of CRM and Internet strategy for the retailer, the best way to do is through data. "You have to unleash data to the people who can use it," she said during a session at Forrester's Marketing Forum 2009. "Don't guard the data. The relationship is not with me and the data or the corporation and the data; it's with the frontline folks Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | May 7, 2009
Yesterday, Mila D'Antonio wrote about the Consumerist's contest for the worst company in America, which was down to the final two. Today, the site announced AIG had won the prize, voted worst by more than 64 percent of respondents. It couldn't happen to a more deserving company. Unfortunately, the taxpayers now own a big chunk of the worst company in America. How would you have voted? The final four were Ticketmaster, AIG, Bank of America, and Comcast. Feel free to Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | May 6, 2009
Disgusted by the AIG bonus scandal or Bank of America's executive compensation packages? Tired of Ticketmaster's shady customer service practices? And Comcast customers, no words can describe what you are feeling. Read more »
Guest Blogger | May 4, 2009
Don't look now, but there's a new toy in your loyalty sandbox. Twitter has quickly progressed from an interesting fad to a one-to-one medium: Leading brands from Zappos to Jetblue to Whole Foods Markets (among many others) are tweeting to thousands of customers to send out real-time information, closing the loop with individuals and finding out what their advocates--and detractors--are saying about their brands today. Full disclosure: I am a customer experience professional, but very new to the Twitter world. Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | May 4, 2009
Grade: B. Comments: Plays well with others, but needs to improve communication skills. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | May 1, 2009
Maybe it's just me, but I thought the current trend was to find ways to be easier to do business with. Not so at Major League Baseball's New York Mets. With the team's new stadium, Citi Field, came a new--overly complicated--seat pricing structure and purchase process. I'm sure if you're buying season tickets or even package plans, the ticket-buying experience is fine. And, hey, if the Mets consider customer value primarily in terms of dollars spent on package ticket sales Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | April 30, 2009
I've been working on a story for the Summer issue of 1to1 Magazine about companies that offer online chat as a sales or service channel. Some of the research I've come across suggests that while customer adoption of chat is growing (especially among younger generations). However, everyone I've talked to says phone will remain the dominant communications channel indefinitely. Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | April 29, 2009
Some days it seems like we're in meeting hell, with meetings consuming our days and leaving us with the feeling that we've accomplished little or nothing. Meetings should be productive, increase enthusiasm, and motivate employees to higher performance levels. Read more »
Martha Rogers | April 29, 2009
If you sent in your shoes for repair lately to Allen Edmonds Recrafting, you'd shortly get an email with the subject heading "Remember These?" In Port Washington, Wisconsin, you'll find a shop of contradictions. It's a big/little shoe repair shop, very high touch and high tech, with old and new ideas about how to serve customers best. Read more »
Guest Blogger | April 28, 2009
Whenever I have lectured on the most advanced technologies in developing marketing relationships, I like to tell a story. Once, my wife and I had cappuccino in Mr. Coffee, an outlet of a Japanese chain close to Shanghai's famous "food street." After the waitress took our order, she left as quietly as she had arrived. After a while, my wife shivered slightly. It was an instinctive reaction; she was barely conscious of it. In a second the waitress was behind Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | April 27, 2009
In 2007 1to1 Media honored Laree Daniel as one of its 1to1 Customer Champions. The Customer Champions program recognizes executives who promote customer centricity within their organizations, creating a culture that's focused on the customer. We reunited with Daniel in this week's 1to1 Weekly article about Aflac's customer and employee strategy. Her approach to customers and employees hasn't changed even though she has changed companies. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | April 24, 2009
As I write--and post--this blog, I'm in an airplane, 32,000 feet above the Eastern Seaboard. It's a great ending to a two-day trip to Orlando to attend Forrester's Marketing Forum 2009, which, cooincidentally, focused heavily on innovation. As a tech-loving business traveler, I appreciate any amenity that makes staying productive and connected easier. This includes something as simple as the selection of outlet types (U.S., UK, and European) that the Royal Lancaster Hotel in London provides in the wall above Read more »
Ginger Conlon | April 23, 2009
Are you risk averse? Consider whether you would have done this: Chevrolet entered the Great Depression not by hunkering down, but by increasing its marketing spending - including inventing billboard advertising. The result was an increase in sales that catapulted the Chevy 6 to the number one seller for several years running. During her keynote presentation this morning at Forrester's Marketing Forum 2009, Vice President and Principal Analyst Shar VanBoskirk told that story to make a point: Don't think that Read more »
