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Converting New Shoppers to Constant Customers

While projections and outcomes for Black Friday and Cyber Monday took up many headlines, I found that the deeper part of those shopping dynamics told a far more interesting story. Sure, the shopping frenzy weekend was an overall positive result for retailers, but upon closer inspection, the numbers pointed to the successes of e-commerce rather than in-store sales.

That's not necessarily news for today's marketers, but what it should be is a reminder that changing behaviors are an entry point for fostering relationships with consumers. Smart, personalized communications are an engaging welcome mat for customers who are new to your brand, because getting a new customer is one thing - getting them back again is quite another.


Retention Science found that gross sales for 2014 Black Friday to Cyber Monday jumped 649 percent, on average, compared to a typical Friday-to-Monday period for its eCommerce customers. The same companies saw a 22 percent increase in average order value, indicating that holiday promotions and marketing campaigns were effective in getting people to spend.



So while that continuing trend is certainly reason to celebrate, it's still just a jumping off point. The same study also found that existing customers spent 30 percent more than newer shoppers in the time period between Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Moreover, the existing shoppers were 16 percent more likely to make multiple purchases during that period.



That begs the question - are your holiday campaigns coming full circle and engaging a consumer with the foresight that they'll be the latter data set next year?



Preference management, the active collection, maintenance and distribution of unique consumer characteristics, such as product interest, communication channel preference and frequency of communication is the ideal first step for a new customer. By starting off on the right foot - learning what would make them a returning customer, engaging with them in the ways they self-identify - you have a better chance of converting that first-time customer into a long-term shopper. Come next year's shopping season, you can be confident that last year's new shoppers are this year's existing customers.



Eric Tejeda is the Director of Product Marketing for PossibleNOW and CompliancePoint. Eric supports the organization’s growth objectives by productizing and launching innovative new products and services that fill critical needs in the marketplace. 

With 25 years of experience, Eric firmly believes that permission-based marketing and preference management is a mega trend and the path to success for marketers today. 

Follow me on Twitter: @EricTejeda | Connect on LinkedIn: Eric Tejeda

Omnichannel Opportunities

Savvy marketers understand that the holiday season offers a two-part opportunity: the sales themselves, and vital information about shoppers captured during their busiest time of year. Executed correctly, the season can be a preference collection bonanza that boosts opt-in email marketing lists and populates databases with birthdays, shoe sizes, cell phone numbers and topics of interest.

But remember: in 2014, 53 percent of online shoppers were specifically searching and purchasing on smartphones or tablets, up from 41 percent the previous year. More than $1 trillion of all retail sales were influenced by shopping-related mobile searches. That’s  nearly a full third of sales.

Those are big numbers—figures that represent vast opportunities for deeper connections with consumers, or, if your omnichannel preference collection isn’t up to par, a great big stocking full of coal.

Simple, single-channel preference collection, such as your run-of-the-mill email preference center, will miss out on the customer knowledge and engagement opportunities that come with the seasonal sales.

Effective preference management – the active collection, maintenance and distribution of unique consumer characteristics, such as product interest, channel preference and frequency of communication – should be implemented at every meaningful point where company and customer intersect. For many companies, that means mobile, desktop, live customer service, social media and more.

It is also imperative that once preferences are collected at a given touchpoint, they are passed seamlessly across the company and reflected in future interactions. A customer completing a purchase on a tablet will expect to have the ability to change their preference information for all communication channels as part of that transaction.

Listening to the needs and choices of customers some of the time, or only through selected channels, derails the engagement process. And this is the worst time of year to screw this up.

This holiday season, don’t just settle for the sale. Get the customer’s permission and preferences as well. After all, that’s the gift that keeps on giving. 





About the Author: 
Eric V. Holtzclaw is  Chief Strategist  of PossibleNOW. He's a researcher, writer, serial entrepreneur and challenger-of-conventional wisdom. His book with Wiley Publishing on consumer behavior - Laddering: Unlocking the Potential of Consumer Behavior - hit bookstores last summer. Eric helps strategically guide companies with the implementation of enterprise-wide preference management solutions.



Follow me on Twitter: @eholtzclaw | Connect on LinkedIn: Eric Holtzclaw

Preference Collection Best Practices: How Consumers Reveal Preferences

Preference Management Video Series

Now that we’ve established that preferences are self-reported consumer opinions related to potential interactions between customer and company, the next consideration is how you might go about gathering preferences. When consumers opt-in with their preferences on things like product interest, channel of choice and frequency of communication, your company will want to be prepared for that conversation and follow best practices to get best outcomes.

The conversation the consumer wants to have with you is a progressive one, that reflects their evolving interests in what your business has to offer and their perceptions of what benefits they’ll get in return for sharing their information.

Time and again, research shows that when you’re looking for consumers to provide information, they’re more likely to do so when the opt-in method in presented in context, offers clear benefits, and is easy to understand and complete.


In this video, Chief Strategist Eric Holtzclaw describes the different ways customers reveal their preferences and the strategies you can use to leverage the intersection of consumer and company interests. 


