Thursday, 28 April 2011

An A to Z of eCRM - V

V is for Value

Where Value is a two-way street.

It’s not just about what your consumers can do for you, but more importantly what you can do for them.

It’s all about Value Exchange. You need to show the consumers what’s in it for them. Why should I give you my email address? Why should I sign up to your Facebook page? Why should I sign up for your rewards scheme? Without a clear benefit (which admittedly might at some stage only be because they want to be associated with a cool brand), there is no reason for a consumer to give you Permission to engage with them.

Of course different customers provide you with differing levels of value, but let’s not just judge value in terms of revenue. Value can also be based on their ability to influence others, or by how many touch-points they engage with you.

And conversely, all customers are equal, but it’s just that some are more equal than others.

An A to Z of eCRM - U

U is for Ubiquity

Good eCRM is everywhere and nowhere.

It’s not just about marketing messages but service messages that help me build confidence in buying online or offline from you.It’s helping me connect with other similar consumers to share reviews and recommendations.
It’s valued, relevant, engaging, and useful. Good for the customer and the organisation.

Bad eCRM is in your face.

It’s ignoring my privacy and preferences to send me unwanted communications.
It’s intrusive, pushy, irrelevant, exploitative, salesy

Do the good stuff, not the bad stuff

Wednesday, 27 April 2011

An A to Z of eCRM - T

T is for Targeting and Segmentation

Segmentation + Targeting = Relevance

And remember that Targeting and Segmentation is multi-dimensional. From a consumer’s perspective it’s all 
about understanding

Who I am
What I am
Where I am
When I am

Ultimately, this keeps the consumer happy and makes your own marketing more efficient.

(Chart taken from somewhere..but I cant remember where..sorry)

Thursday, 21 April 2011

An A to Z of eCRM - S

S is for Social

Social is everywhere but it is not the same thing to everyone.

Social has become big at double speed because it gives people a way of doing what comes naturally to them, expressing themselves, whether that be the sharing of stories, complaining, giving advice or just generally hanging out for no real reason.

But you can’t crowbar Social into your Marketing Programmes. It’s either a natural fit or it isn’t.

It doesn’t have to involve a ‘conversation’ between you and the consumer, but it could be a way of you giving the consumers an opportunity to talk with each other, or just allow people to win stuff!!

So for Social don’t just see Facebook and Twitter. Also see blogs, communities, forums, ratings and reviews and so on.

Wednesday, 20 April 2011

An A to Z of eCRM - R

R is for ROI 

At the end of the day engagement and conversation are important, but essentially it does boil down to it all being about the conversion so measurement and evaluation are key.

Return on Investment is a key cornerstone of direct, digital and data.

But what should we measure? Many marketers stop after the first few steps. Opens, clicks, shares, reviews, recommendations are key metrics but we must not stop there. But what we need to understand is how these initial consumer indicators ultimately translate  into Return

Friday, 15 April 2011

An A to Z of eCRM - Q

Q is for Quiet...I want to be alone

As with any conversation, there are periods when silence happens. 

As a consumer, do I really want a message from you every day trying to sell me another laptop when I only bought one last month? How often do you think I buy expensive pieces of IT as a consumer?

We can’t expect the consumer to want to constantly engage with us so we need to ensure that our eCRM takes into account the customer journey specific to the product and services we provide.

And give consumers the option to temporarily opt out of you comms. It’s a brave thing to do. I know of one travel company that allowed customers to opt out from emails for the period of the year when they never considered booking holidays. As a result they had a drop in unsubscribes of close to 40%.

How comfortable are you in your relationship with your customers to consider this?

Wednesday, 13 April 2011

An A to Z of eCRM - P

P is for Practice

Because there is no such thing as Best Practice.

Every Brand, Business Model, Audience combination is unique and as a result you have to create your own Best Practice.

And you can only do that by creating and sticking to a good Test, Learn and Refine programme, remembering that the world of audience engagement is ever changing so models you created six months may no longer hold true.

Also remember that all models are flawed; it’s just that some are more useful than others. Gravity is a law, expected open rate is not

As Lee Trevino the famous golfer highlighted, the more you practice, the luckier you get.

Tuesday, 12 April 2011

An A to Z of eCRM - O

O is for Offline or Online?

Or Both?

Only 10% of brand conversations take place online.

Google stated recently that 97% of commerce still happens off line

The shopping malls of Europe are not devoid of people on a Saturday afternoon because they are sitting at home being online.

A large percentage of our digital activity drives people into traditional bricks and mortar - even if the final sale doesn't place there.

We need to remember that in most cases, it is not a case of one or the other but both.

 Our audience will expect us to realise this and expect us to be consistent

Sunday, 10 April 2011

An A to Z of eCRM - N

N is for 1984

We need to be as relevant as possible but not in such a way that scares consumers or feels like we are intruding. There is a fine line between being there for our audience and acting like big brother.
Personalisation is a key plank of any organisation’s CRM strategy – but to me CRM stands more for Contextual Relevance Marketing than anything else. 

