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Latest Customer Experience News & Articles

Zendesk Masters Customer Service

After completing a successful IPO this spring, Zendesk, provider of a cloud-based customer service platform, recently added to the upside momentum, reporting second quarter revenue growth of 80 percent.

In the past quarter, the seven-year-old company added more than 3,000 new accounts and now has an installed base of 45,740 customers, up 40 percent year-over-year. Among Zendesk’s customers: Uber, OpenTable, Airbnb, Groupon, Adobe Systems, Box, Dropbox, L’Oreal, Nine West Group, Red Bull, Roku and AOL.

With so many consumers these days turning to Facebook, Twitter and Yelp to talk about their customer service experiences, it’s more critical than ever for businesses to get it right. Poor customer service is now much more of a social event, and potentially more harmful to an organization’s reputation.

How to Energize Your E-Commerce Site

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Does your e-commerce site still look like an electronic version of a mail-order catalog? If so, it’s time to take a big leap forward. It's 2014, after all.

“Consumers are looking for more than just a product online. They’re looking for something to support their lifestyle,” said Glenn Conradt, vice president of Global Product Marketing at CoreMedia, a web content management software provider. "It's no longer enough just to handle the transactional elements of the e-commerce relationship. It has to go beyond that and be experiential.”

This means adding features to those flat, featureless sites to give them new energy and life. Think videos, for instance, showing consumers how a product actually works, as well as providing creative ideas and tips.

SWAM: When LinkedIn Locks Down Social Networking

2014-24-September-Smily-Lockdown.jpgIf you post updates to LinkedIn groups, think twice before you click the "Share" button. Say the wrong thing and you might get sent to the LinkedIn penalty box for an extended period of time. According to LinkedIn policy, if a group moderator feels for any reason that your post is irrelevant or is spam, he can temporarily blacklist you from posting to that group and to all your other LinkedIn groups as well.

LinkedIn may still be the reigning champion of professional social networking, but it won’t be for long if it continues to alienate its most active participants.

Base CRM Wants to Take on Industry Heavy Hitters

2014-24-September-Boxing-Gloves.jpgA small CRM software provider feels it has the alternative to big players Salesforce, Microsoft Dynamics and SAP.

Palo Alto-based Base CRM released a new set of features officials say will give sales leaders the tools to "make an immediate impact on the productivity of their teams" by moving the CRM dynamic from "static to "real time." It helps its 5,000 or so customers fill a gap, officials say, that exists with legacy cloud SFA and CRM systems like Salesforce and Microsoft Dynamics.

"The CRM market is crowded with legacy solutions like Salesforce, MS Dynamics and SAP," Uzi Shmilovici, CEO of Base, told CMSWire. "These offerings mainly consist of a large database that is manually populated through a series of forms. The legacy solutions are not easy to use, they suffer when it comes to mobility and they do not return benefits to the sales reps who are forced to use the CRMs."

Why Apple Pay Will Boost Mobile Payments

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Apple did more than announce its new, bigger iPhone 6 and super sized iPhone 6 Plus and much-anticipated Apple Watch earlier this month.

It also showcased its new mobile payment system, Apple Pay. Though payment via mobile devices using near-field communication (NFC) is not a new concept, Apple went beyond the norm.

Rather than just add an NFC radio to its new phones and watch and call it a day, it engineered a complete payment system and network. It's now ready for launch with its other new products, which is very likely why Apple Pay will succeed where other NFC payment systems have failed.

Salesforce ExactTarget Marketing Cloud Gets Personal with Apps

2014-23-September-Marc-Benioff.jpgSalesforce officials are in Indianapolis this week at its Connections 2014 conference promoting the ExactTarget Marketing Cloud. 

The latest addition — Journey Builder for Apps — helps users deliver personalized customer journeys directly from mobile apps, they said. Today they announced it also allows customers to use the Salesforce CRM platform to connect the customer journey across sales, service, marketing and communities. 

It's about the ability to "move me along that journey with content that's relevant to me," as Salesforce Chief Marketing Officer Lynn Vojvodich said this morning at the 8,000-person Indianapolis show.