In the following weeks, we'll continue to roll out videos to guide you through the implementation of preference management. If you haven't yet explored our Resource Center, you can download the Implementation of Preference Management whitepaper here.



Eric Tejeda is the Director of Product Marketing for PossibleNOW and CompliancePoint. Eric supports the organization’s growth objectives by productizing and launching innovative new products and services that fill critical needs in the marketplace. 

With 25 years of experience, Eric firmly believes that permission-based marketing and preference management is a mega trend and the path to success for marketers today. 

Follow me on Twitter: @EricTejeda | Connect on LinkedIn: Eric Tejeda

ICYMI: Preferences, Privacy and Personalization in the News

Oreo Colorfilled packaging offers personalized touch amid e-commerce push

The classic black-and-white cookie gets a colorful upgrade with customized packaging that features seasonal images and personalized messages so that consumers can decorate the designs themselves. The personalized packs are part of the company’s expansion into e-commerce. Click here to read more. 

Walmart’s Use of Sci-fi Tech To Spot Shoplifters Raises Privacy Questions

Retail superstore Walmart admitted to using facial recognition software in some of its stores, facing criticism for the biometric system that uses virtual grids to identify face prints and then alerts store associates when a previously known shoplifter is identified. While other stores refused to admit to using the software, the technology can be flipped to identify loyal customers. Click here to read more. 

Facebook Says It Will Enable Safety Check During More Human Disasters, Following Criticism

After the terror attacks in Paris, Facebook enabled a feature called “Safety Check” which allows people in a specific region to notify Facebook connections of their safety. The Paris incident was unique from previous Safety Checks because it was in response to a human disaster rather than a natural disaster. The social media company was criticized in the wake of the Paris attacks for not also using the feature for bombings in Beirut the day before, but has vowed to use recent feedback to personalize Facebook experiences for users in affected areas. Click here to read more. 

In a first, the FCC is fining a major cable company for getting hacked

Although those affected numbered fewer than 100 people, the breadth of data accessed by hackers that infiltrated Cox Communications’ customer information proved to be severe enough to earn punishment. The Federal Communications Company fined Cox nearly $600,000 for the data breach. Click here to read more. 

You, Only Better

By tweaking nutrition and exercise, “biohackers” believe self-tracking and choice ingredients can optimize wellness. Fitness trackers and the availability of personal data elevate the movement while investors have poured money into ventures like Bulletproof, a company that spikes its coffee with butter and oil, and whose founder says he lost 1000 pounds and boosted his I.Q. by researching the brand’s suggested diet plan. Click here to read more. 






Eric Tejeda is the Director of Product Marketing for PossibleNOW and CompliancePoint. Eric supports the organization’s growth objectives by productizing and launching innovative new products and services that fill critical needs in the marketplace. 

With 25 years of experience, Eric firmly believes that permission-based marketing and preference management is a mega trend and the path to success for marketers today. 

Follow me on Twitter: @EricTejeda | Connect on LinkedIn: Eric Tejeda

Welcoming the Webroomers


With the rise of ecommerce, brands initially took a look at the other edge of the technology sword and declared that “showrooming” was the new enemy. Showrooming is the idea that shoppers visit brick-and-mortar stores to check out their potential purchases before returning home to make the final purchases online after comparing prices.

But there’s actually an even more technologically advanced version of shopping that’s something retailers can embrace. Shopping studies show that it’s actually “webrooming” that’s on the rise and leads to bigger overall purchases. Webrooming is the reverse of showrooming – when shoppers conduct their information-gathering prior to going to a store. Consumers compare prices online, finalize their lists, and then head to stores in order to make final purchases.

Survey results from The Harris Poll indicated that roughly half of Americans have showroomed, while roughly seven in ten Americans saying they’ve webroomed. Not only that, but showroomers spent an average of $156.40 (a steady decline from 2013 and 2012 numbers – $174 and $211.80 respectively), while webroomers clock in with receipts averaging $200.70 for in-store purchases after researching online. To put it plainly: shoppers who engage online spend more in stores.

The upside for retailers is the ability to embrace the research phase by utilizing integrated outreach and personalized communications. Preference management – the active collection, maintenance and distribution of unique consumer characteristics, such as product interest, communication channel preference and frequency of communication – can pre-empt shopping decisions and help customers in the midst of their holiday hustle and bustle.

When you can synthesize data provided by customers themselves, you already have a leg up on their potential shopping list. Product interest and communication channel preference are vital in heading consumers off at the pass and handing them an effective, personalized tool.

Unprepared brands may be wringing their hands over webrooming, but companies that have already adapted to modern shoppers’ habits by utilizing preference management techniques are clearly experiencing growing returns. How did your past years reflect consumers’ newer shopping habits and how will this year compare?