Ginger Conlon | April 23, 2009
Think it's time to cut back on that ad budget? Think again. According to the soon-to-be released Forrester Research Interactive Advertising Forecast, there's growth ahead for five key areas of online advertising: display, email, mobile, search, and social media. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | April 23, 2009
Recognizing that it operates in an industry known more for complaints received than compliments earned, JetBlue Airways continually looks for ways to differentiate itself. You've likely read a great deal about JetBlue's Customer Bill of Rights, onboard amenities, and friendly service. At the Forrester Marketing Forum earlier today JetBlue's senior vice president of marketing, Marty St. George, talked in detail about the airline's secret weapon: its employees, known as crewmembers. Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | April 23, 2009
When I began planning this blog entry last week, the ending looked very different. I was in the middle of a horrific customer service experience with Stubhub, not my favorite company in the world but one that sports fans must live with (especially if they live in the Northeast). I'd bought tickets for a Red Sox game a few weeks in advance, and with the game just a few days away the tracking system showed the seller hadn't shipped them Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | April 22, 2009
Who would want to work at a company with centralized power? That's a question that Clark Winter, the newly appointed Chief Investment Officer at SK Capital Partner, asked me when I spoke to him last week about company mandated policies that inhibit employees from acting in the best interest of the customer. Read more »
Guest Blogger | April 21, 2009
Even at what I consider to be an early stage, social media has penetrated so many niches that it is beginning to feel like, if not an old technology, a mature one. This was brought home to me recently when I realized that we now have technologies leveraging social networking concepts that play both offense and defense. I was intrigued by two ideas from opposite ends of the spectrum recently. The first, a study by Sector Intelligence on Passenger, a Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | April 20, 2009
Today is the first day of Frost & Sullivan's Customer Contact East conference, where contact center executives and customer relationship experts converge. This morning, Lynn Holmgren, national director of Whirlpool's customer care operations, shared some of her experiences. Her theme was to know your customers and understand their satisfaction threshold. She called it the "customer pissometer." Read more »
Ginger Conlon | April 17, 2009
We recently asked our 2009 1to1 Customer Champions that age-old question: What keeps you up at night? The 15 Champions (whom you'll "meet" in the summer issue of 1to1 Magazine) cited both unique and common concerns. I've summarized a few here: Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | April 16, 2009
During the recent retail bankruptcies, merchandise (and even the shelving, counters, and cash registers) was sold at huge discounts because "Everything Must Go!" However, one thing that couldn't be put on clearance under a bright yellow sign is the years of brand equity these stores had built. Even though the brand names weren't on sale, they transferred to the liquidation companies along with whatever knickknacks and display models couldn't be unloaded. So what's happening to the names Linens 'n Things, Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | April 15, 2009
I'll admit it. I'm addicted to American Idol. Ever since Kelly Clarkson won seven years ago, I still regularly tune in to see who Simon will offend or to catch Paula in a drunken stupor. Mostly I watch because I enjoy the performances of the young talent. Millions of viewers like me tune in year after year to watch for the same reasons. But Idol's appeal also stems from its ever-changing, adapting business model that listens to its customers. Read more »
Guest Blogger | April 14, 2009
Finding adjacent market spaces is an attractive way to grow. Adjacent markets are not too far away from your core business in terms of channels, technology, price point, brand, etc. Adjacent means: lying near, neighboring, having a common border, touchable. Although chasing adjacencies can be distracting, it is a much easier to sell internally. Adjacencies seem more achievable than far out, ethereal white-space opportunities. Adjacent markets are even more appealing when you apply a systematic innovation method to it. Giving Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | April 13, 2009
This recession has hit almost every part of the business world. White collar jobs as well as part-timers are seeing their hours cut or disappear altogether. Even last week's episode of 30 Rock highlighted the desperation of people trying to save their jobs (and straws). As companies cut across the board, how will it affect customer service? After all, the way companies can get through this mess is by strengthening their current customer relationships. But does that concept make it Read more »
Ginger Conlon | April 10, 2009
Ah, sales and marketing. Two teams, one goal: Inspire customers to buy. The stories are endless of how sales and marketing can't seem to get along, even though they share an objective so important it means the life or death of an organization. No customers, no company. The many tales of sales and marketing woes focus on their vast differences; salespeople are from Mars, marketers are from Venus, and all that. So I decided to take a closer look to Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | April 9, 2009
