What is a hard to reach group? Not what you think.

I saw a title of blog post recently titled “What is a hard to reach group?” The answer seemed obvious – young men, hispanic people, people with high incomes. There are lots of demographic groups that are hard to reach and cause researchers a lot of stress when it comes to filling every cell in a sampling matrix.

But that wasn’t the first thing that came to mind for me. The first thing I thought of was that hard to reach people are those for whom we haven’t found the right value proposition. We haven’t found the incentives that are meaningful to them. That’s the simplest answer.

But, it also means we haven’t found the type of research that feels important to them – our surveys aren’t meaningful to them, our focus groups don’t put them at ease, our individual interviews feel unnatural to them.

Maybe these ‘hard to reach’ groups aren’t hard to reach at all. Maybe we’ve spend all of our time trying to attract and interest mini-mes. People just like me. People who completed highschool. People who went to college. People who work from 9 to 5 and then go home, make dinner, take care of the kids and get to bed by 11.

Maybe, if we stopped trying to recruit mini-mes, if we stepped into the shoes of someone who works the nightshift, someone who plays video games until 3am, someone who only wears designer shoes, maybe we’d find that these hard to reach groups aren’t so hard to reach at all.

Annie Pettit, PhD is the Chief Research Officer at Peanut Labs, a company specializing in self-serve panel sample. Annie is a methodologist focused on data quality, listening research, and survey methods. She won Best Methodological Paper at Esomar 2013, and the 2011 AMA David K. Hardin Award. Annie tweets at @LoveStats and can be reached at annie@peanutlabs.com.

Using Emotional Energy to Make Your Customer Experience Programs Easier, Faster and Smarter

Photo by paul bica

Identifying and designing for your customers’ and employees’ emotional needs will simplify and improve the efficiency and effectiveness of your customer experience programs.

During the Total Customer Experience Leaders Summit in April, Daryl Travis, CEO of Brandtrust, described how to discover and leverage emotional energy to drive better business results.

  • Step 1: Understand how your brand makes your customers feel. Brands are about feelings, not facts. Emotion drives behavior. 95% of decisions are driven by non conscious processing. Forget the “Voice of the Customer,” think “Mind of the Customer.”
  • Step 2: Focus on the moments that matter most, which are the ones that are most emotional. It’s your competitive advantage. Establish an emotional brand purpose. A brand must stand for something important and must be authentic.
  • Step 3: Create and pulse employee energy for delivering peak customer experiences. Ongoing measurement optimizes the energy and the experience for employees and customers rating energy level.

The Cleveland Clinic is an organization that builds trust and credibility through their brand purpose. Here are two videos from the Cleveland Clinic empathy series featuring life-
changing stories with emotional energy that are unforgettable.

Empathy: The Human Connection to Patient Care by Cleveland Clinic

If the video doesn’t appear, you can view it at http://youtu.be/cDDWvj_q-o8

Patients: Afraid and Vulnerable

If the video doesn’t appear, you can view it at http://youtu.be/1e1JxPCDme4

Some moments in the customer’s experience simply matter more than others. The critical part is figuring out what people can’t or won’t tell you so you can make a difference their lives.

Peggy L. Bieniek, ABC is an Accredited Business Communicator specializing in corporate communication best practices. Connect with Peggy on LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, and on her website at www.starrybluebrilliance.com.

Report: Mobile Technology is Transforming the Face of Creativity and Design

The New Creatives Report, a U.S. survey of more than 1,000 creative professionals and 500 students in creative disciplines, found that 77 per cent of creatives believe change within the industry is happening rapidly, with two-thirds expecting their role will be significantly different within three years.
Additionally, 87 percent of those who create mobile content believe doing so has had a positive impact on their work. ‘Creatives are going mobile, and this means a sea change for the creative process,’ said David Wadhwani, senior vice president and general manager, Digital Media Business Unit at Adobe.
While a third (36 percent) say they rely on pen and paper for brainstorming, 42 per cent say they use mobile to create content anywhere. Not to mention, 80 percent respondents believe they must learn new tools and techniques and three quarters say that creatives must now work across multiple mediums and disciplines.

According to Wadhwani, “Three in four creatives say that mobile is transforming the face of creativity and design. Nearly triple the number of creatives say they want to use a tablet for idea generation than those who are doing it today. It’s exciting to see that it isn’t only the opportunity to create content for mobile, but also the act of being mobile that these professionals are embracing.’