Rob Tate
As Vice President of Sales, Rob is responsible for growing the client base and market share and helping his sales team achieve their goals. He also develops partnership opportunities and industry relationships. Rob focuses on generating consistent results, utilizing sales and opportunity management tools and implementing best-of-class sales methodologies all of which have enabled him to build a scalable sales organization. He continually studies how metrics, leadership, culture, and innovation drive business value in the SaaS and marketing automation fields.

The Customer is Wrong and Cannot Be Trusted

Haven't we all had those beyond awful customer service experiences? I recently had one of "those" experiences and was stunned that every interaction and communication with this major brand assumed that the customer was wrong and could not be trusted. It is shocking that this kind of behavior is still so pervasive today.

According to Shep Hyken, customer service expert, "Customer service is not a department, it is a philosophy."

And, this is why so many companies still get it wrong. Most customer service departments are disconnected units built as battle grounds to defend corporate policies or disseminate complicated procedures that presume the customer is always wrong.

Companies must finally fix this by imposing customer engagement and retention behaviors and metrics for every channel used by customers.

According to the report Customers 2020 by Walker Information in collaboration with Customer Think and the Chief Customer Officer Council, by 2020 customer experience will overtake price and product as the key brand differentiator.

Here are some other stats to consider:
These insights are corroborated by findings from Voice of Customer Learnings from 15,000+ hours of research conducted by our firm, ERDM;
  • High quality customer experiences must occur at every point of contact, every medium and every part of the customer journey.
  • High value experiences are now a key competitive differentiator for consumers.

Marriott International Puts People First

With a slogan, putting people first, Marriot International has recently been named to the "2015 Customer Service Hall of Fame" by 24/7 Wall Street.

On their website Marriott International notes:
  • We put people first - Take care of associates and they will take care of the customers.
  • We pursue excellence - Marriott's reputation for superior customer service dates back to J. Willard Marriott's original goal for his business... We take pride in the details...
  • We embrace change - We're driven to continually challenge the status quo and anticipate our customers' changing needs.
Marriott trains its staff to understand each other so that it can understand consumers. According to Nancy Curtin Morris, Marriott's National Director of Training:

"Our focus on customer service has been strong for more than 70 years. (The ability of) managers and their staff to understand and relate to customers - and that is where the payoff comes in..."

Marriott's Second quarter 2015 net income totaled $240 million, a 25 percent increase over 2014 second quarter net income.


TakeAways

  1. Don't think of customer service as call-center or chat based. Think of customer service as a company-wide commitment that transcends every touchpoint throughout the customer journey.
  2. Companies need to develop customer service policies and metrics that are relationship builders rather than merely avenues to defend company policies or disseminate impersonal information to customers who cannot be trusted.
  3. Train employees on communication and empathy so they can better navigate situations with each other and with customers to more efficiently and effectively.

According to Scott Broetzmann, president of Customer Care Measurement & Consulting, "Many companies today are simply awful at resolving customer problems..." And in the Arizona State University's "customer rage" study it was noted that "satisfaction with service is actually no higher than it was in the 1970s."

Companies need to take a new look at old, outdated customer service that cultivates a combative "us vs. them mentality." Companies must rethink customer service as a revenue generating skill that builds, repairs and grows long-term relationships.



About the Author:
Ernan Roman Direct Marketing's Customer Experience strategies achieve consistent double-digit increases in response and revenue for their clients, which include IBM, MassMutual, QVC, Microsoft, and Symantec Corp.

As a leader in providing Voice of Customer research-based guidance, ERDM has conducted over 10,000 hours of interviews with their clients' customers and prospects, to gain an in-depth understanding of their expectations for high-value relationships.

The results achieved by ERDM's VoC-based strategies earned Ernan Roman induction into the Marketing Hall of Fame.

Visit his blog at: http://ernanroman.blogspot.com/

Seamless Preference Management with Oracle Eloqua


PossibleNOW recently launched MyPreferences for Oracle Eloqua, an enterprise preference management application available to marketers through the Oracle Marketing AppCloud. By integrating MyPreferences for Oracle Eloqua, CMOs and their teams can seamlessly collect, store and distribute customer and prospect preference data in order to synchronize their brand's communications.

Because Oracle Marketing Cloud's modern marketing solutions connect cross-channel, content, and social marketing with data management and activation on a single system of record, it's essential for enterprise B2B and B2C marketers to integrate preference management solutions. Preference management, the active collection, maintenance and distribution of unique consumer characteristics, such as product interest, communication channel preference and frequency of communication, is a valuable tool in customizing and synchronizing conversations with consumers.

On Oracle Eloqua, attracting and retaining customers becomes simplified with customer-centric personalization that's data-driven and compliant. The components of MyPreferences for Oracle Eloqua are threefold: MyPreferences Sync enables marketers to easily integrate preference data within a central repository in near real-time, ensuring synchronized communication preferences, frequency preferences and contact preference attributes; MyPreferences Connector enables marketers to update their database with up-to-date preferences from channels outside of Oracle Eloqua, allowing for informed campaigns; MyPreferences Decision Service allows marketers to drive campaign delivery based on preference information captured through other channels and departments without incurring the overhead and cost of storing all of that data in Oracle Eloqua.