Filling out time-wasting surveys, quizzes, and questionnaires on sites like Facebook and MySpace might not be as innocent as you think. The little ads pop up everywhere, sometimes even "recommended" by friends, saying things like "how smart are you?" or "what's your real age?" Some are harmless, some are outright scams trying to sign people up for text alerts or spam email, and at least one is walking a fine line in-between. Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | April 8, 2009
It seems like a no-brainer: When people feel good about their jobs and are happy at work, their happiness is reflected in the quality of their work, resulting in greater productivity and ultimately happy customers. Read more »
Guest Blogger | April 7, 2009
Having front-line employees engaged with a caring attitude throughout all interactions with customers is vital not only to the success of an organization, but is also critical to the overall experience that customers so desperately want. Passion for what you do goes a long way to satisfy even the most disgruntled customer. Below are three recent examples of how important displaying a caring attitude and being engaged in the total customer care process is to the success of eHarmony. Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | April 6, 2009
There's no denying it's tough out there for America's workforce. Every week more layoff numbers are announced. It seems like everyone is in jeopardy, no matter what field your in or how well you do your job. In the corporate world, marketing departments are one of the high-profile areas that unfortunately seem to get unwanted attention during cost-cutting times. So what can marketers do? Read more »
Martha Rogers | April 2, 2009
The greatest cost to our economy in the present recession may not be the evaporation of wealth in the stock market or real estate deeds. It may be the shrinkage, violet-like, of any willingness to take a risk - any risk - even a good one. No venture in love, intellect, or business carries a guarantee. The difference between occasional smart, calculated failures and the kind we've seen lately in the headlines is the difference between doing one's homework, exercising Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | April 2, 2009
There are all sorts of unique promotions that make light of the economic downturn. Car companies are offering to make payments or take back vehicles if customers lose their job, home builders are offering similar deals, and cruises are offering free "layoff insurance." JetBlue is offering similar guarantees on ticket purchases, but it's the company's ad campaign making light of the economic turmoil that is getting more attention. Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | April 1, 2009
Customers are scarce and getting scarcer. This sounds familiar, but now more than ever does it hold true. And now more than ever do we need to stay focused on the customer. At IQPC's Customer Experience Summit yesterday in Chicago, audience members heard this message again and again. Another message was companies can't commit to delivering a good customer experience without investing in customer and employee engagement. Customer engagement is a part of the customer experience and a promising approach Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | March 30, 2009
Mobile phones are very personal devices. I bet most people would go back to get theirs if they accidentally left the house without them. And as new apps emerge and the technology expands, our reliance on mobile phones will only increase. For businesses, it's the perfect platform to create and maintain strong relationship strategy with customers. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | March 27, 2009
Successful marketers don't think like advertisers; they think like publishers, according to David Meerman Scott, author of World Wide Rave. They create a video, an e-book, a webinar, something that creates value for their customers. This approach is different than the ones taken by most marketers who advertise online. Marketers who think like publishers get attention, he says. One video will get 100 views versus another that will get 100,000. Why is that? Why do some blog posts get no Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | March 26, 2009
Search engines are very good at matching keywords, finding quoted snippets of text, and crawling for metadata. What Google, Yahoo!, MSN, and the rest aren't so good at is determining context of and relationships between phrases. Searching for "Apple" could mean Apple computers, Gwyneth Paltrow's daughter, or the fruit. A new kind of search engine from Financial Times, geared toward business people, takes online searching in a completely different direction. Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | March 25, 2009
Gartner reports that through 2012 more than 35 percent of the top 5,000 global companies will fail to make insightful decisions about significant changes in their business markets due to under investment in the information infrastructure and business user tools. Jim Davis, senior vice president and CMO at SAS, partly blames the misused and abused term of "analytics strategy." "When we look at analytics, there's no single definition, rather we have to define analytics on the spectrum capability," he said. Read more »
Guest Blogger | March 24, 2009
