Building Marketing Technologies

Reid Overcash

Reid OvercashReid is a brand marketing veteran that helped found and build two previous technology companies and now has co-founded ShareDirect along with CTO, John Brown.  As CEO he oversees operations and sales as well as customer support.

"Our primary reason for being is to support our customers with the best, most current technology to engage your customers and prospects and make you successful in the process."
This is my Personalized  Engagement Site (eSite) that will allow you to find the latest information and content relevant to your personal needs and interests. I invite you to visit it regularly so we can help you grow your business.

Building TRUST through HUMAN Interaction

Three featured articles highlighting the connection between personalization and building human relationships

I have three articles from the last couple of weeks all from CMS Wire that have a distinct connection to Personalization and Human interaction as current marketing imperatives. You can click on any of the three but here is a quick summary of each.

There are at least two core points that run through all three of these reports:
  • The HUMAN element is not to be denied or you are losing ground fast.
  • The other is TRUST gained by compassion (which is HUMAN), transparency, communication and HUMAN interaction.
I invite to look over these three short articles to see if you can apply any of their advice.

Again, ShareDirect is the only scalable technology that can truly help address these and other current need unmet needs. Let us hear from you.

Personalization Goes Nowhere Without Trust by Sharon Florentine

  • Personalization Delivers Great Trust
  • Be Transparent and Open
  • Data for Value to Customers
View Article

4 Ways to Ensure Brand Trust During Turbulent Times by Janelle Estes

  • Consistency Is Key
  • Show Compassion
  • Keep Lines of Communication Open
  • Optimize Your Digital Channels
View Article

When Customer Experience Needs a Human vs. a Machine by Allen J. Porter

  • Automation vs. Human Interaction-Not a Binary Relationship
View Article

Building TRUST through HUMAN Interaction

Three featured articles highlighting the connection between personalization and building human relationships

I have three articles from the last couple of weeks all from CMS Wire that have a distinct connection to Personalization and Human interaction as current marketing imperatives. You can click on any of the three but here is a quick summary of each.

There are at least two core points that run through all three of these reports:
  • The HUMAN element is not to be denied or you are losing ground fast.
  • The other is TRUST gained by compassion (which is HUMAN), transparency, communication and HUMAN interaction.
I invite to look over these three short articles to see if you can apply any of their advice.

Again, ShareDirect is the only scalable technology that can truly help address these and other current need unmet needs. Let us hear from you.

Personalization Goes Nowhere Without Trust by Sharon Florentine

  • Personalization Delivers Great Trust
  • Be Transparent and Open
  • Data for Value to Customers
View Article

4 Ways to Ensure Brand Trust During Turbulent Times by Janelle Estes

  • Consistency Is Key
  • Show Compassion
  • Keep Lines of Communication Open
  • Optimize Your Digital Channels
View Article

When Customer Experience Needs a Human vs. a Machine by Allen J. Porter

  • Automation vs. Human Interaction-Not a Binary Relationship
View Article

Your Solution to the HUMAN Connection

The Human Connection with ShareDirect

I’ve been preaching the need for companies to move beyond just thinking about Personalization (which is very important) to the next step of Humanizing their communications with their customers and prospects. This latest article from CMS Wire provides some context to this evolving story.

Some key points:
  • 75% of customers prefer to interact with a real person.
  • Customers engage with Humans not companies.
  • To make your company sound more Human you must first be a Human.
  • Always try to add a face.

All of this builds the image of company representatives being their trusted advisors. Some of this article is built around the use of social media, primarily LinkedIn, to make that Human connection. But you don’t have to go there as ShareDirect is designed and programmed to be Your Solution to the HUMAN Connection. Give your customers what they need and desire; someone who can engage, help and understand them.

View Article

A Video Message from Reid

Your Customers are Humans!

Reid Overcash, CEO, Heron Martech

As a result of the pandemic and social realities, we have found ourselves better understanding customers are REAL HUMANS rather than just customers. Thus, the Customer Experience (CX) mandate is quickly being replaced with the Human Experience (HX) imperative.