"Integrating PossibleNOW's MyPreferences with Oracle Eloqua gives clients the immediate benefits of enterprise preference management while enabling a first step toward enterprise-wide preference management strategy," said Ron Patrick, Director of Product Architecture at PossibleNOW. "Marketers using MyPreferences solutions have reported retention rates as high as 95 percent. Clients who have the ability to track stated preferences, opt-ins and even opt-downs can focus on delivering their most targeted campaigns."

Oracle Marketing Cloud customers who have an active Oracle Eloqua license and MyPreferences license can visit the Oracle Topliners community site to install the MyPreferences Sync application and begin integrating MyPreferences for Oracle Eloqua in the Oracle Marketing Cloud.




Eric Tejeda is the Director of Product Marketing for PossibleNOW and CompliancePoint. Eric supports the organization’s growth objectives by productizing and launching innovative new products and services that fill critical needs in the marketplace. 

With 25 years of experience, Eric firmly believes that permission-based marketing and preference management is a mega trend and the path to success for marketers today. 

Follow me on Twitter: @EricTejeda | Connect on LinkedIn: Eric Tejeda

Reaching a Moving Target

As retailers gear up for the holiday season, you can bet they're looking for the biggest bang for their buck in attracting potential shoppers. One of today's sought-after technological innovations, automated targeting, seem like an ideal solution for retailers on a budget who are hoping to find the magic bullet with a precise, engaged audience. They're not wrong: Targeted, programmed ads are a smart way to drill down to the demographic they're looking for. There's a caveat though - while gathering demographic data, the targeting is often focused on past behaviors. Was that suburban mom recently shopping for athletic shoes or a new car? It's hard to know from a programming point of view whether she's already purchased a pair of Reeboks or an SUV.

And there's no way for her to correct that conversation either. Consider that if you already had that information, you could suggest compression running gear or a jogging stroller, catchall floor mats or an infant car seat. The automated hypertargeting might be a foot in the door, but it's not a conversation. Customers are moving targets, and a marketing plan should take into account the scope of the customer journey - beyond the single slice of life that earned them a targeted ad.

While a targeted ad may remind a customer of an item they were looking for previously, it can't engage them beyond a visual blip. With preference management - the active collection, maintenance and distribution of unique consumer characteristics, such as product interest, communication channel preference and frequency of communication - you're more likely to get a full view of your customer. By using their self-provided information to engage them, the consumers are apt to turn to you in the beginning of their customer journeys. Meaning they're no longer a moving target, they're taking you along on the trip.






About the Author: 
Eric V. Holtzclaw is  Chief Strategist  of PossibleNOW. He's a researcher, writer, serial entrepreneur and challenger-of-conventional wisdom. His book with Wiley Publishing on consumer behavior - Laddering: Unlocking the Potential of Consumer Behavior - hit bookstores last summer. Eric helps strategically guide companies with the implementation of enterprise-wide preference management solutions.



Follow me on Twitter: @eholtzclaw | Connect on LinkedIn: Eric Holtzclaw

Preference Collection Best Practices: Definition of Preferences and the Collection Process

Preference Management Video Series

Once your preference management program has unrolled and your company understands the power of preferences, it's essential to be sure that everyone is on the same page about what constitutes preferences and how they'll be collected.

We define preferences as self-reported consumer opinions as they relate to interactions between the customer and company on things like product interest, channel of choice and frequency of communication. Furthermore, those preferences are expressly stated by the customer themselves, not mined from profile data, purchase history or demographics. By centralizing the storage of your customers' preferences, you're also able to provide the ability for effective communications between the company and consumer, bypassing typical issues companies experience that have siloed information.

There are three categories we can use to describe the different types of preferences customers will want to share, each of which create actionable information and guide conversations: Contact preferences, product preferences and personal preferences. In this video, Rob Tate, Director of Enterprise Sales, describes the different ways customers might indicate those types of preferences and how you can act on them.





In the following weeks, we'll continue to roll out videos to guide you through the best practices of preference management. If you haven't yet explored our Resource Center, you can download the Preference Collection Best Practices whitepaper here.




Eric Tejeda is the Director of Product Marketing for PossibleNOW and CompliancePoint. Eric supports the organization’s growth objectives by productizing and launching innovative new products and services that fill critical needs in the marketplace. 

With 25 years of experience, Eric firmly believes that permission-based marketing and preference management is a mega trend and the path to success for marketers today. 

Follow me on Twitter: @EricTejeda | Connect on LinkedIn: Eric Tejeda

The Right Channel at the Right Time

Quick question for your colleague who's on a lunch break? Might as well text. Need to check in with the kids for their dinner plans? They'll answer a text. Now do you have a grocery run request for the spouse? Yep, you should text.

In our multitasking, by-the-minute modern days, texting has become the quick, catchall communication. It's immediate, it's in your pocket, and despite its ubiquity, it still feels personal. It's no surprise that brands have seized the opportunity to reach consumers on a flexible channel with real-time communication opportunities.

