Your Customer Service Sucks, But I’m Still A Customer

Last week, my commute home was interrupted. I was frustrated when my train was behind schedule, and then taken out of service.

Not in Service Yellow Line trainMy reaction was similar to the reaction of those around me. “We are all late because your trains are running behind schedule, and your response is to kick us off the train and tell us to wait for the next one? Seriously, TriMet?”

The next day, it happened again. This time we were told there were too many trains. However, our train was nearly shoulder to shoulder. Saying there were too many trains, to those of us on the train, didn’t ring true. And it underlined that TriMet didn’t care about us, a train full of riders.

Over two days, we had an awful customer experience. The first time, we felt disregarded. The second time, we felt lied to.

But today, I am drafting this post on the train, living proof not every aspect of the customer experience matters. Read more of this post

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Content Will Not Be King

Coronation crown of Louis XVNearly every marketer in every industry has heard the cry “Content is King“. Even the cover of Ad Age was emblazoned with Content is King last month, complete with a crown. Once a call for change and recognition of a new marketplace reality, Content is King has become conventional marketing wisdom.

The problem is, conventional wisdom is average. Following conventional marketing wisdom will not differentiate you.

Why is content king today:

  • Being customer-centric required moving away from creative executions as the primary way to deliver a message. Focusing on the customer requires providing something that meets their need, and content perfectly fits the bill.
  • Content marketing was not the norm. Companies embracing content marketing were able to provide unique value to clients and prospects.

Today, the situation has changed. Read more of this post

Your Lead Scoring Blind Spot: The Internet

Marketers have a huge blind spot when it comes to nurturing and lead scoring. It does not matter if you have built a sophisticated lead management and nurturing system, driven by content consumption, engagement and response. Your blind spot is there.

The problem is, you only see how people respond to your content and your offers. You only see what is happening on your own properties. Your blind spot is all the time potential prospects spend on competitor sites, on editorial properties, on topical blogs or discussing with peers.

Read more of this post

Modern Media Buying and Enterprise B2B Demand Generation

The current trend in digital media is to move online advertising to trading desks, ad exchanges or real time bidding platforms. These platforms provide access to enormous pools of advertising inventory and allow media buyers to cherry pick their exact target audience, based on a wide range of audience data available for targeting.

However, for enterprise B2B marketers, these approaches are not mature enough to broadly support demand generation marketing. The challenges these platforms continue to face are access to sufficient high quality inventory and access to data appropriate for targeting company sizes and roles.

Published market research differs on the relative importance on audience and context, however the research I have seen does not align with the typical B2B marketing audience experience.

The problem: consuming traditional B2B content used for demand generation requires a significant time commitment. Taking the time to dive into a whitepaper or watch a webcast imposes a major time requirement. Read more of this post

Buyers to Marketers: Don’t Call Me, I’ll Call You

“Why do you want my email and phone number again? So your sales consultant can contact me? No thanks, I’ll pass.”

Boonville Missing Bucky Walter PhoneMost B2B marketers are still fixated on capturing registration data, and no wonder. The marketing automation machine lives on a diet of email and your sales process is built on the telephone.

The problem is, your buyer’s process is not built on your email or your phone. According to research, buyers only engage with companies directly during the last 40% of their research process.

When you insist on registration, you are in effect telling prospects:

  • We don’t want to be involved in the first half of your research.
  • We are only willing to engage with you on our terms and timetable.

Read more of this post

Mobile Marketing in B2B: #B2Bchat at 8 PM EST on 9/22

We will be picking up the Mobile Marketing conversation this evening with a look at experiences in 2011, priorities for 2012 and how mobile is changing sales enablement.

Here are the questions to start off this evening’s discussion: Read more of this post

Content Marketing and Choose Your Own Adventure Books

Choose Your Own Adventure books were a staple when I was growing up. I could read them for hours, choosing different paths and seeing each outcome unfold.

Original Choose Your Own Adventure

As a child, these books gave me a sense of control, they engaged me with choices and opportunities throughout the book.

Today, B2B marketers use content to meet the information needs of their audiences. However, the experience is often built on the assumption the marketer knows best, with a carefully planned stream of content dictated for each person. Read more of this post

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