I look forward to answering any questions or hearing your thoughts and comments.
View my related article below on the necessity to focus on the Human Experience (HX)

Building Your Business With More Human Experience

Excellent report with data highlighting the coming trend toward HX over CX

The coming trend toward HX over CX

We have been hearing over the last couple of years about the importance of Customer Experience (CX) over just Customer Service (CS). Now we're taking the next step, Human Experience (HX).

Customer Experience (CX) Human Experience (HX)
  • Identifies you
  • Gives reasons to believe and buy
  • More satisfying transaction
  • Understands you
  • Engagement to improve people's lives
  • More fulfilling life
Now, this study from Globalwebindex and Worldwide Partners takes it another step. This report "From CX to HX: Unleashing the energy of Human-First Experiences (HX) to empower marketing of the future."


Download the Report

The report drills into several verticals: Healthcare, Consumer Packaged Goods and Retail, Travel and Tourism, and Business-to-Business.

Let me know your thoughts on this shift and we can discuss how ShareDirect is built around empowering marketing through Human Experience (HX).

Today and in the foreseeable future HX determines the ultimate brand value.

Decision-Makers Gravitate Toward Brands With Human Connections, Page 30


Human experience can elevate brands from transaction experience to brand culture experience, resulting in stronger trust and better customer relationships.
Helen Lo, Head of Strategic Planning, We Marketing Group, Worldwide Partners, China

Through it all, marketing and sales teams must incorporate a level of selflessness and empathy in their messages and approaches to connect in a human, authentic, and personalized way. As customers navigate life through this crisis, positioning your company as a true partner is critical. Dialing back product promotions and leading with a common understanding of our shared experiences during this time can be invaluable.
Alison Fetterman, Director of Strategy, Godfrey Worldwide Partners, U.S.



Source: Worldwide Partners

Deliver Exceptional, Personalized Experiences

3 Customer-Centric Steps to Building a Strong Offense

Video Introduction

Reid Overcash, CEO, Heron Martech



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Deliver Exceptional, Personalized Experiences

You can view the full article at CMSWire by Paul Hagen and Mike Rowland, The Great Restart: 3 Customer-Centric Steps to Building a Strong Offense. They cover the following points:
  1. Build Your Restart Plan Around Profitable Customers
    • Refine segmentation to identify your highest-value customers
    • Revisit your cost-to-serve model to understand which customers to engage
  2. Optimize Your Teams and their Technologies
    • Assess technology value to stop leakage
    • Reorganize your teams based on customer needs
  3. Take Advantage of New Opportunities
    • Create more customer value by meeting new needs

Their findings are built around a laser focus on your customers and new value proposition that will create an "increasing share of wallet, gaining higher margins and building market share."

I invite you to check out my video above and access the article. Please let us know how we can help you with our ShareDirect technology and our help for your business.



2020 Trends in Personalization

Why the Time Is Right for Personalization

Video Introduction

Reid Overcash, CEO, Heron Martech

Why the Time Is Right for Personalization

Attached is my latest video from a study that was just published from CMSWire, 2020 Trends in Personalization, which is based on very current data from B2B and B2C marketers. This is an easy and quick read but well worth the effort. You can click here to see the article.

Other than the key statistics you'll see in my short (just over 2 minutes) video you’ll discover several other key results that answer many questions we hear regularly about digital personalization.

Personalization Trends - View Article

The results now, though, are still impressive. Among the benefits marketers reported this year were:
  • A lift in business results (97%). This is much higher than in previous studies. Last year, 90% reported improvements, and 87% did in 2018. Plus, this year, nearly one in four marketers (24%) said they achieved a lift that’s higher than 20%.
  • Improved customer experiences (64%).
  • Increased conversion rates (63%).
  • Increased visitor engagement (55%).
Check out my video and take a look at the article and contact me directly if I can help you with this important process.

Tips for Success in Today's Environment

Video Introduction

Reid Overcash, CEO, Heron Martech


Summary

Use scalability without impacting quality to provide new solutions that make good first impressions for both old and new customers to prepare for tomorrow.



The subject matter of this video is from an Envestnet/Yodlee report dealing with the financial sector. I adapted the first 5 points for almost any type of company or organization then offered a good summation that you might use for your own business.