Different modes of reaching customers have different advantages, but we don't have to remind you that you want to be where the customer is. In fact, a survey by The Harris Poll found that 93 percent of 18-34-year-olds use text messaging, and that 86 percent of 18-34-year-olds strongly or somewhat agree that it's frustrating to be tied to a phone or computer to wait for customer service help.

If we know that much, it's not hard to realize that one of the many channels your customers might want to use could also be specific to a type of communications they want. With great power comes great responsibility: Are you letting your customers untie themselves from desk-bound devices for certain customer experiences?

Preference management, the active collection, maintenance and distribution of unique consumer characteristics, such as product interest, communication channel preference and frequency of communication is the best way to figure out how, where and when your customers want to relate to you.

As marketing experts, we already know it's not just kids with noses buried in screens that are looking for text-based communications. We realize that providing customers opportunities for brand communications in different settings can let them set the pace and tone for certain communications. Whether their style is about dashing off a quick request, getting an immediate answer or having an in-depth conversation to solve a problem, make sure you’re speaking your customer's language.





About the Author: 
Eric V. Holtzclaw is  Chief Strategist  of PossibleNOW. He's a researcher, writer, serial entrepreneur and challenger-of-conventional wisdom. His book with Wiley Publishing on consumer behavior - Laddering: Unlocking the Potential of Consumer Behavior - hit bookstores last summer. Eric helps strategically guide companies with the implementation of enterprise-wide preference management solutions.



Follow me on Twitter: @eholtzclaw | Connect on LinkedIn: Eric Holtzclaw

ICYMI: Preferences, Privacy and Personalization in the News

'Peanutize Me' Latest in Personalized Movie-Marketing Apps

Ready-to-personalize memes on social media have proved a powerful marketing tool for the entertainment industry, with options to pose with Yoda in your profile picture, or remix the "Straight Outta Compton" imagery with your own location. The "Peanuts" movie is the latest in a string of films that offer a way for moviegoers to show off enthusiasm without experiencing (or sharing) a "hard-sell feeling." Click here to read more.

Feds: House Bill Could Make Cars More Vulnerable to Hackers

Internet-connected smart cars have made consumers and lawmakers nervous as reports of hacking prompted recalls and greater advocacy. A new bill, which aims to improve vehicle security, seems to provide privacy policies to vehicle owners, but regulators say the bill will backfire by overriding existing consumer protections. The large fines could also deter researchers from further testing of cars' security. Click here to read more.

Target's New Website Helps Trick-or-Treaters Find Best Candy Haunts in the Neighborhood

Just in time for Halloween, Target launches a mobile and desktop app, Treatster, that allows trick-or-treaters to up-vote homes giving out good candy, and therefore for fellow users to search out the popular locations. The more votes a place gets, the bigger the Target-branded jack-o'-lantern gets. Click here to read more.

T&Cs Change Tracker Puts Shifting Small-Print In The Spotlight

While consumers maintain concern over security, it's nearly impossible to keep up with lengthy terms and conditions notices, an issue solved with a new tracker. Watching T&Cs evolve with highlighted changes allows consumers to stay abreast of disclosures and privacy changes. Click here to read more.

Why Does Facebook Keep Suggesting You Friend Your Tinder Matches?

Keen social media users who use differing networks to find friends and dates have spotted an overlap of algorithms wherein previously unconnected potential dates appear as people you should know on other networks. The suggestions appear even if the people hadn't yet gone on a date, leading some to wonder how much the disparate apps are sharing your information, whether it's based on opt-ins, or simply smart searches. Click here to read more.






Eric Tejeda is the Director of Product Marketing for PossibleNOW and CompliancePoint. Eric supports the organization’s growth objectives by productizing and launching innovative new products and services that fill critical needs in the marketplace. 

With 25 years of experience, Eric firmly believes that permission-based marketing and preference management is a mega trend and the path to success for marketers today. 

Follow me on Twitter: @EricTejeda | Connect on LinkedIn: Eric Tejeda

Personalized Tech in “Back to the Future Part II”

Image Source
In 1989 Robert Zemeckis let us have a little peek at 2015 with Back to the Future Part II, the second film in the classic Marty McFly and Doc Brown time-travel trilogy. Well here we are in 2015, and despite many promises of self-lacing shoes and hoverboards, neither has truly come to fruition. What they did get right though, was a lot of intuitive, personalized technology.

Remember how biometrics were used for payment and identity in everyday situations? Tranquilized Jennifer is taken home when the police are able to identify her by thumbprint, Doc pays for a cab by pressing his finger to a tablet and Marty signs a petition for the clock tower in the same way. Keys, wallet and signatures disappeared in the movie's version of 2015 because each thumb-press interaction is an opt-in that provides only the information the service needs and doesn't unnecessarily divulge the person's other secure information. In a way, that reflects much of what modern consumers have come to expect - touchpoints that collect and use particular data while maintaining the ability to provide omnichannel experiences.