This new CRM only works when the context and relevance with which you are engaging with me has my Permission. But it also stops working if you abuse my Privacy by ignoring the Permission I have given you. That permission is about engaging me on particular topics, at certain times using my preferred media.

My old Greek friend Aristotle talks about Ethos in the art of persuasion– and that before you can convince an audience, they have to accept you as being credible. And credibility has Trust as a cornerstone

As a consumer I want the recommendations and relevancy that personalisation brings, but don’t want you to abuse that trust. And if you do, as a connected consumer in today’s world using connected networks, your lack of ethos will be quickly shared

Thursday, 7 April 2011

An A to Z of eCRM - M

M is for Mobile

We should stop asking ourselves if this is the year of the mobile. It is the era of the mobile. The growth of mobile as an established media channel will continue. 

It has been described as the new form of mass media, but is actually a real opportunity for one-to-one engagement on a local level.

But let’s not assume that it’s just’s all connected devices, from the latest smartphone to the soft drinks vending machine that tells the distribution company that it needs restocking.

Mobile for the consumer really helps define the age of

Click and Do 

Click and Know

Click and Say

Click and Buy

Wednesday, 6 April 2011

An A to Z of eCRM - L

L is for Loyalty

I think I would be happier if it wasn’t called Loyalty .I am much happier with Rewards schemes.

In my opinion most ‘’Loyalty’’ Programs are actually cross-sell up-sell schemes based around often very clever data insights – and there’s nothing wrong with that. But some are just based on really really simple infrastructures...a credit card size piece of paper!

There are two elements to Loyalty – Behavioural and Attitudinal. Loyalty Programmes really focus on the former, although they may have an impact on the latter. And the use of data is the clever bit that marketers need to focus on to make these Behaviour Loyalty Programmes work.

And of course, part of the insight gained from the data is also an understanding of where and how the customer wants to hear from you. In today’s world of the savvy customer, brands need to engage on the customer’s terms, whether that is via email, social or face to face.

If you want real loyalty, which I think is built on Attitudinal Loyalty, then you have to win the hearts and minds of customers at every single (e)CRM touch-point and beyond.

An A to Z of eCRM - K

K is for Klout

OK, I cheated there, K is for Clout

By Clout, I mean the ability to influence – the ability to make people do things, think in a different way and the number of people that influence reaches.

Of course Brands have clout, individuals have clout, and communities have clout.

Part of successful eCRM is to understand where these spheres of influence exist and how they operate and to engage with them. But remember, engaging them is not the same as selling to them. By trying to control the conversation with 100% selling messages you will lose all credibility. 

And of course lets not forget that Consumers should have clout with you. Not only in terms of expecting great customer service, but also in terms of influencing your product development and the way you communicate with them.

But sometimes it is just about being there for your consumers.

Monday, 4 April 2011

An A to Z of eCRM - J

J is for Johnson...Lyndon B. Johnson, the American President to be exact.

LBJ used to say that “every handshake is worth 250 votes”.

Nothing deepens a sense of loyalty more than when one feels they have a one-on-one connection with someone. That’s why fans attend rock concerts or brave the winter months to watch their favourite football team – there’s a sense of atmosphere and involvement that can’t be gained any other way.

And whether its B2C or B2B, sometimes it needs to be more than just an email or a mention on Twitter. There's a time place for different media. You might research a car purchase on forums and on the brand website, but nothing can replace the test drive, or the moment the keys are handed over the day you take delivery.

Good eCRM carries on from the email through to the online experience, all the way to the evening when the delivery driver hands over the bags with your groceries.

Sunday, 3 April 2011

An A to Z of eCRM - I

I is for Integration

Integration of course means having a consistent message through each channel by actually deciding what eCRM is there to do for you. Does your eCRM fall into the PR, Marketing or Customer Services camps? Or all of them?

I’m a big fan of having a Big Idea that can be conveyed across different channels, as long as we remember that the channels have different strengths and weaknesses and that the customer might want different things from different channels depending on where they are in the Purchase Cycle. 

And remember that even in this 'On-line' world, the majority of commerce still takes place off line, so your eCRM needs to be consistent to what happens when the customer visits the bricks and mortar!

Friday, 1 April 2011

An A to Z of eCRM - H

H is for Harry - Harry Caul

Harry is the character played by Gene Hackman in the film The Conversation.

It’s all about trying to understand what the content of a conversation is. Harry uses every tool at his disposal to get snatches of information to piece together.
Seems similar to what we try to do as marketers, trying to make sense of all the data we collect to create that Insight Masterpiece on our customers.
A word of warning – you’ll never get a complete picture, and if you want to wait until you do before you take any action you’ll never make a move. Sometimes...good enough is all you need. 

( although in all fairness,Harry does do that, with dire consequences!