Idea Gathering: Customer Experience News: Are You Listening?

The Total Customer Experience Leaders Summit provides both B2B and B2C case studies and translating these innovations and insights is a huge part of the value of the conference. Our unique idea gathering wrap-ups between sessions facilitate this translation and were one of our most highly rated features last year.

Here on the blog we’re doing a regular series of idea gathering wrap ups, pulling together some of our favorite stories on customer experience, customer experience design, and overall customer-centricity. Share with us in the comments to add your thoughts!

This week, we’re looking at listening. Do you know when to listen to customers? Fast Company presented the short video below with CEO of RedStamp Erin Newkirk focusing on the issue.
Many brands are now using Social Media for listening to customers and on that note 1to1media presented “3 Ways That Social Engagement Breeds Customer Loyalty.” One example they used is of creating an online community for listening to customer ideas:

“To keep the pressing competition at bay, TurboTax decided in 2004 to launch Inner Circle, an online community and idea exchange, as a way of listening to the company’s most loyal customers and to implement their ideas. Through careful monitoring and continuous engagement, the crowdsourcing community has grown to 20,000 members dedicated to finding ways to improve TurboTax’s products, and is now the feedback destination where customers come to share ideas and to ask questions.”

In an article in Training magazine, Nick Lane, Director, Strategy and Planning, Everything Everywhere wrote of listening to customer feedback on an agent to agent level to improve customer experiences and “Inspire Brilliance”.

Lastly, we came across this great interview with Dunkin Brands’ CMO John Costello in Forbes where he states on making Dunkin beloved:

“It goes back to basic understanding of the consumer, to listening very hard to their needs and wants.”

How are you listening? Like these updates? Follow us on Twitter or become a fan on Facebook for industry news all week long.

Audience Measurement Session Spotlight: The Three Screens: Understanding Consumption & Multi-Tasking Patterns

Today’s content is being viewed on more than just television sets. Today’s digital lifestyle allows consumers to capture and share information real time, live, on demand, in home, in store and on the go. To fully capture today’s media consumption habits marketers must consider the three screens ‘ television, computer and mobile device.

Yet, combining behavioral data from TV, internet and mobile sources is fraught with logistical challenges. Join us at The Audience Measurement Event when Jonathan Steuer, Vice President of Audience Research & Measurement at TIVO tackles measurement across the three screens. He will discuss the logistical challenges in conducting multi-screen behavioral research and will present some insights from early three screen research initiatives.

If you’d like more information on The Audience Measurement Event, download the brochure.  When you register to join us May 21-23, 2012, in Chicago and mention code AM12BLOG, you’ll receive 15% off the standard rate!

Source: TiVo

Featured Session: The Three Screens: Understanding Consumption & Multi-Tasking Patterns

Featured Speaker:  Jonathan Steuer, VP, Audience Research and Measurement, TIVO

About the Session: Combining behavioral data from TV, Internet and mobile sources is fraught with logistical challenges, but also offers perhaps the only way to truly understand consumers’ media usage across all three screens. Jonathan Steuer, VP of Audience Research & Measurement at TiVo, will discuss the logistical challenges in conducting multi-screen behavioral research and will present
some insights from early three-screen research initiatives.

One Mobile Year: Three months of good and bad

Kit Hughes, Managing Director and Head of Strategy for strategic branding studio Look-Listen, recently spoke at The Mobile Marketing Conference. He is living one year not using a personal computer and blogging about it at The following is his summary of the first three months of the project. Read the original post here.

It’s been a mixed bag.
As I talked/ranted/joked during my session at The Mobile Marketing conference yesterday, the past three months have been enlightening. If you were in the audience, you heard me say things like:

  • I’m a mess.
  • Skype sucks.
  • Why am I doing this? Because I’m a masochist.
  • Amazon is a disappointment.
  • A year ago I would have gone to battle for Google Docs but now I won’t give it the time of day.
  • Running a business on an iPad is painful.
  • I spend more money with Zappos because of their app.

For most of you that were not there, let me give some dimension to these comments.

I’m a mess
Well, I am. In the past three months, I’ve been trying to run a fully humming design studio and launch another business using only an iPad and iPhone. This involves more than just email; it involves managing payroll, refining an operating budget, collaborating with remote teams, invoicing, drafting agreements, etc. (See ‘The Net Net’ below for more details)

Skype sucks
Seriously, it does. I used to rely on Skype for hours and hours of seamless communication when I was on a laptop, sometimes spending 4 hours a day on it. I still spend a lot of time on it but it’s an unreliable and unintuitive step-child to the version I used on my laptop. Bad Skype.