Without preference management - the active collection, maintenance and distribution of unique consumer characteristics, such as product interest, communication channel preference and frequency of communication - characters in Zemeckis' version of 2015 couldn't have had safe and seamless experiences in their smart homes, making purchases, or otherwise sharing personal information.

In our real-life version of 2015, we know that today's consumers expect personalized experiences, but they are more apt to opt-in when they're aware of how their information is being used. This means that brands are able to give consumers control of the conversation while enhancing their experiences with personalization. Moreover, preference management has the ability to separate your brands from others by providing a comparison point to companies that haven't undertaken preference management initiatives and therefore can't create personalized experiences while maintaining compliance.

In the movie's version of 2015, the characters expect that their technology will recognize them, anticipate their needs and keep their data safe. Can you say that about your consumers' experiences with your brand? Preference management will get you there - flux capacitor not required.



Eric Tejeda is the Director of Product Marketing for PossibleNOW and CompliancePoint. Eric supports the organization’s growth objectives by productizing and launching innovative new products and services that fill critical needs in the marketplace. 

With 25 years of experience, Eric firmly believes that permission-based marketing and preference management is a mega trend and the path to success for marketers today. 

Follow me on Twitter: @EricTejeda | Connect on LinkedIn: Eric Tejeda

Implementation of Preference Management: Tracking Results and Proving ROI

Preference Management Video Series

A limited scope of engagement for an initial preference management project allows enterprises to build a simple, gradual case for additional investment. By streamlining metrics, something as simple as an opt-down, instead of an opt-out, can prove immense value in a mere 90 days. A powerful business case is within reach if you follow a few actionable steps in order to track and demonstrate ROI.

First, have a clearly outlined initial implementation – that means a limited scope and a clear benchmark, even as simple as converting opt-outs to opt-ins. Next, you'll want to work from a reasonable timetable in order to manage expectations while allowing time to demonstrate value. Third, come to the table with the proper assessment – a detailed "before" picture will help you work from the current state of affairs. Once the program is in place, check in frequently for progress or course-corrections – often you'll be working with internal departments who wouldn't otherwise communicate with each other. Next, translate preference collection to bottom-line value by assessing opportunity costs of opt-outs and therefore the value for a targeted opt-in. Finally, use these assessments to explain the bigger picture in order to champion the efforts and successes of preference management.

By the time you've run a first preference management project by properly preparing, managing a gradual growth as well as centralizing data, proving ROI should be easier. Enterprises ready for greater preference management expansions will be on the right track to listen and learn from consumers.





In the following weeks, we'll continue to roll out videos to guide you through the implementation of preference management. If you haven't yet explored our Resource Center, you can download the Implementation of Preference Management whitepaper here.




Eric Tejeda is the Director of Product Marketing for PossibleNOW and CompliancePoint. Eric supports the organization’s growth objectives by productizing and launching innovative new products and services that fill critical needs in the marketplace. 

With 25 years of experience, Eric firmly believes that permission-based marketing and preference management is a mega trend and the path to success for marketers today. 

Follow me on Twitter: @EricTejeda | Connect on LinkedIn: Eric Tejeda

Assuming Your Numbers Make Sense

After seeing devastating flood damage in South Carolina, newscasters began repeating the phrase "thousand-year-storm" to describe what had happened. But many mistakenly interpreted the phrase to mean that the storm was likely to happen once every thousand years.

In actuality, the "thousand" is in reference to the likelihood of it happening in any year. You could actually experience a thousand-year-storm multiple times in a year. But don't let that stop armchair statisticians from describing it as something the area might have been "due" for. That hinges on the very human belief that events are somehow supposed to make sense rather than be completely random. In reality, a sodden neighborhood's chances of a three-day downpour is exactly the same, every year, forever.

In much the same way, marketers believe that vast data collection somehow leads to coherent data organization. We're collecting more and more of it every day, through every channel. And many of us believe that all that data will somehow add up to reveal a consistent identity - a unified picture of a consumer that aids personalization and customer experience.

But a global report conducted by Signal indicates that just six percent of marketers have figured out cross-channel identity. That means data fragmentation is an overwhelming challenge for a vast majority of marketers, putting them in the position of constantly playing catch-up while they juggle bits of a picture that don't make sense.

Obstacles like data collection and fragmentation mean that marketing measurement and personalization are out of reach-crucially important elements that could be solved with preference management. Preference management, the active collection, maintenance and distribution of unique consumer characteristics, such as product interest, communication channel preference and frequency of communication, is an essential tool in creating seamless user experiences, customer engagement and, most importantly, a whole picture where there were once just pieces. Having a lot of data is one thing, knowing how to connect it is another.

And the upside to this slow race? Anyone already confronting these issues is ahead in the game. Knowing that such a minuscule amount of marketers have the capabilities of cross-channel identity means that those who can figure it out now will stay in the lead and continue to offer consumers what they want.