Discussion Point: Will We Still Use Twitter in 10 Years?

discussion-point-1.jpgTechnology tastes change quickly. Things can be hot today, gone tomorrow.

Anybody remember Pointcast? Once the software app of the moment, it was quickly tossed into the rubbish bin of technology history.

That brings us to Twitter, one of the apps du jour. It's amazing how swiftly it has penetrated into the public consciousness. We now see the tweets of public figures scrolling across TV screens during International sporting events.

Founded in 2006,  Twitter has gone public and amassed a $31 billion market cap in less than 10 years.

But will we still tweet 10 years from now? After all, it's just a text message. There's not really any rocket science here. And it's been proven that new social apps such as Instagram and WhatsApp can swoop in and grab the fickle-fancy of teens in a heartbeat.

A decade is an eon in tech terms. When you think of Moore's Law, whereby computer speed and capacity doubles every two years, it makes 10-year old technology look lame.

No app is safe in the zeitgeist of mobile culture.

Google Plus Gasps for Breath, Does Anyone Care?

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There's no mourning in cyberspace, no overt sentimental ramblings on social media — despite yet another move by Google to put its struggling social network out of its misery.

This time, Google is dropping the requirement for all new users to create a Plus account when signing up for a Google network.

Typically when Google chops a product, it triggers a storm of protests. With Plus, though, the blogosphere has been largely silent — a sure reflection of how few people care whether the network fades away.

Kana Blends Analytics Into Its Customer Engagement Suite #Connect2014

Thumbnail image for 2014-10-July-SS-Robert Hoetink.jpgSince Verint bought KANA earlier this year for $514 million, the question has been how the business analytics company would blend KANA's customer experience services into its suite of employee services.

The answer, or at least a big part of it, came today in San Francisco as the new "KANA, a Verint company" introduced a big data solution called Engagement Analytics at the Connect2014 conference.

The new product ties the actions of employees together with the experience of customers across the web, mobile, contact center and other channels in near real time.

Shopzilla Rebrands as Connexity

You probably saw this coming. In June, Shopzilla, the shopping search engine, branded three newly-combined business units as Connexity — the name of the programmatic media buying startup it acquired in February.

Today, the Las Angles-based marketing technology provider took the next logical step and officially rebranded as Connexity.

Company officials said the new name will help highlight the shift of the company from comparison shopping to technology driven marketing solutions that "enable retailers and brands to understand their consumers better, acquire new customers at a lower cost and increase sales based on retail signals."

Shopzilla had been best known for its comparison shopping websites, such as Shopzilla and Bizrate. But CEO Bill Glass said today that the comparison shopping websites "were just the tip of the iceberg."

In a statement, Glass noted, "We have launched a comprehensive set of solutions so marketers can touch consumers at every stage of the path to purchase from awareness, consideration, transaction, right to loyalty. These businesses are now the majority of our revenue and growing at an accelerating rate."

Week in Review: Does Technology Sap Productivity? + SharePoint's Cloudy Days

iPhone 6 Opps for Marketers
Apple's iPhone 6 is officially on the streets. Here's why digital marketers should drive by.

Content Marketing Chief's Message
Those who don't have a plan — and revisit it — won't succeed in content marketing.

Can Yammer Save SharePoint?
Microsoft's social integration future in SharePoint is all about Yammer.

When Technology Hurts Us
Is technology actually sapping our workforce productivity?

Box the ECM Killer?
Box may be writing Enterprise Content Management's obituary

Cloudy Times for SharePoint
Movement to the SharePoint cloud was all the buzz at the SPTechCon — and so were SharePoint risks.

Turbo Charge Your Marketing Efforts with Big Data
How leading marketers are using Big Data to boost conversions & drive profitability.
Download the Guide

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Want to Understand Your Customers? Talk to Seth Godin

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Seth Godin writes the most popular marketing blog in the world — and he gets customer experience.

As he once noted,  "The complaining customer doesn't want a refund. He wants a connection, an apology and some understanding. He wants to know why you made him feel stupid or ripped off or disrespected, and why it's not going to happen again." 