I’ll let you decide what you think and would welcome your thoughts and comments. We would love to show you how our ShareDirect technology can help you transform your communications in a very affordable way.

1.Have the scalability to keep up with the surge.

Adaptability is key in order to survive, and thrive, in quick-changing times. The ability to scale in an economically responsible way, without impacting the quality of service and security consumers deserve, matters now more than ever. Be ready to capitalize on today’s opportunities, and those on the horizon.

2. Get the word out.

Consumers are looking for new solutions. Make yours simple to find. Apps with a marketing budget are reportingly enjoying a 70% market share boost. Let consumers know what you have to offer, and how it can meet their financial needs.

3. Make a good first impression.

Don’t let potential customers be part of the 40% that abandon onboarding5. Welcome new users with a frictionless, but secure, registration process. The longer onboarding takes, the less likely a customer is to complete it. In a market that values instant gratification, onboarding should take minutes, if not seconds.

4. Optimize service for both old and new customers.

Take this opportunity to showcase capabilities to new customers, as well as established ones as they increase use. Ensure transaction processes are as quick, painless and seamless as possible. Customers increasingly expect a personalized experience, thrive to provide that to them.

5. Use analytics to prepare for tomorrow, t o d a y.

It’s tempting to put full focus on today’s growth, but significant resources should also be invested in preparing for tomorrow. In turbulent times, lean on data-rich.



How to Change Anyone’s Mind

Instead of pushing, try removing the barriers

Use Chemistry not Physics to change people's minds

I'd like to share a fantastic article with you called "How to Change Anyone’s Mind" by Jonah Berger. Berger is a Wharton School marketing professor who has a book coming out in a couple of weeks with this title.

Berger says that when trying to change minds in sales, marketing and all facets of our existence we default to some form of pushing which is a physical approach or physics. He says the more successful avenue would be to add a catalyst which looks to chemistry.


There are 5 barriers to change that can be overcome:
  1. Reduce Reactance: Since people have an “innate anti-persuasion radar.” You can highlight what they would recommend to others versus what they are doing.
  2. Ease Endowment: People are over-attached to the status quo so show them the costs of inaction.
  3. Shrink Distance: People have a “zone of acceptance”. Look to “gradual shifts of acceptance as stepping stones.”
  4. Alliviate Uncertainty: Change involves risk so lower the barrier to trial so they can experience it.
  5. Find Corroborating Evidence: For transition problems or change look to offer other users as references.
This is all very relevant to marketing but particularly our ShareDirect technology, which is plowing some new ground and not just a better mousetrap. ShareDirect helps you build chemistry through Bi-Directional Personalization which results in trust and further business opportunity. If you show you know your customer and want to help them you break down those barriers to change.

TRUST is the Ultimate Goal

Harvard Business Review Article: Begin with Trust



This new article from the May-June issue of Harvard Business Review by Francis Frei and Anne Morriss titled "Begin With Trust" deals with managing employees but also has implications for customer engagement when placed in context with other research.

They break it down to the TRUST TRIANGLE:

Trust Triangle

This new research interconnects with all of the previous research we've shared here from Gartner which tells us that customers want you to know them and help them in a variety of ways (Tailored engagement). Then we have the article from Keith Weed in Marketing Week we shared a few days back. The second point he provided was the need to place Business Effectiveness over Efficiency.

Building Customer TRUST During Difficult Times

Compelling article on trust in advertising/marketing from Marketing Week

Video Introduction

Reid Overcash, CEO, Heron Martech



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Trust in Advertising (and Marketing) is Imperative with your Customers

This is a terrific and very timely article written by Keith Weed, President of the Advertising Federation in Great Britain for Marketing Week. This is about what I call the Big "T" word, i.e. TRUST. I will summarize here and nearly everything should be in quotation marks but you might want to click on this short op-ed piece. I'm substituting marketing rather than just advertising since it should include all aspects of outreach and communications.

"Our Trust Working Group recently commissioned industry experts Nick Manning and Derek Morris to work with Credos director Karen Fraser and her team to conduct a full review of available data, alongside qualitative interviews with a select group of the UK's biggest advertisers, their agencies and leading media owners. From this, they drew up five key actions, each supported with a series of questions, to help marketers improve the public's experience of advertising."