About the Author: 
Eric V. Holtzclaw is  Chief Strategist  of PossibleNOW. He's a researcher, writer, serial entrepreneur and challenger-of-conventional wisdom. His book with Wiley Publishing on consumer behavior - Laddering: Unlocking the Potential of Consumer Behavior - hit bookstores last summer. Eric helps strategically guide companies with the implementation of enterprise-wide preference management solutions.



Follow me on Twitter: @eholtzclaw | Connect on LinkedIn: Eric Holtzclaw

ICYMI: Preferences, Privacy and Personalization in the News

YouTube Introduces Shopping Ads

YouTube's new ad unit, called Shopping ads, will allow advertisers to sell their products through the site's videos. Consumers can purchase directly from a video that features the item-and product videos (like reviews and tutorials) have seen 40 percent viewership growth this year. Click here to read more.

How Campbell's Is Offering Recipes via Amazon's Voice-Control System

Amazon's Echo, an in-home speaker with voice-control technology, offers branded content to users from companies like Campbell's. The speaker's voice app, Alexa, can either email or read out recipes when prompted by hungry users. Click here to read more.

China welcomes Apple's iPhones. Its News app? Not so much.

As Apple's sales grow in China, its had to navigate the country's policies on censoring controversial content, meaning that services like Apple News or Apple Music would be affected. Within China, the only users able to access News are visitors from outside the country, but even then, the app will not refresh. Click here to read more.

Moments, the best of Twitter in an instant

Social media users can catch up on the world around them, thanks to Twitter's new Moments feature. Tweets, images, videos, Vines and GIFs are sorted by timely subject, whether a conversation, meme, commentary or historic report. Users can view a moment, or follow it if it's ongoing, personalizing the media experience. Click here to read more.

E*Trade, Dow Jones Issue Breach Alerts

Pointing to a massive financial services breach in 2013, E*Trade and Dow Jones are issuing alerts to thousands of customers that their data may have been accessed in the hack. While at the time, the companies believed sensitive data like account numbers, passwords, IDs or Social Security numbers weren't accessed, they are now finding that some information was leaked. Click here to read more.



Eric Tejeda is the Director of Product Marketing for PossibleNOW and CompliancePoint. Eric supports the organization’s growth objectives by productizing and launching innovative new products and services that fill critical needs in the marketplace. 

With 25 years of experience, Eric firmly believes that permission-based marketing and preference management is a mega trend and the path to success for marketers today. 

Follow me on Twitter: @EricTejeda | Connect on LinkedIn: Eric Tejeda

L'Oréal USA's CMO Answers 4 Questions For Marketing Innovators

Marie Gulin-Merle has more than 15 years of experience in managing communications and digital strategies for fast-moving consumer goods and beauty luxury brands.


Before she was appointed CMO of L'Oréal USA nearly a year-and-a-half ago, Gulin-Merle served as global head of integrated marketing communications for L'Oréal Paris.

Gulin-Merle is credited with successfully reinventing integrated communications for L'Oréal Paris. Through her strategic leadership in the digital space, she also overhauled the content strategy for the brand's product innovations and modernized major events, such as L'Oréal Paris' involvement in the Cannes Film Festival.

Gulin-Merle recently participated in our "4 Questions for Marketing Innovators" series.

  1. What is one marketing topic that is most important to you as an innovator?
    The shift to data-driven marketing in the consumer packaged goods world is changing the way we do business. [Tweet this] At L'Oreal USA, we're leveraging this to cultivate more intimate relationships with our customers, who expect more value, more services, more engagements, and more conversations with our beauty brands.
  2. Why is this so important?
    Data-driven marketing unlocks immense possibilities of personalized brand experiences and puts the consumer at the center of each and every marketing decision. It has the power to change the way we develop products, campaigns, and our go-to-market strategy.

    The development of mobile is crucial for customization; the content has to be even sharper and continuously adapted and adjusted. One survey found that nearly two-thirds (62%) of Millennials feel that online content drives their brand loyalty. We're constantly using consumer insights to connect with them in innovative ways on mobile to build brand loyalty and trust so they feel satisfied with their shopping decisions.

    Our Makeup Genius app is a great example of how to connect with consumers through innovation. The app transforms the front-facing camera of your phone into a virtual mirror where users can try on products virtually. The app uses advanced facial-mapping technology that has previously only been used in Hollywood and in the gaming industry to overlay products, like lipstick and eyeliner, onto the user's face.
  3. How will the customer experience be improved by this?
    This new area creates value for consumers through more effective engagement. Consumers' digital expectations toward our brands have changed with the influx of data-driven marketing, and we're responding by using consumer data to help personalize our message, optimize investments, and engage with our customers at each and every step of their shopping journey.

    We want our consumers to continuously engage with products and be given an easy, seamless way to merge online and offline experiences. Customers expect L'Oreal USA brands to understand their needs. We're providing more customized, dynamic content to do just that.
  4. How will this improve the effectiveness of marketing?
    Technology-driven marketing means that any contact with our consumer will provide data, and that data will make the brand experience richer and tailored to each individual customer. This also translates to efficiencies to better measure our media return on investments, as well as better consumer engagement and loyalty.