Check out the full report below:

Study: Millennials to Shake Up Corporate America

Did you know that by the year 2020, Millennials, the generation
born between 1982 and 2003 and who helped twice elect President Obama,
will comprise more than one of three adult Americans. In fact, it is estimated
that by 2025 they will make up as much as 75 percent of the workforce.  So,
understanding this generation’s values creates a window into the future of
corporate America.
New survey data suggest that
are as liberal in their corporate outlook as they are in their
political view. They want to work for companies with public service missions,
they want their employers to contribute to social and ethical causes, and they’d
rather make less money but do something that they love.
This data paints a contrast to older generations, according
to the authors of a new study, who argue that Millennials have such liberal views
about social responsibility, personal wealth and financial institutions that
they stand to reorder the priorities of corporate America. This study was
written by two men who have long studied this generation: Morley Winograd,
a senior fellow at the University of Southern California’s Annenberg
School Center on Communication and Leadership Policy, and Michael Hais, a
former vice president for entertainment research at Frank N. Magid
‘As Millennials become an increasingly large share of the
adult population and gather more and more wealth, the generation’s size and
unity of belief will cause seismic shifts in the nation’s financial sector,
shaking it to its very foundations and leading to major changes in the nation’s
board rooms,’ the authors wrote.

According to the study, a 2013 survey of high-achieving high
school students found young people most wanted to work at companies with public
service missions. Among those are health care companies such as St. Jude’s
Children’s Hospital, government agencies such as the FBI and the CIA, and
private employers ‘whose mission is to change the world for the better.’
Additionally, a 2012 survey of insurance company employees found 63% of
Millennials want their employer to contribute to social or ethical causes, vs.
about half of Baby Boomers and older Generation Xers.
Further, an Intelligence Group survey found 64
percent of Millennials would rather make $40,000 per year at a job they love
than $100,000 a year at a jot they think is boring. The average investor ages
21 to 36 has about half his or her savings in cash, compared to 23 percent for
other age groups, according to an analysis by UBS Wealth Management in
the Americas. It described Millennials as ‘the most conservative generation since
the Great Depression.’
He said, ‘There is a great deal of survey research that
suggests the conventional wisdom ‘ that young people are liberal when they are
young but grow more conservative as they age, is simply wrong. People form
lifelong beliefs about how the world works between the ages of 17-25, and once
formed, they rarely change.’

The Open Systems Model: A Blueprint to Transform Your Organization’s Customer Experience Program

Photo by paul bica

“The difficulty lies not so much in developing new ideas as in escaping the old ones.’  – John Maynard Keynes, Economist and Author

Here are highlights from a case study on HP Financial Services’ 12-year customer experience program transformation:

HP Financial Services’ core purpose is to differentiate the HP experience by serving as a bridge between technology and finance solutions enabling customer’s achievement of their business goals. The key to their success is their engaged 1,500-employee workforce supporting customers in over 50 countries.

During the Total Customer Experience Leaders Summit in April, John Sullivan, Global TCE Leader, HP Financial Services, described his organization’s 12-year journey to transform their customer experience program to drive benefits from a customer point and to minimize customer effort:

  • Phase 1: Organization Design Around the Customer
    • Focus on customer relationships
    • HP Culture, HPFS Operating Philosophy, Open Systems Model
  • Phase 2: Understanding Our Customers
    • Systemic understanding of customer experiences. Focus on improving delivery experiences and perceptions.
    • Segment our customers
    • TCE Research Programs, Closed-Loop Process
  • Phase 3: Focus on Colleague Engagement
    • Focus on enhancing colleague behaviors and skills
    • TCE Education, Communication, Rewards & Recognition Programs
  • Phase 4: Process Experience Management
    • Focus on improving process experience through process engineering. Strong process, operations and technology collaboration.
    • Six Sigma, Process Roadmaps, Process Improvement Plans
  • Phase 5: Customer-Driven Experience Management
    • Look through the lens of the customer experience focusing on ease, not delight
    • Focus on developing/implementing strategies to deliver a low effort experience
    • The Pledge, Service Acumen, Escalation Protocols

As a result, overall loyalty scores improved seven points in the last four years. In addition, they achieved a 17 point improvement in the “Secure and Favorable” segment, which contain accounts that enable Share of Wallet growth.

According to John, their blueprint is an Open Systems Model, a measurement process that gives continuous feedback. Based on the premise, “Organizations are perfectly designed to get the results they get,” the Open Systems Model is a powerful leadership tool that:

  • Teaches systemic thinking
  • Enables more effective analysis and action
  • Provides common frameworks and language to facilitate and enhance communication
  • Aids and enhances alignment, which is crucial to organizational effectiveness.

Learn more about the Open Systems Model and how to turn this information into meaningful, measurable action to drive customer loyalty.

Peggy L. Bieniek, ABC is an Accredited Business Communicator specializing in corporate communication best practices. Connect with Peggy on LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, and on her website at www.starrybluebrilliance.com.