In light of the recent sudden and dramatic deterioration of the economic climate, what are the key developments driving CRM strategies and the adoption of enabling technologies now? I recently recorded a podcast summing-up my take on the situation, based on Forrester's latest research. Here's what I know: Locking-in customer loyalty through deeper engagement and differentiated experiences will continue as critical priorities. Six trends will drive CRM decision-making in 2009. Read more »
Don Peppers | March 23, 2009
I just returned from a nine-day trip to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Mixing vacation and business, I learned a lot about the business climate within the banking and telecom industries, as well as the actual climate and weather in Riyadh...sand storms and all. Watch my Peppers Unplugged video to learn more: Read more »
Ginger Conlon | March 20, 2009
I recently stayed at a Ritz-Carlton Hotel for the first time. It was just what I expected--and it wasn't. Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | March 19, 2009
It's usually gratifying when a company uses personalized messaging or event-based marketing to show it really knows you and wants to strengthen its relationship. But how does it feel when they miss that opportunity? Not so good. Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | March 18, 2009
I was surprised this week when I read that Tampa, FL-based Sykes Enterprises, an $819 million business process outsourcing company, decided to close its 12-year-old Minot, North Dakota contact center because of a lack of applicants for job openings. Read more »
Guest Blogger | March 17, 2009
I've been having a ponder about customers, especially now, in a lousy financial climate. That's the people like me who buy services and products from you. You have the opportunity to make us feel welcome in your world, or really unwelcome. Your brand can suck or soar. And so can your profits. Right now your focus ought to be on survival. Not corporate survival, personal survival! I'm your customer. Can you survive without me? Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | March 16, 2009
Tomorrow ABC News Chief Washington Correspondent George Stephanopoulos will conduct an interview with John McCain completely on Twitter. They are calling it a "Twitterview." As a journalist, the idea of keeping an interview subject's answers to 140 characters intrigues me, but I'm not sure how valuable the interview will be conducted within this type of platform. Read more »
Don Peppers | March 16, 2009
So far, the downturn we are encountering looks like a recession. It may be one of the more severe recessions in the last 50 years or so, but it's still only a recession, and not even close to turning into a genuine "depression," if you define that as a 10 percent or greater decline in GNP. We should all remember, however, that economic downturns are entirely natural events, and you can't prevent them any more than you can prevent ocean Read more »
Ginger Conlon | March 13, 2009
You've heard it a thousand times, but I'll say it again anyway: Customers today expect you to know who they are (i.e. understand their specific needs) and treat them accordingly (e.g. communicate with relevance). During a session at the Gartner CRM Summit UK, Furkan Ocal, a manager with Peppers & Rogers Group, reminded attendees about some of the important basics of gaining that customer knowledge. He offered four fundamental steps for customer segmentation that can help business leaders to better Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | March 12, 2009
Sometimes forgotten amid the news of stimulus packages, bailouts, mortgage meltdown, and market crash are the series of bankruptcies that have left big-box stores around the country vacant. In any other year, the failure of Circuit City, Linens n Things, and a number of other brands would be the top story of the day. These stories aren't getting the coverage they deserve, and the question of whether big retail chains can survive isnt being asked. Is it time we reconsider Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | March 11, 2009
Last week my husband John lost his cell phone in a New York City taxicab when it fell out of his pocket. Lucky for him, the cab driver didn't end up calling to blackmail him because of any lewd photos on the phone (a "30 Rock" reference, for those of you who don't watch the show). What ensued next was a systematic and surprising series of events. Read more »
Guest Blogger | March 9, 2009
We spend inordinate time and energy writing about the customer experience and how good experiences lead to customer loyalty and financial success. We have reinvented our approach to hiring staff to focus on the individual's "soft" people skills. We have spent many hours training our front-line staff on outstanding customer service techniques. We have constructed measurement systems and compensation models that reward or penalize the troops for customer satisfaction and loyalty. We have proselytized that CRM/customer experience management (CEM) is Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | March 9, 2009
Well, maybe they're just engaged. In today's lead 1to1 Weekly article, we discus the opportunities and advice for companies looking to integrate social media tools into their larger CRM strategy. It makes perfect sense as a strategy to learn about individual customers to create 360-degree view of the customer. There is still a way to go, however, before the two strategies meld. Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | March 5, 2009
Online reviews are common on companies' product pages, and on third-party sellers' sites, but what about a site created just to handle customer complaints, compliments, and other stories? That's the purpose of MeasuredUp, a customer-service social networking site that allows customers to post comments and allows companies to answer them, or partner with the network to leverage them. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | March 4, 2009