Why am I doing this? Because I’m a masochist
This was a joke, which was not received well at 9am. Nick Sheth (from Gap) didn’t warm up the audience enough when he spoke. However, by the time Catherine Roe (from Google) spoke, the audience was putty! You’re welcome Catherine.

Amazon is a disappointment
I hold Amazon to a very high standard and admire the leadership of Jeff Bezos and team for blazing new ground in internet retailing and e-readers. However, Amazon has shown slow leadership in mobile web. I hear chatter about how Amazon is making the site more tablet friendly but it’s a fail: they need an innovative, dedicated tablet site.

A year ago I would have gone to battle for Google Docs’
It’s a shame that the mobile version of Google Docs is as buggy and feature poor as it is. Seriously, there is no reason it can’t be better. They have coded their own operating system after all. Maybe they neglect it because they want people to by an Android device and use Google Docs on that? I’d like to think they’re better than that.

Running a business on an iPad is painful
Apple’s fault? Nope. In fact, I draft agreements in Pages and create proposals in Keynote very easily and iCloud syncs them with both devices. The pain is from the B2B software providers. Even a company I once loved, Freshbooks, disappoints. I plan on pontificating pretty hard on this area in the coming month.

I spend more money with Zappos because of their app
It’s true. They have an elegant app that lets me dig into the purchase process. They’ve given me a very easy way to browse and buy products on my iPhone and iPad, so that’s just what I do.

The Net Net
It’s unfair for me to leave my first three months with sound bites and minimal commentary. I said I was a masochist, not reckless (any funnier?) Seriously though, I am going to spend time over the next several days outlining the experience of the past three months, writing posts around key topics in work and life. Then, I’ll start to review apps and accessories I come in contact with. This will help give more context to the insights and opportunities.

Now, for the big finish: I’ve spent no more than 10 hours on a desktop in the past three months. 10 hours would have been a normal day for me in front of a laptop before this mobile year.

Research Pays ‘ An International View

Today’s post comes from Tim Hoskins, VP of Client Relations at Quester. Quester is a sponsor at The Market Research Technology Event 2012. Quester?? has over 30 years of experience in uncovering the qualitative insights that are necessary to make businesses successful.  If you’d like to join them this April 30-May 2, 2012, in Las Vegas, NV, register today and mention code MRTECH12BLOG and save 15% off the standard rate!

Research Pays ‘ An International View

Source: Logo Resources

It is very likely that Nike will soon recover from their latest sneaker name. In short time you will have to actually search long and hard for the articles and blog posts on the internet. For the time being though, it has become the topic of conversation with others bringing up reminders of other companies who have had the same misfortune (read about the Black and Tan here). We will probably never know how the oversight occurred and personally, I think it may be best if we don’t.

What we can derive from this is that due diligence and research will always pay off in the long run. With the emergence of online qualitative software tools, interviews with your consumers can take place with a click of a button, even though you may be separated by an ocean.

In a study we conducted at Quester, we focused on conducting qualitative discussions with respondents in their natural language in the following countries; United States, Canada, Mexico, Germany and France. In total, 1226 respondents were interviewed around the topic of bottled water and the role that it plays in their lives. The average data collection time period was around one week per country.

For more details on how the interviews were administered, and the cultural nuances of each country, please feel free to download the paper here, or watch/listen to the presentation here.

TMMC Recap: Crowdsourcing The Hottest Topics in Mobile Marketing

Last week at The Mobile Marketing conference we were pleased to host an expert panel featuring Carrie Chitsey, CEO, 3Seventy, Joseph Cox, President, VMBC and Brent Drake, Vice President, Sales & Marketing, Best Fit Mobile & Marketing.

Our expects tackled a range of topics that we had gathered ahead here on the blog and on LinkedIn and other social media as well as questions from the audience. Watch a video below for the full session.

Some of the biggest takeaways were as follows:  
What’s the most important aspect to any mobile marketing strategy?
Ask “How does this fit in with the rest of my channels?”
Determine other touch points and find how mobile fits into that
Having the correct plan in place first
Have a central point of contact (for separate agency or departments) and utilize data across channels
Before a campaign is executed, figure out how you will use data afterwards

How do you get your company or CMO to see the value of a mobile strategy?
Look at the drop off that occurs for a non-mobile optimized site

Look at the response rate for a targeted, opted-in group (much higher than email), “The Golden Ticket is that opt-in”
How do you move behind the “bright shiny object” aspect of mobile and actually drive the bottom line?
Capture both quantitative and qualitative data about app/mobile use, the numbers and responses will speak for themselves

If I have a limited budget, what should take precedence: apps or mobile site?
A mobile website will see biggest immediate impact, mobile optimized is a good stop-gap, but a true mobile website will be the best investment

What is the biggest game changer in terms of new technology on the horizon?
The tablet
The availability of data for brands to connect with their customers
Augmented reality applications

Is Your Company Meeting Consumer Expectations?