And he knows that an apology means more than a mumbled "sorry." It has to include both compassion and contrition, he wrote recently:

We're sorry that your flight was cancelled. This must have truly messed up your day, sir." That's a statement of compassion. "Cancelling a flight that a valued customer trusted us to fly is not the way we like to do business. We messed up." That's what contrition sounds like. We were wrong and we learned from it. The disappointing thing is that most people and organizations that take the time to apologize intentionally express neither compassion nor contrition."

Godin is the founder of Squidoo.com, a fast-growing recommendation website, and the author of 17 bestselling books. He is responsible for many words in the marketer's vocabulary, including permission marketing, ideaviruses, purple cows, the dip and sneezers.

Combine what has been called his "irrepressible speaking style" with his "no-holds-barred blog" and you can understand how he has developed a worldwide following. 

News Bites: Platforms and Clouds, Phones and Ohms

The latest in training, security, integrating, golfing and expanding from the home of the Apple Blossom Festival, Deadwood City and Silicon Wadi, Gator Country and Cantabrigia, the Land of Poets and Philosophers and Fog City.

How to Tune Up Your Tweets #INBOUND14

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Fair to say Twitter has a pretty good audience with its 271 million active monthly users who collectively send out a billion tweets every two days.

As you might suspect, research shows that tapping into Twitter really helps to drive your business.

According to Twitter statistics
• 73 percent of users feel better about an SMB after following its account and reading its Tweets
• 60 percent of users who follow SMBs have purchased something because of Twitter

But not all tweets are created equal. 

Use Human Data to Provide True B2B Personalization

2014-18-September-Crowds.jpgAn enormous shift is occurring in how B2B customers think about engagement and relationships. Customers expect marketers to achieve relevance by providing personalized communications based on their individual preferences, rather than continuing with irrelevant “spray and pray” marketing blasts. It’s this new way of thinking that’s unlocking the true potential of human data.

Alibaba: The Web IPO Heard Round the World

2014-18-September-Monopoly-Money.jpgThe global Internet and finance community is transfixed by the Initial Public Offering (IPO) of Alibaba Group Holdings, the  Chinese e-commerce giant that is expected to go public on Friday at a market capitalization in excess of $160 billion. This is likely to be the largest IPO of all time, raising up to $25 billion in capital for the company and giving a market capitalization larger than eBay (market cap, $64B) and possibly Amazon.com ($150B).

Introducing the Chief Listening Officer

2014-18-September-Listen.jpgThe universal interest in improving the “customer experience” both heartens and amuses me. Heartens because it's a good thing: who doesn't want a simpler, easier and more relevant experience in the multichannel world? Amuses because the term — like many Holy Grail concepts — is strong on hope and weak on follow through. For all of the interest in customer experience and all of the touted methods, systems and platforms, can you honestly tell me that your customer experience is better today than it was a year ago? Or two years ago?

Three Tips For a Bang-Up Blog

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Looking to get the most bang for your blog?

Follow the three-step playbook created by Anum Hussain, a growth marketer for HubSpot's inbound sales division, created after staring down the daunting challenge of creating a new blog HubSpot’s sales acceleration product, Sidekick. 

It's not enough just to have a blog, she said, you've got to create the right one.

How to Ensure Success in Your Customer's Journey

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You wouldn't climb the highest mountain without a guide or take up parachuting without an instructor. So why expect your customers to succeed without some guidance?

Today, it's important to help your Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) customers to succeed by analyzing the way they use your product and step in when they need help. This approach, known as customer success, has grown rapidly over the past couple of years. It's a byproduct of the subscription economy that has turned the traditional sales model on its head.

The subject was explored in depth yesterday as customer success executives from Totango and Kapost shared their ideas in a CMSWire.com Webinar sponsored by Totango.

Mobile Devices are the Gateway to the Internet of Things

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The Internet of Things (IoT) is all about devices: how we interact with them and the data they produce. 

One key piece of the IoT that is often overlooked is our mobile device. On the day Apple releases its iOS 8, there's no better time to point out that mobile devices are really our gateway to the IoT.  

As we move around from location to location our mobile device, which is packed with sensors and numerous wireless radios, helps us seamlessly communicate with various other devices. Some of these devices might be in our homes, some our offices, some in our cars or the stores we shop in.  Still others, we wear on our bodies.