Gartner predicts that by 2011, online communities will directly influence one third of all consumer purchases, online and offline, up from 9 percent in 2008. Considering the potential impact of that change, marketers who haven't already done so should build a strategy for optimizing social media. Gene Alvarez, a Gartner research vice president, offered advice on social media optimization during his session this morning at the Gartner CRM Summit UK. Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | March 4, 2009
"It's not about rebuilding what we had in the past; it's about building what's sustainable in the future." That was a quote by Alcatel-Lucent CEO Ben Verwaayen at the Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise Forum 2009 today in Paris. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | March 4, 2009
Increasingly, senior executives believe they can differentiate on customer experience, but they face several challenges in turning that belief into reality, according to Ed Thompson, Gartner vice president and distinguished analyst. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | March 3, 2009
The future is moving away from enterprises owning the relationship to where customers own it. "The question is, how will companies respond?" asked Michael Maoz, a Gartner vice president and distinguished analyst, during a session this afternoon at the Gartner CRM Summit UK. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | March 3, 2009
What will CRM look like in 2020? Gartner analysts asked a keynote panel of industry vendor executives to weigh in. Gartner's Jim Davies, research director, and Ed Thompson, vice president, distinguished analyst, fired off several questions on CRM predictions to three vendor executives at this morning's keynote panel. The panelists: Brad Wilson, general manager, Microsoft Dynamics CRM; Woodson Martin, vice president, EMEA, Salesforce.com; and Steven Thurlow, CTO, Sword Ciboodle. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | March 3, 2009
"We're all on the edge of fear due to the current economic conditions," Mark Raskino, vice president and Gartner fellow, said during today's opening keynote. But like a roller coaster, there's also a thrill because of the potential for opportunity. "Everything is changing. Competitors are changing, customers are changing," Raskino said. "Our job is to reconsider what is really going on. What is the new normal? The way we used to do business, what we used to understand...is all likely Read more »
Guest Blogger | March 3, 2009
I've been working on an ROI model for customer service social media, i.e. online communities. As I gain insight into this new frontier, I am amazed. Why? From all the things that you've seen me write and talk about--and if you haven't, you may want to take a look or a listen to a couple--you know that I am B.I.G. on customer advocacy. The customers come first. Without them, there's no business to be worried about. Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | March 2, 2009
Last week guest blogger Liz Strauss had a great blog post about the power of social media to create and build relationships (or not). But when launching your own social media strategy, what sort of expectations should you have? At last week's Conference Board Customer Experience Management show, I found out. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | February 27, 2009
A common topic of conversation at 1to1 (not surprisingly!) is how much of a difference engaged employees make to the customer experience. I remember when Gap first opened a store in my neighborhood years ago. Its manager drew from the same pool of people as other stores in the neighborhood when first staffing the store; many of those retailers' associates were disinterested at best. Yet every employee in that Gap store was upbeat and helpful. The positive experience made you Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | February 26, 2009
What's the difference among Ford, GM, Chrysler, Toyota, and Honda? Not only the amount of bail-out money each did or didn't receive. Before the economic downturn, each company had built a brand (in the case of some, multiple brands to correspond with each product line) that connected with consumers. They also manufactured different types of cars, trucks, and SUV's. So which is more important to their survival: product or brand? Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | February 25, 2009
Anyone who watched CNN's coverage of the President's speech to Congress last night witnessed something that I believe companies will more readily leverage in 2009: the power of Facebook. Read more »
Guest Blogger | February 24, 2009
"When trust goes up, speed goes up and costs will go down." -- Stephen M.R. Covey, The Speed of Trust I met e-commerce and retailing expert Lauren Freedman for breakfast at the East Bank Club in Chicago recently. We met because of a 10 minute phone call in which I said that I see so many ways we should be working together. A guy named Jim Peake was the most likely reason she believed me. (More about him later.) Our Read more »
Ginger Conlon | February 23, 2009