Consumer expectations are changing more rapidly than ever before. Meeting the needs of today’s consumers while remaining true to your brand promise is a challenge your organization will soon have to face.

Join Scott Hudler, Vice President – Global Consumer Engagement, Dunkin’ Donuts at the Total Customer Experience Leaders Summit, taking place June 6-8, 2012 in Boston, Massachusetts as he delivers his keynote presentation: Meeting the Expectations of Your Consumers

In this presentation, Scott will share how Dunkin’ Donuts focuses on delivering a consistent and integrated message to the consumer across advertising, marketing, menu, in-store environment and guest service to keep the brand as one of the most beloved brands in America.

Join Scott at Total Customer Experience Leaders Summit, an event that not only redefines customer centricity, but explains what this means for you, your brand and your business. It will unite diverse industry leaders to share genuine insights and best practices for “Designing an Integrated Experience with Measurable Impact.”

In addition to Dunkin’ Donuts, hear from the following companies who will be sharing their own real-life stories in customer experience:
AAA NCNU, AARP, American Family Insurance, BMO Financial Group, Boston Symphony Orchestra, Burke, Inc., Citizens Financial Group, Experience Engineering, Feltz & Associates, LLC, Forrester, GfK Custom Research, GfK Customer Research, Hunter Douglas, Inc., Indiana University, Janet LeBlanc & Associates, JoAnna Brandi & Company, Inc., Maritz Research, Porter Airlines, Prophet, REI, Rockwell Automation, Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, The Hartford, Time Warner Cable and USAA.

Download the brochure to see the full program.

As a reader of our blog we’d like to offer you a 15% off the standard registration rates, use code TCEL12BLOG to save. Visit the webpage to register today

We look forward to seeing you this June in Boston!
The Total Customer Experience Leaders Event Team

Visit the event webpage. Follow us on Twitter. Become a fan on Facebook.

How Social Media ‘Architects’ Work with ‘Detectives’ to Build the Human Network

The Market Research Technology Event is teaming up with sponsor KL Communications  to bring you weekly perspectives on the latest in the market research technology world.   The Market Research Technology Event is taking place April 30-May 2, 2012, in Las Vegas, NV.  As a reader of this blog, when you register to join us and mention code MRTECH12BLOG, you’ll receive a 15% discount off the standard rate!

How Social Media ‘Architects’ Work with ‘Detectives’ to Build the Human Network

By John Huntsman, Contributing Writer

An interesting perspective described by Brian Solis in his new book, ‘The End of Business as Usual,’ is that all of us who participate in social media are actively working together to architect the next generation of information network; aptly coined by Cisco as the ‘human network.’ The dominance of traditional search engine algorithms is on the decline, quickly being eclipsed by a new way of finding information that relies more on tapping into networks of people, and less on search engine indexes. Instead of manually combing through websites, articles, and databases that search engines point you to, you can connect to informed people (via social media) who can then help guide your discovery process. If there is any indication that things are trending this way, look at Google’s push to make Google+ viable.

From a marketing perspective, there is a big opportunity for brands to act as ‘architects,’ in which they make the information discovery process more effective and efficient for their target market. The key here is to provide quality and relevant information that speeds up the learning process, as opposed to simply providing sales copy that leads people directly to your website. Social consumers are more savvy than traditional consumers, and can spot a salesy approach from a mile away, so a major focus in social media for businesses needs to be on education.

With that said, how do you become effective architects of the human network? It starts with a top-down commitment to social media at your organization. However, once the resources are put in place to support a social media initiative, developing a strategy from that point becomes a little less straight forward. What content is most relevant to information-seeking prospects? Where do prospects typically start when searching for information? Where do they end up? What is the typical ‘click path’ that they follow before they are even ready to interact with a brand? The list of questions goes on.

How do you derive data-driven answers to these questions? Through using social media analysis tools such as Collective Intellect, Radian 6 or Netbase, in conjunction with tools like Klout or Twitalyzer, you can begin to uncover insights that can help you reverse engineer the information discovery click path. This type of research is based on ‘grounded’ or ‘empirical’ approaches, which takes the opposite approach of traditional research. It involves finding clues and opportunities, and letting that data guide the development of insights, instead of starting with a hypothesis that guides the direction.