Why Your Brand Needs Social Customer Service

Everyday users go online to complain about brands ‘ on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest ‘ you name it. Responding to these complaints in real-time reduces the impact of them on your bottom line.
These days, customers aren’t calling your 800 number. Instead, they are getting on Facebook and complaining about you or sending a Tweet about your lousy service. Social customer service is a very different ball game with unique practices, plans and a different timeline. You’d better be listening for online complaints and be ready to respond in real-time or face potentially negative profits.
Social customer service emerged because organic online conversations require an immediate response. When a customer complains about you on Facebook or Twitter, you’d better be listening and respond within a short window or poor attitudes about your brand escalate. Social customer service connects your customers with people, both inside and outside of your organization, and with the information they need to solve problems and make better decisions. Not to mention, your customers expect it.
Check out this infographic, which highlights the key reasons your business needs social customer service:

Inside Insights: Brian Byrne

In the first episode of the Inside Insights Podcast series
brought to you by The North American Consumer Insights
, I sat down with North American Consumer Insights Event
speaker Brian Byrne, President of Aviador and Associates, to discuss competitive
War Gaming and the current Apple-Samsung War.
The North American Consumer Insights Event is a conference
that showcases the local Canadian culture in its storytelling. With new
entrants like Target Canada, rapid changes in technology and increasingly
discerning customers, the Canadian retail industry is in a constant state of
change, challenging players to adapt strategies and tactics to remain relevant.
 This conference was created for our
insights community that focuses on the power of insights in motivating smarter
decision making and shines a particular lens on the local flavor of shopper
insights in Canada.

Listen to the full interview here: http://bit.ly/1hEIqgS

If you’d like to hear more from Brian, don’t miss his double
session, ‘Classic Patterns of Competitive War Gaming’ at The North American
Consumer Insights Event on Monday, Sept 29th from 1:30-3:00 pm. The
event is taking place this September 29-October 1, 2014 in Toronto, Canada.

For more information about the event and to
register, click here: http://bit.ly/1kMxqhi

Apple Maps Still Can’t Find Their Way

As of late, Apple has delivered significant updates across virtually every facet of the company. In fact, the tech giant has released 4,000 new APIs to developers; a more aggressive push in cloud services; and changes across its mobile and desktop operating systems.
But, one area of Apple’s business that is seriously lacking in function and updates is Apple Maps. Maps are important to Apple because, just as search has been at the heart of how people find their way around the Internet, maps are the key to how many people use their smartphones.
According to Apple, there is a feature in iOS 8 that will give venue owners the ability to add more indoor positioning data. But from what we understand this was far from what Apple had intended. A source told Apple Insider, ‘There were multiple improvements that didn’t make it into iOS8,’ a source tells us.
After two years of parting ways with Google, Apple is still working on its Maps app. Some key changes included enhanced, more reliable data; more points of interest and better labels to make certain locations like airports, highways and parks easier to find; a cleaner maps interface; and public transit directions.
Further ahead, the report noted plans to integrate augmented reality features to give people images of what was nearby. So, why didn’t they appear?
One source said, ‘Many developers left the company, no map improvements planned for iOS 8 release were finished in time. Mostly it was failure of project managers and engineering project managers, tasks were very badly planned, developers had to switch multiple times from project to project. I would say that planning, project management and internal politics issues were a much more significant contributor to the failure to complete projects than developers leaving the group.’
Over the years, Maps have been a sensitive area in Apple’s business. It was at the 2012 WWDC that Apple unveiled a new version of its Maps app, but it turned out to be a disastrous move for the company. Unreliable data produced random renderings and bewildered users, and even prompted an apology from CEO Tim Cook with the promise that things would get better.
Apple appears to be taking similar steps to bring search closer to its core business, so there will be two areas to watch to see how the company evolves. 

Improving Patient-Physician Communication through a Novel Digital Portal: Challenging the Status Quo: Free Webinar