Next week I'm off to Gartner's UK CRM Summit. Along with the European CRM Excellence Awards and several case studies, I'm looking forward to sessions on change management, customer experience, online communities, and trends in segmentation. The conference focuses on discussing ways to increase customer satisfaction, boost sales, and enhance up- and cross-selling. As a sneak preview, 1to1 arranged a conversation between Jim Davies, Research Director at Gartner and Don Peppers, cofounder of Peppers & Rogers Group, to discuss these Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | February 23, 2009
Congratulations to Slumdog Millionaire and all the other Academy Award winners. I also want to congratulate the producers of last night's show. Finally the awards program took into account the viewer experience, and created a show that was entertaining and moved along quickly. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | February 20, 2009
Collecting all the reams of customer data most companies gather today often can lead to unexpected--and useful--discoveries. Some respondents to the recent 1to1 Media 2009 Spring Data Survey, anonymously shared their most surprising discovery from customer data in the past year and what they did with the information: Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | February 19, 2009
Companies love metrics, our readers love metrics, and we love to report on metrics. But for metrics to have value, the numbers behind them need to mean something. An increased customer satisfaction score should mean an increase in customer satisfaction, but in reality it only means an increase in the score. Whether that correlates to increased satisfaction among customers depends on how the statistics are compiled and analyzed. In many cases, the tracking systems companies put in place are far Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | February 18, 2009
When Abrams Research asked more than 200 social media leaders which social media site they would pay to use and which ones they would recommend businesses pay to use, they got some interesting answers. Read more »
Guest Blogger | February 17, 2009
What's an RFID tag and why should I care? Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) is the combination of a tag on an item, and an "interrogator" at some known location. The interrogator sends out radio waves every few seconds. If an item with a tag gets close, the tag bounces back the radio waves, and twists them a bit to say, "Here I am and what I am." It's better than a bar code because you don't have to be able Read more »
Ginger Conlon | February 13, 2009
One common concern among executives today is ensuring that their organizations deliver an exceptional customer experience, whether that be through innovative products, equitable pricing, or stellar service. This is usually done as part of what's expected to be a profitable value exchange. For example: Company A sells a great product; engaged customers offer feedback. Organization B offers unmatched pricing; high-value customers spend more with that vendor to get the best deal. Business C delivers outstanding service; customers are equally respectful Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | February 12, 2009
Generally, offering customers more choices is a good thing, right? United Airlines doesn't agree, since the company announced that it was closing a call center in India that handled customer complaints and compliments. What does United suggest customers do instead of call? Write an email or letter. If you think this sounds backwards, you're not alone. Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | February 11, 2009
We're heard it many times of late: During these tough economic times, customer service is more important than ever. But with a steady stream of news about layoffs, how much of those cuts will affect customer service? Read more »
Guest Blogger | February 10, 2009
If business is all about relationships, how are you managing the "swirl" that is our economic climate today? And how are you measuring customer behavior and leveraging these insights to maximize your customer interactions in these heady times? Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | February 9, 2009
This weekend it was revealed that superstar baseball player Alex Rodriguez tested positive for steroids back in 2003. Even though he repeatedly denied it over the years, unsealed test results show that he and 103 other baseball players cheated their way to success. It's not too surprising, unfortunately, but since A-Rod has a 10-year contract with the NY Yankees, will it affect fan support of the team? Read more »
Ginger Conlon | February 6, 2009
Last night I went to the John Legend concert at Radio City Music Hall. During the final song there was a moment when evangelism and technology came together to support an important cause. Read more »
Don Peppers | February 5, 2009
In my latest video blog, I look at the peanut salmonella outbreak from a business perspective. Short-term thinking by Peanut Corp. of America led to catastrophic circumstances. Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | February 5, 2009
Over the past few months the American people have shelled out hundreds of billions of dollars to financial companies that got into trouble and went begging for a handout. What did we get in return? So far, some extravagancies like trips to Las Vegas, Monte Carlo, and the Bahamas have been canceled. CEO's at these companies can ONLY make $500,000 per year. Oh, and then there were those rate increases on card holders from Citi. Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | February 4, 2009
My last blog entry, which debated the methodology of tying Net Promoter Score to incentives and bonuses, garnered a variety of surprising feedback. Despite the varying opinions, the consensus was that NPS is a step in the right direction as well as a rallying cry for companies to align themselves with customers. Read more »