It’s sometimes apt to think of a social media analyst as a detective. Just think of a classic detective movie where they pin up the various pieces surrounding a case on a cork board, and use strings to show how the different pieces are connected. This is essentially how social media analysts can go about trying to figure out the click path of their target market.

If the social media detectives are able to provide this type of information to the rest of the marketing department, they will essentially be providing the key background for architects to design effective blue prints in the human network. As social media becomes more ingrained in our culture, this architecture is going to become even more critical for awareness and ultimately the conversion of new leads.

Total Customer Experience Takeaways

Wordle: Total Customer Experience LeadersAs we begin looking forward to the 2012 Total Customer Experience Leader’s summit, we’ll be presenting some of the key takeaways from our 2011 event. Pictured here is a Wordle of our executive summary notes. I’ve stripped out the two most obvious words”Customer” and “Experience” to drill down a bit more into the heart of our takeaways.

One thing that immediately strikes me: how action-oriented these words are. “Make, create, integrate,” and “change” all jump out. That’s what we hope for from this event: that our attendees will leave with actionable insights that they can immediately integrate into their existing strategies when they return to the office.

Another big theme: Culture, Ecosystem & Employees. Kerry Bodine‘s session at last years event focused on this particularly, with the theme summed up in the following sentence “The Customer Experience Ecosystem is a complex set of relationships among your company’s employees, partners, and customers that determines the quality of the experience.”

To create a strong Customer Experience Ecosystem, Kerry recommended following these steps:
1. Map it
2. Co-create it
3. Socialize it

Don’t just target segments, go out and talk to people and create personas based on behavioral attitudes.

Did you attend Total Customer Experience Leaders in 2011? What were your key takeaways?

Thanks for attending #TMMC, Plus “What’s Your Platform?”

First off, we’d like to thank everyone who attended The Mobile Marketing Conference last week and helped to make it such a great experience. As we start to sift through out video footage and notes, expect lots more coverage of the subject right here.

Our partners at 3Seventy have put together a great wrap-up post already, sharing their main takeaways. Check it out here.

One question that came up frequently over the course of our 3 days in Miami was “What platform?” – with attendees occasionally being asked what platform they personally were using. The best thing to do when faced with this question is to look at the data – what does your analytics platform have to say about your visitors and what browser they are using?

For fun, I grabbed the screenshot below showing what platform users of the #TMMC hashtag on twitter were coming from. Behind HootSuite and Tweetdeck, Twitter for iPhone was our mobile winner coming in at 8% of tweets and Echofon (iPhone or iPad only) also picked up 3%. Twitter for Android and Tweetcaster for Android were in use as well and Twitter for BlackBerry was used for less than 1% of tweets.

Visit TheMMConference’s Archive on #TMMC Containing 522 Tweets for more stats from the conference;

To continue the discussions well into 2013, we encourage everyone to join the LinkedIn Group. This is a global network of professionals from all industries who share a common goal to track and develop Mobile Marketing trends and developments. Plus, keep up with the latest news by subscribing to updates from us on Facebook or Twitter.

If you are interested in sharing your conference insights here or contributing a guest blog, please contact me, Michelle LeBlanc, at We’d love to have your input!

Idea Gathering: Customer Experience News

The Total Customer Experience Leaders Summit provides both B2B and B2C case studies and translating these innovations and insights is a huge part of the value of the conference. Our unique idea gathering wrap-ups between sessions facilitate this translation and were one of our most highly rated features last year.

Here on the blog we’re doing a regular series of idea gathering wrap ups, pulling together some of our favorite stories on customer experience, customer experience design, and overall customer-centricity. Share with us in the comments to add your thoughts!

Our absolute favorite story this week came by way of The Chadwick Martin Bailey blog. The author discusses 3 things a company did to leave her feeling even better after a bad situation:

- They responded

- They used manners (thanked me for my business, apologized for the problem, etc.)

- They offered a resolution

Our guest blogger Flavio Martins also had some great insight this week, offering up5 Traits of Great Customer Service. Additionally I came across this white paper by Oracle which showcased Seven Power Lessons for Customer Experience Leaders. Lastly, we kept counting up to customer experience as Entrepreneur offered up “How The 10 Most Trusted Corporate Brands Connect With Their Customers.” We’ll leave you with the following quote from that piece:

“Though they may not have the biggest sales or market share in their categories, today’s most trustworthy brands have created relationships with consumers through experiences that trigger a visceral response.”

Like these updates? Follow us on Twitter or become a fan on Facebook for industry news all week long.