The five key measures all advertisers (marketers) must undertake are:

  • Make your advertising (marketing) welcome in people's lives
  • Place business effectiveness above efficiency
  • Achieve full visibility of where your advertising (marketing) goes
  • Ensure every impact and exposure matters
  • Deploy the necessary resources to track, measure and manage this program


The author concludes:

"A bond forged in times of difficulty can be the strongest bond of all and if we want the public to trust us again, we need to demonstrate we are on their side when they need us."


We've been discussing this TRUST concept for some time now and how ShareDirect is custom built to help you help your customers and prospects. And it's far less expensive than most of the other activities you might be conducting.

See my related post on The Big "T" Word



Forrester: Predictions 2020

On the Precipice of Far-Reaching Change

Customers

Human beings are social animals driven to make decisions based on their need for affiliation and the wider impact of their choices. Today's customers live in tumultuous times. Disinformation campaigns, social isolation, wealth inequality, climate change, and political unrest surround them. As a result, they want to align their purchases with their values. Consumers appreciate experiences that spark delight. They love experiences that spark hope.

Customer Value

In 2020, the top CMOs will be responsible for all that surrounds the customer. They'll recognize that the best mechanism to drive growth is a strategically planned ecosystem that delivers value to customers throughout their lifecycle. To establish a successful ecosystem, CMOs will thread the needle between employee experience, customer experience, brand purpose, creative, and technology, imbuing all these crucial areas with customer obsession.

Customer Experience

The sheer complexity of CX has proved daunting, even as CX's importance grows increasingly apparent. Firms that have made the least headway will cut their programs in frustration. Meanwhile, companies that have started realizing the benefits of CX will double down, simultaneously shoring up their fundamentals and innovating.

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View the Full Report


Forrester: Predictions 2020
"If 2020 could be encapsulated into one word, that word would be energy. Consumer energy as consumers become more values-based, constructing personal ecosystems and forcing firms to take sides on social issues."
View Full Report

Establish a New Level of Emotional Loyalty with your Customer

A Fantastic Study from the CMO Council

This expansive report has much more in it than can be represented here. But I tried to pull out a few quotes that will provide some real world context.

Loyalty, by definition, is a bond – a faithful allegiance or connection to a person, cause, government or even organization. Yet for some organizations looking to develop customer relationships rooted in loyalty to their brand, the definition is closer to a scheme or program that ties the connection of loyalty to the accrual of points, perks and privileges. It is, for some, another campaign and, perhaps, another excuse to get lost in performance and efficiency metrics and lose sight of the customer. Far too often, loyalty is a tactic to drive relationships instead of being the foundation of the relationship itself.


Yet the reality is that today’s consumer is making their transactional decisions around a new set of attributes. While product and price are still key elements, attributes centered around shared values, a common mindset and the foundational relationship that has been built between the brand and buyer over time are all increasingly critical factors. Customers actually want to "like" – if not "love" – the brands they do business with… they want to see themselves, from their realities to their aspirations, embedded in each purchase.


Top Goals to Drive Growth and Profitability
  • Find opportunities to upsell & cross-sell
  • Deepen relationships through dynamic experiences
  • Unify view of experiences to gain better understanding of customers
  • Engage at a cadence that secures trust
  • Shift thinking away from campaigns and towards long-term engagement

To be sure, this next phase of engagement will include an organization-wide mindset shift... it will demand CMOs to serve as cultural change agents. It will ask organizations to think and feel differently about their customers… and to take specific and intentional steps to actually lean in with emotion and not just schemes, promotions or gimmicks.

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Take a very good look at this study from the CMO Council.

The Pathway to Syzygy for Marketing and Sales

Strategic Alignment for Customer Success

Syzygy... Pronounced: siz-uh-jee

It's a word that astronomers would most likely be familiar with, and possibly even poets. Syzygy is an alignment of three celestial objects, as the sun, the earth, and either the moon or a planet so it actually describes the perfect alignment of three celestial bodies.

But it can also reference an alignment in other things and that could include a company or organization, their communications and their customers, members, or others in their ecosystem.