    Bonus: Favorite activity outside of work?
    I'm a voracious reader. I love books about political history, revolutions, and French novels of the 19th century. Can't pass up a good autobiography either!




About the Author:
Ernan Roman Direct Marketing's Customer Experience strategies achieve consistent double-digit increases in response and revenue for their clients, which include IBM, MassMutual, QVC, Microsoft, and Symantec Corp.

As a leader in providing Voice of Customer research-based guidance, ERDM has conducted over 10,000 hours of interviews with their clients' customers and prospects, to gain an in-depth understanding of their expectations for high-value relationships.

The results achieved by ERDM's VoC-based strategies earned Ernan Roman induction into the Marketing Hall of Fame.

Visit his blog at: http://ernanroman.blogspot.com/

Preparing for Fall’s Windfall

Feel that chill in the air? That’s the signal of big things on the horizon and I don't just mean the pumpkin spice hype. For marketers, it's the start of the holiday shopping season. Thirty-two million shoppers are already be on the prowl for gifts, yet two percent of all American shoppers say they already finished their lists, according to a recent survey.

Aside from the earlybirds, the remaining ninety-eight percent of shoppers will be hitting the stores soon - all the way up to Christmas Day, for some latecomers. Since the majority of shopping takes place in the month of December, right now marks the point at which you should be double-checking that your customer-facing systems are presenting a cohesive message to consumers. Avoiding unnecessary frustrations across touchpoints ensures they have a unified experience across platforms. Over time, your trustworthiness and familiarity proves that consumers can return to your brand for many of their holiday needs.

But even more important than the immediate to-do is following up on any advances you've put into place to capture consumer preferences. Preference management, the active collection, maintenance and distribution of unique consumer characteristics, such as product interest, communication channel preference and frequency of communication, is the best way to encourage customers to engage with you on their terms. By acting on data provided by customers themselves throughout the year, you're able to shape and build relationships over time. Which means that come holiday shopping season, even that two percent of earlybirds will have made their purchases thanks to guidance and communications from you that reflect their stated needs.

In the same survey, 60 percent of shoppers said their main method of holiday shopping would be in retail stores. Thirty percent said that they would be mainly shopping online using computers or mobile devices. Altogether that contingent – 90 percent of shoppers - represents a massive opportunity to coordinate across touchpoints for preferences. Then, using preference management, you're able to parse out how customers want to be alerted about specials that are relevant to their shopping lists, whether they want to order online and pick up in your store, or if they’d like recommendations based on previous purchases. And that’s just the beginning. By offering personalization, time-saving opportunities or anticipatory answers to questions, you can be the big win in a hectic season that ends all too quickly.

Ninety-eight percent of customers are waiting for you. Have you spent the year earning your spot on their must-shop list?





About the Author: 
Eric V. Holtzclaw is  Chief Strategist  of PossibleNOW. He's a researcher, writer, serial entrepreneur and challenger-of-conventional wisdom. His book with Wiley Publishing on consumer behavior - Laddering: Unlocking the Potential of Consumer Behavior - hit bookstores last summer. Eric helps strategically guide companies with the implementation of enterprise-wide preference management solutions.



Follow me on Twitter: @eholtzclaw | Connect on LinkedIn: Eric Holtzclaw

Implementation of Preference Management: Centralizing Data

Preference Management Video Series

After unrolling preference management at multiple touchpoints, you will be collecting consumer information at a variety of places that can speak to customers' preferences at different interaction levels. Gathering this information allows you to begin to map the scope of the customer journey. But to best assess this data, you should be centralizing it. Creating a repository not subject to silos means that information can be accessed across the enterprise and ensures that you can create a single view of the customer - streamlining their experience and eliminating contradictions and frustrations.

In this video, Eric Holtzclaw discusses the benefits of centralized data, which can also enhance compliance efforts by maintaining a complete record and facilitating quick responses to inquiries and complaints. Eric also shares one of our client stories that illustrates the way that a lack of precaution can complicate customer data: A leading satellite radio service discovered that customer preferences were being captured and stored in disconnected systems that ranged from their website and contact center to spreadsheets and marketing lists. Fortunately the company was able to undertake an intensive assessment to determine what data was actionable while we were able to step in and act as their central repository. While a lack of data management created a complicated problem, the power of preference management gave us the solutions to set forth on a clear and compliant path.





In the following weeks, we'll continue to roll out videos to guide you through the implementation of preference management. If you haven't yet explored our Resource Center, you can download the Implementation of Preference Management whitepaper here.




Eric Tejeda is the Director of Product Marketing for PossibleNOW and CompliancePoint. Eric supports the organization’s growth objectives by productizing and launching innovative new products and services that fill critical needs in the marketplace. 

With 25 years of experience, Eric firmly believes that permission-based marketing and preference management is a mega trend and the path to success for marketers today. 

Follow me on Twitter: @EricTejeda | Connect on LinkedIn: Eric Tejeda

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