Guest Blogger | February 3, 2009
In case you haven't heard, we're in the middle of the worst recession the country has faced in decades. In fact, some feel we ain't seen nothing yet. Whatever stage we're in with this recession, it doesn't feel good. And there's no clear end in sight, which has companies of all sizes scared to death that customers may bale on them...good customers...that buy lots of stuff...and pay on time. The last thing anybody wants is to lose good customers, even Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | February 2, 2009
This down economy has taken its toll, and many companies are seeing their sales pipeline shrink. And one of the big challenges we've heard our readers say they face is keeping salespeople motivated when clients continue to say "no." . In today's lead 1to1 Weekly article, I spoke to some experts and practitioners about what they're doing to encourage positive attitudes and encourage sales staff to stay motivated, and more important, inspired. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | January 30, 2009
It comes as no surprise that executives from CRM technology firms are recommending customer centricity as an imperative for managing through current economic conditions. Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | January 29, 2009
Custom videos are a staple on YouTube and blogs, where users take famous scenes and insert themselves (or humorous people/objects/phrases) into them. The first effective mass-version of this I've seen comes from Disney, which has an unrivaled marketing machine. Plugging a customer's name, picture, or personal information into an email, direct mailing, or personal URL is one thing. What Disney has done with its latest campaign is more technically sophisticated (and expensive) than anything else I've seen in the mass-market. Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | January 28, 2009
When Fred Reichheld introduced Net Promoter Score (NPS) a few years ago, many detractors debated his simple methodology. How could a single question build customer loyalty, retain employees, and ultimately grow your business? Read more »
Guest Blogger | January 27, 2009
I can't imagine anyone, regardless of political creed, who wasn't moved by the inauguration of President Obama last week. It was hopefully, a transformational moment for America, though, of course, results will tell us whether that's true or not. If you listened to the Twitter chatter, read the blogs, tracked the mainstream news media, you heard throughout the day, on occasion, discussions around what approaches that President Obama was going to take to use his online political movement presence to Read more »
Don Peppers | January 26, 2009
Companies of all sizes seem to be cutting larger and larger swaths through their employee ranks every week, turning thousands of otherwise happy lives upside down. It is a terrifying thing to lose your job. I know. It happened to me less than twenty years ago, when I was let go from a highly paid advertising job in a general cutback. And I remember the feeling like it was yesterday. Abject fear. Terror. I had a modest severance, but our Read more »
Ginger Conlon | January 23, 2009
Countless products come and go, but often those with staying power stick around because they were created to solve a specific customer need, and then built with the customer in mind. At the recent National Retail Federation's Big Show in New York, I came across just such a product: EZface's Virtual Mirror. Will it catch on? Only time will tell. But it has two advantages: Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | January 22, 2009
Although more blog entries about Twitter have been written than the site's popularity warrants (visit Mashable.com for hundreds of posts over the past year), occasionally the service deserves some of the good press it receives. Recently Business Week ran an interview with Frank Eliason, the Comcast employee responsible for handling customer issues via Twitter. But the interesting part wasn't that he uses the service for CRM, but what came at the end of the story. Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | January 21, 2009
Work begins today for the newly elected 44th president of the United States. But it was his campaign's work with leveraging social media that helped land him in the Oval Office. By combining social media, analytics, and targeted messaging, Obama's campaign set an example of how business strategists need to think about how their companies should change the way they communicate and interact with customers. Innovative businesses can learn from the campaign and understand how to stay relevant. Read more »
Guest Blogger | January 20, 2009
As marketers, it really seems like a "no brainer" that we should focus on building relationships with new customers as they enter our business or service. Even beyond our profession, I expect that as a customer myself. The phrase that was always engrained in me as a child is, "You never get a second chance to make a first impression." Yet, when you think about marketing investment dollars, the allocations can sometimes go like this in those tedious budget meetings: Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | January 19, 2009
Last week I attended the Argyle CMO Leadership Forum, featuring more than 100 senior-level marketers covering all sorts of industries. Naturally the topic of social media came up frequently, as people were curious how their programs stacked up to their peers, and what insight and best practices has been achieved. One executive from MTV Networks, Christina Glorioso, shared her predictions for where social media is heading, and what MTV is doing to anticipate the future. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | January 16, 2009