We all realize there is no such thing as perfect alignment in Sales, Marketing, Customer Success organizations, Account Management, IT and other areas of any organization. Connecting data points, customer behavior information, budgets, staffing talents all go into where you are and how far you can go.

As goals are often aspirational it pays to start small and work your way up. One great way to begin is by achieving strategic alignment through Personalized Engagement to help achieve Customer Success.

The Syzygy you could be achieving:

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Are Brands Missing the Point of Personalization?

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Maximize Impact by Rethinking Personalization

Gathering and analyzing consumer data to deliver a tailored interaction between the brand and the consumer.

We recently participated in a webinar from Gartner that showed some amazing research and guidance for marketing personalization. The presenter was Alex De Fursac Gash, Gartner Director, Marketing Advisory in Europe. I'm going to report to you this week and over the next two weeks the three key concepts that came out of the presentation (at least for me and hopefully relevant to you).

I'll mention here several more general points from the study about the importance of personalization in marketing and sales.
  1. 55% of budgets are continuing to increase for Personalized Customer Engagement, some dramatic, some by a smaller percentage.
  2. Consumers expect and appreciate brands that personalize messaging and communications to them, but there are limits.
  3. There are a range of well-defined benefits to personalization:
    • Relevant messages that capture attention
    • Growing and magnifying the relationship
    • Driving purchase decisions
The most important thing at the outset is to start from the customer or consumer point of view (rather than your own).

"Help me understand how to use the products effectively."

"Can you save me some time?"

"You are familiar with me and my preferences."

I highly recommend that this 30 minutes of your time will be well spend if you are interested in this subject. Next week I'll describe how to best optimize your Personalized Engagement program with ShareDirect and otherwise. The following week I'll bring up the "what not to do."

Customer Experience (Success), Personalized Engagement, Relationship Management

Personalized Engagement is at the core

Learn From The Leaders

How do Customer Experience Leading firms create such positive, memorable impressions on the people they serve? It doesn’t happen by accident. They all embrace some basic tenets when shaping their customer experience – principles that can very likely be applied to your own organization:

They aim for more than customer satisfaction.

Satisfied customers defect all the time. And customers who are merely satisfied are far less likely to drive business growth through referrals, repeat purchases and reduced price sensitivity. Maximizing the return on customer experience investments requires shaping interactions that cultivate loyalty, not just satisfaction.

They nail the basics, and then deliver pleasant surprises.

To achieve excellence, the Leaders execute on the basics exceptionally well, minimizing common customer frustrations and annoyances. They then focus on “nice to have” elements and other pleasant surprises, all of which help to create memorable peaks in the experience that strengthen customer engagement.

They understand that great experiences are intentional and emotional.

The Leading companies leave nothing to chance. They understand the universe of touchpoints that comprise their customer experience and they manage each of them very intentionally – choreographing the interaction so it not only addresses customers’ rational expectations, but also stirs their emotions in a positive way.

They shape customer impressions through cognitive science.

The Leading companies manage both the reality and the perception of their customer experience. They understand how the human mind interprets experiences and forms memories, and they use that knowledge of cognitive science to create more positive and loyalty-enhancing customer impressions.

They recognize the link between the customer and employee experience.

Happy, engaged employees help create happy, loyal customers (who, in turn, help create more happy, engaged employees!). The value of this virtuous cycle cannot be overstated, and it’s why the most successful companies address both the customer and the employee sides of this equation.

Building Digital Relationships Through Personalization

Bi-Directional Personalization is key to improved customer engagement

What is Bi-Directional Personalization?

Recent studies show 65% of business buyers are likely to switch brands if a vendor does not personalize communications to their company. So, building personalized engagement with your customer is not an option but an imperative. ShareDirect has the unique mission of providing your organization Bi-Directional Personalization.

View Document 


Get Ready for the Future of Personalization

The Bottom Line: Get Started Now!

Get started. Developing a personalization capability is a journey to get to the full suite of capabilities needed for true dynamic personalization: always-on, real-time, one-to-one communication across the consumer ecosystem.