Many in the pharmaceutical and medical technology space today aim to make patient communication both more efficient and transparent.  PokitDok, which serves as a sort of healthcare marketplace, is a service that makes pricing more transparent and open.  MedXCom is improving doctor-patient communication by transcribing cell phone conversations for the patient’s reference.  One of the latest examples of these companies is My GI Health
The effort began in 2011 when a team from UCLA and the University of Michigan, supported by Ironwood Pharmaceutical, set out to improve communication between physicians and patients suffering from gastrointestinal (GI) disease.  Working with a multidisciplinary team of health education experts, computer scientists, psychologists, patient representatives, NIH researchers, and physicians, they created My GI Health ‘ a first-of-breed app that re-imagines how doctors and patients can engage in dialogue.
The team worked from the premise that computers aren’t supposed to make things more complicated. Instead, they are supposed to simplify the process of sharing information.  They saw a need to start using them to strengthen doctor-patient connections.  With this insight as a springboard, the team developed a new and innovative system that re-defined the way patients and doctors connect with one another.  Join us for a free webinar on June 11thas we explore the journey of this industry-academia alliance and how they pioneered My GI Health.  We take a look at the impact this innovative program may have on physicians, payers and the delivery of patient care.
In less than an hour, you’ll learn
‘ How a unique alliance between industry, academia, EHR vendors, and professional societies created a novel, evidence-based digital resource to improve population health
‘ Study My GI Health as an example app that bridges patients and providers using novel, credible functions
‘ How an external, patient-facing healthcare app can tie into an EHR to improve outcomes and efficiency in the clinical environment
‘ Advantages of creating a platform-agnostic, flexible, and adaptable digital resource suitable for broad distribution  
Presented by
Brennan Spiegel, Professor of Medicine and Public Health, UCLA; Cedars-Sinai Medical Center
Tom McCourt, CCO, Ironwood Pharmaceuticals
Date: Wednesday, June 11th, 2014
Time: 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM EDT
System Requirements: Windows?? 8, 7, Vista, XP or 2003 Server
Mac??-based attendees: Required: Mac OS?? X 10.6 or newer
Mobile attendees: iPhone??, iPad??, Android’ phone or Android table
Now, you can save 15% on ePharma West when you register and attend this webinar*.  Register now and use code XP1956DIGI.
Save the date
ePharma West 2014 | September 22-24 2014 | San Francisco, CA
Register with discount code XP1956BLOG and SAVE $100 off the current rate
*Each individual must be registered separately and attend to be eligible for discount
Check us out on Twitter: @ePharma
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Canada Cuts Ribbon on its Giant Open-Air Mall

Last week, Canada opened The Outlet Collection at Niagara,
which quickly filled with thousands of shoppers looking for the bargains and brands
they could previously only get in the United States.
‘We are sending a clear message to the outlet shopping industry that we mean business,’ Daniel
E. Fournier, chairman and CEO of Ivanho?? Cambridge, told Buffalo
The outlet mall’s 520,000 square feet of space is filled
with 94 retailers, and eight more are on the way. The $162 million mall is made
up of rows of stores, each with its own entrance connected by a series of
partly covered walkways. A separate food court sits enclosed in a stone-covered
building at one end near a grassy area where shoppers can gather on Adirondack
chairs, sit by a fireplace and listen to live music.
The Outlet Collection is a new concept for Ivanho??
Cambridge, which plans to replicate it at other malls around the world. Reactions
to the open-air style of the mall were mixed as some loved it and some worries
what would happen when winter hits.  
One shopper Shelly Berenbaum said that the new mall was nice
but that she would continue making her weekend-long shopping trips to the
States every month, where many shopkeepers and her preferred hotelier know her
by name.  She told Buffalo News, ‘We have
our routine. We do our shopping. We go out to dinner. We go to the movies.’
And though the grand-opening promotions made it difficult to
compare prices, she thought there were still better bargains to be had in the
States. ‘When you guys have sales, you have sales,’ she said. She cited a pair
of UGG boots marked down from $198 to $159 at the Canadian Outlet. A great
price for Canada, but she got the same pair on clearance at the U.S. Saks
outlet for $50 in February.
Christine Lalonde said she would still make her monthly trip
to the U.S. to stock up on clothes at Walmart. Though there are Walmarts in
Ontario, none has the larger sizes and styles she prefers. Marilyn Lock talked
about differences in inventory and selection, as well, even under identical
store banners. ‘Target over there, I love it. Target over here, forget it. It
doesn’t have the same variety or the pricing,’ she explained.
A lot of shoppers also said the new mall provided everything
they needed to stay local. For instance, Girlyn Cayabyab, who has been
venturing to Walden Galleria to shop every two weeks for years, said she would
probably be spending more time at the Outlet Collection from now on. ‘By the
time you go over the border and everything, I’d rather just pay a little extra
and not have to deal with it.’
The economy in Ontario’s Niagara region has struggled at the
second-highest in Canada, so Canadians hope its sleek new outlet mall will
be enough to keep some more of those dollars at home. Ann Ackerman, VP of outlet marketing at Macerich, said, ‘While
the newness of the competition will be intriguing to some shoppers, Fashion
Outlets of Niagara Falls is the largest outlet mall in the region today, and
will soon bring even more brands,’
Want more on this topic? Attend The North American Consumer
Insights Event this September 29-October 1, 2014 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
The event showcases the local Canadian culture in its storytelling. The same
relentless commitment to quality and value means more choice, diversity and a
change of scenery. With new entrants like Target Canada, rapid changes in
technology and increasingly discerning customers, the Canadian retail industry
is in a constant state of change, challenging players to adapt strategies and
tactics to remain relevant.

To learn more about
The North American Consumer Insights Event, click here: http://bit.ly/1i0hEKK