One of the (many) things that drives me crazy as a customer is to see an ad for a product, especially something new, and then to go to the store only to be told that it's not yet in stock. I don't know whose idea it is to generate buzz before a product is available--implying that it is available (much different than building buzz for an upcoming release date)--but let me just say to those folks: It's really disappointing and Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | January 15, 2009
When the Obama transition team launched Change.gov, it began a whole new chapter in how the Federal government views the internet, social media, and the power of listening to citizens. A similar site could have been created years ago, but it took the outside-the-box thinking of the incoming president's team to fully grasp the power of this medium. Today the Obama team announced it was opening the Citizens' Briefing Book to the public as part of the Change.gov site. Any Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | January 14, 2009
It was Alvin Toffler, technological, digital, and corporate futurist, who said, "Change is the process by which the future invades our lives." After visiting the National Retail Federation's Retail's Big Show on Monday in New York City, I believe that change may be invading our future sooner than we think. Read more »
Guest Blogger | January 13, 2009
It finally, unexpectedly happened: I'm at my new HP Pavilion laptop, there is a flash of blue, the scrolling of words, and then the screen goes black--followed by the sickening silence of death. Having raised three children to adulthood I've calmly lived through emergency room stitches and teenage drama, so I wasn't quite prepared for the sheer terror that erupted in my body. I tried the owner's manual and all the usual dance steps I had learned over the years Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | January 12, 2009
I've heard many people talk about what big fans they are of airline JetBlue. Sure, its planes are comfy and the satellite TV is a nice perk, but there's something about the whole experience that gets customers to come back. To create a great end-to-end customer experience, JetBlue looks past the plane ride to understand what customers want and need. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | January 9, 2009
Consumer behavior is changing, especially in the way customers communicate and interact with brands, according to Mike Osborn, cofounder and managing director of Catalyst Direct. Consumers are much more empowered. Increasingly they interact with businesses when, where, and how they want. "This is the way the world is going," he said during a recent conversation with 1to1, "and it's challenging for businesses to keep up." Osborn discussed four areas that businesses should improve in to keep pace with customers' changing Read more »
Jeremy Nedelka | January 8, 2009
The annual list of top online holiday retailers is in, and there are almost no surprises at the top. ForeSee Results and FGI Research compiled the list of 40 retailers with the best customer satisfaction over the 2008 holiday season, using the Univ. of Michigan's American Customer Satisfaction Index's 100-point scale. The top-five are: Read more »
Mila D'Antonio | January 7, 2009
After 62 days and painstaking inspection of ballots, Minnesota finally announced Al Franken the winner of its Senate race on Monday. Read more »
Don Peppers | January 7, 2009
This week I made a presentation to a large telecom client of ours in Istanbul about the virtues and how-to's of customer analytics and segmentation. As a normal part of the transition strategy to becoming more customer-centric, we usually suggest that a client should identify one or two segments, and place them into a pilot program of customer management. By running this pilot project over a number of months, you can work out the kinks and conflicts involved in managing Read more »
Ginger Conlon | January 6, 2009
Organizations that want to lower their services costs (that would be all of them...) should work harder at avoiding those calls and emails in the first place--and not by removing the contact information from their website. According to Bill Price, author of The Best Service Is No Service, businesses must do more to improve their products, process, and services, thus customers will have fewer reasons for contacting the companies they buy from. During his presentation at the CRM Association's annual Read more »
Elizabeth Glagowski | January 5, 2009
Today's lead story in 1to1 Weekly takes a look at the role of the Chief Customer Officer. As companies look to shore up their customer strategies to weather the economic storm, it looks as if having an executive in the board room with a focus on customers would be a good idea. Some, however, don't agree. Read more »
Ginger Conlon | January 2, 2009
It's easy for executives to say that they want to use customer experience as a competitive differentiator, but putting action behind those words isn't always so easy. Customer experience management (CEM) comprises service, branding, employee engagement, and the like. In fact, I recently attended Strativity Group's two-day customer experience management (CEM) certification course, and came away with pages and pages of notes on those areas and more. I poured over those pages and compiled a list of the questions, observations, Read more »
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