The first step is to determine which use cases to focus on (converting new customers, increasing spend of loyal customers, etc.) and put an agile team on each of them to rapidly test and learn which offers and interactions best deliver. This hands-on approach quickly helps people develop real experience and expertise. Even as teams move quickly, however, it’s important to keep one eye on the end state so that you can effectively plan in order to make better decisions about people, technology, and investment.

Read about these key points:

How to turn the future into reality?

  • Investing in technology and customer data
  • How to utilize talent
  • Being agile
  • Protecting privacy
  • Getting started and take the first step

Three major shifts over the next five years will make personalization more personal:

  • Physical spaces will be ‘digitized’
  • Empathy will scale
  • Brands will use ecosystems to personalize journeys end-to-end

View Article


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The Big “T” Word

In this new digital world customer TRUST is even more important and can be achieved

This may one of the most important communications I have shared in the last year of my use of our ShareDirect platform. Throughout my career and personal life I have never liked using the word “TRUST” when discussing my relationship with others. I’m sure you’ve heard people in regular conversation say, “Trust me,” as they try to make a particular point. In almost every instance I automatically assume the opposite. Why is that? Asking for TRUST should be unnecessary if you have passed the “Trust You” test already.

However as I look at this from a customer point of view the ultimate goal of any good business is and ought to be gaining customer TRUST.

In my humble view there are three components of building customer TRUST:
  1. There must be a realization that TRUST is only earned through deeds and attitude. It is not demanded or required or asked for. Although it is said that “Trust is a two way street,” it is more important to have earned it from your customer first.
  2. Along with the correct corporate attitude the foundation of building customer TRUST is demonstrating you know and understand each customer and you want to help them. We have made this point before from the Gartner research.
    Click here for that study.
  3. Personalized Engagement with each customer is the key to building TRUST in a meaningful way. Communications should be from someone who is a Subject Matter Expert who can be a Trusted Advisor.
Customer Trust


I made some purchases for my dog at PetSmart over the last year. I joined their loyalty program and received blind emails for the past year that focus on cat food. Needless to say I have stopped going in there.

The End-Result of all of this is building long term trusting relationships creates recurring revenue and much more profitable growth.
See the chart here.

The purpose of ShareDirect is to help you build TRUST with your customer(s) through Personalized Engagement with Bi-Directional communication focused on how you can help them. We offer this expertise and technology to help you achieve this most important strategic goal.

If you have any thoughts on this subject respond and let me know. I will post them on my follow-up communication.


Customer Trust


If you’re not meeting expectations customers will find someone who will, as according to Forrester Analytics, 54% say they’re willing to experiment in any market.

Forrester’s Customer Experience Index shows a 20-point difference in sentiment when customers judge the quality of a brand’s overall service and sense that they are rewarded for their loyalty.

When marketers fail to understand the complexity and nuance of how customers’ core characteristics evolve, people lose trust in them.


Customer Trust


A Technology Blueprint for Personalization at Scale
McKinsey & Company

Personalization at scale has the potential to create $1.7 trillion to $3 trillion in new value (Exhibit 1). Capturing this value will require mastering the technologies and addressing the organizational disconnects—all while forging trust with customers and protecting their data.

Personalization at scale relies on an organization’s ability to orchestrate the 4Ds: Data, Decisioning, Design, and Distribution. Addressing the technology in each of these Ds is the key to unlocking the full power of personalization (Exhibit 2).

Show me the metrics

Introduction to the reporting, dashboards and Engagement Score provided within ShareDirect

One of our unique benefits is how we provide a wealth of metrics and data analytics on a complete turnkey technology dashboard that covers the detail of each customer all the way up to the summary of all customers and users of the platform. We call this Federated Dashboards. There is one for each user (sales person) and one for their manager for several sales people and one at the top of the pyramid for a VP of Sales or CMO with the entire picture and the ability to drill down as needed.

Key Questions

  • Are your customer-facing reps able to personally engage with their customers between visits or meetings?
  • What elements of Customer Engagement are having the most positive effect?
  • Are there periods of natural advancement or decline in Customer Engagement?
  • What triggers do you have that there may be a threat or opportunity hidden with some customers?

Federated Dashboards and Reporting

  • Each site representative has a dashboard with individual engagement metrics for their engagement site - all aggregated to an overall corporate dashboard.
  • Corporate dashboard with full control and full metrics from each engagement site.  Manage and direct content from a console and access full analytics.
  • Provides exclusive Customer Engagement Score composed of key metrics, custom weighted for each customer and each site representative.

ShareDirect Engagement Score

  • Proprietary algorithm that determines Engagement trend over time
  • Simple at-a-glance rating of customer engagement success
  • Visibility and ranking of customer-facing representatives
  • Based on over a dozen unique Engagement measurement vectors
  • Weighting and scoring of Engagement vectors is unique to each customer
  • Guide for further analysis and consultation on areas of opportunity and threats and Engagement to ROI calculation

Getting Credit

Will your company and your customer-facing reps get credit for building customer relationships?

There is very little written in marketing or especially martech literature about “Getting Credit.” I'm not referring to financial credit such as credit cards, credit score or getting a loan from a bank although you could make the case there could be some similar processes. This is about the customer recognizing your efforts to serve them with your key customer-facing representatives and the branded promise you make to those customers.

“Getting Credit” is about making sure the customer understands who you are and what you stand for and how it applies to them.

 I learned this while my brand marketing firm was working with a major restaurant chain in the 1990s that was undergoing a major transformation from a budget steakhouse to a large buffet concept with a bakery built in. I was fortunate to work with a brilliant CMO who understood the need for customers to see the process and result, in some cases the smell and the activity it took to achieve freshly baked yeast rolls, cookies, buns, etc.

Operationally the bakery was placed in the middle of the dining area. You could see the yeast rolls being placed in the ovens and when they came out the aroma was intoxicating. They had a brass bell that they would ring when those rolls would come out of the oven and storms of people would chase up to the bakery fighting for those hot rolls that smelled so good. This CMO knew how this worked. He made sure that as much of the kitchen as reasonable, especially the grilling and other visual activities, would be exposed to the dining room and their customers would respond appropriately. All that work on behalf of each customer he referred to as “Getting Credit.”

I have taken this idea to many other industries in my career over the past two decades and now have introduced it into marketing technology as one of the end benefits of our ShareDirect platform. All too often communications from a company to their customers bypass their customer-facing representatives, sales people, account managers, etc. They lose the opportunity to give credit to those front-line people who are supposed to be the Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) on their accounts. They lose that opportunity to personally engage their customers in a meaningful and optimal way. They lose the opportunity to “Get Credit” for what might otherwise be an effective message.

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With ShareDirect we are offering the only automated personalized engagement technology. You may have the best, most compelling message built around your caring and interest in serving your customer but it could easily fly completely over your customers' heads unless you provide a mechanism for you to receive “credit” for your noble works.

That CMO taught me a game-changing marketing concept. He is now retired, living in Colorado and remains a friend and frequent advisor. He probably didn't realize how we would eventually apply this through technology.



The Marketing Technology Stack

Personalization Tools are part of the "Core Foundation" of the Martech Stack

How sturdy is your marketing technology foundation?

The article, Martech Spending Continuing to Rise, is not a surprise as nearly half of the BtB Martech budgets are increasing for 2019. From marketing automation to email, customer experience and social media marketing there is no doubt that the projections of doubling over the next 4 years might be conservative. And further, Gartner reports that a quarter of all marketing budgets are dedicated to Martech.

In my view the big news is found on the chart of the Martech Stack:


Personalization Tools are part of the "Core Foundation" of the Martech Stack. The ShareDirect Personalized Engagement Platform is the first really unique technology that allows Bi-Directional Personalization and machine learning to provide content and metrics that truly address each individual customer's needs and interests.

As I have said before this platform is a "Core Foundation" to any marketing plan. I refer to it as a marketing and sales imperative.

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Platform Preview

Learn more about ShareDirect


What is ShareDirect?

ShareDirect is a SaaS platform that provides personal engagement sites for customer-facing personnel.

The engagement sites can be managed at a group level or individually - and, each site is personalized for the representative and for each visitor - we call this bi-directional personalization.

ShareDirect also provides easy, intuitive email tools for outreach to new and existing prospects.
 
  

Learn More About ShareDirect

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