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Latest Customer Experience News & Articles

2014 Action Item: Did We Get Back to Basics with Web CMS?

Only two days into 2014, the message was clear for Irina Guseva when it comes to Web Content Management Systems. Be simple. Get back to the basics, the now group product marketing manager at San Jose, Calif.-based Adobe Systems told us then.

More than a year later, did her message resonate? We caught up with her to find out in our continuing "2014 Action Item" series. Earlier this month, we also checked in on 2014 action items for B2B marketers becoming more agile and blogging smarter.

So how did Web CMS users do?

Microsoft's Tangled E-Commerce Future #nrf15

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Sitecore's announcement on Tuesday of its new e-commerce offering, Sitecore Commerce 8 powered by Microsoft Dynamics, at the NRF Big Show made waves in the e-commerce world for a number of reasons. The launch integrates the Sitecore Experience Platform, its highly regarded content management system, with Microsoft Dynamics to more effectively merge content management with commerce systems.

A little background is in order: Sitecore took over Microsoft’s Commerce Server in Q4 of 2013. Now called Sitecore Commerce, the initial integration with the Sitecore Experience Platform was announced in fall of 2014. Let's try to shed some light on what this release signifies for the future direction of both companies.

Customer Communities: Strategy or Tactic?

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It used to be that transactions were the trigger for relationships.

You walked into a local store to purchase something, and if the transaction was pleasant, you were more likely to return. Organizations tend to view relationships primarily through the lens of transactions: how many times has someone purchased a product, used support, emailed, etc. In this world, the transaction was the beginning of the relationship and opened up access to connect with individual employees and other customers.

Social media changes that. Now the relationship triggers the transaction.

Salesforce Offers a Peek at the State of Marketing

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It's a big world of marketing technology, as we reported earlier this week.

It's an even bigger world of people that marketers are trying to connect with through those technologies. The more marketers know about those people and where they get information, the better.

"Everybody is dealing with the rapid evolution of marketing," said Jeff Rohrs, vice president of marketing insights at Salesforce, which this week released the Salesforce Marketing Cloud 2015 State of Marketing Report, its annual flagship research report based on data from more than 5,000 global marketers. "… The good news is we've never had more ways to connect with consumers. The bad news is we've never had more ways to connect with consumers."

Insite Software Taps New CEO to Lead B2B E-Commerce Efforts

B2B e-commerce provider Insite Software has tapped a tech software industry veteran as its new CEO and moved its former CEO to another executive position.

Insite named Tony Abena, 25-year industry veteran and former chief operating officer of Deloitte Investments, an internal start-up division within Deloitte LLP, its new chief executive. Former Insite Software CEO Steve Shaffer remains with the company and will serve as president and chief financial officer.

Abena is hardly unfamiliar to the Minneapolis, Minn.-based provider. He was a member of its board of directors since last June. According to his LinkedIn profile, he has been CEO at Insite since last October, but today's announcement appears to the formal public news.

The Year Emotional Intelligence Meets Customer Experience

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Despite the fact that we are in an age where everything seems to be computerized and automated, this is the year that businesses will start to feel more human. Customers will feel more and more like businesses are listening to their individual wants and needs.

 

Microsoft Ends Windows 7 Support: Are You Scared?

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If you're a PC user and you woke up this morning with an undefined fear, maybe you're subconsciously recalling that today is the day Microsoft stops offering free support for Windows 7.

It’s not quite the same as the panic attacks many people experienced last April when Microsoft announced the XP show was finally over. But today is still likely to create some discomfort for Windows 7 users who refuse to move forward. In fact, this is the beginning of the end.

6 Sites Are the Fastest, Most Secure: Is Yours One of Them?

Six websites earned recognition as the fastest and most secure over the recent holiday season, based on anonymous consumer data aggregated across more than 26 million domains worldwide.

Ghostery, a global marketing technology company that provides online transparency and control to consumers and businesses, claims the sites ranked the highest on its newly developed Ghostscore Website Optimization Index. The index is based on a data-driven engine that ranks website performance and security across key industries worldwide.

Ghostery CEO and founder Scott Meyer boasted that the index will help establish a new global standard for website efficiency and profitability. "A lot of companies that use our marketing cloud management service have been asking us how they are doing, relative to other companies. We decided to create a tool to help answer the question," Meyer told CMSWire.

Turn Sales into Customer Ambassadors: Reward Renewals

A talent manager friend of mine puts it bluntly: “people do what they’re paid to do.” More specifically, she means people do what they’re incented to do — especially through bonuses, commissions and other performance-based compensation. It’s attaining payment for achievement that motivates people, especially when that payment is also accompanied by recognition, promotions and status among one’s peers. Base salary is important – but it’s not all about the base.

Omnichannel Retail Gains Momentum at #nrf15

For the first time ever, the National Retail Federation’s (NRF) Big Show kicked off on a Sunday. The idea being that an extra day would give the estimated 35,000 plus attendees more time to walk the EXPO Hall floor and engage with the wide variety of vendors in attendance at the Javits Center in New York. Sunday’s keynote, Game Changer: Loyalty and Performance Lessons from Passionate Sports Fandom, was clearly designed to get people out as representatives of three of four of the major professional sports leagues (NBA, NFL and NHL) were speaking, but the major keynote was held for Monday after NRF CEO and president Matthew Shay’s opening remarks. Keynote speaker Ben Bernanke, Chairman of the Federal Reserve from 2006 - 2014, focused his comments on “macro-economic trends for US, global and emerging economies as well as retail’s impact on the US GDP.”

Teradata Acquires Mobile Marketing Automation Platform

Teradata scooped up an Israeli mobile marketing automation provider in an acquisition officials said gives Teradata's marketing cloud applications direct, two-way contact with the mobile devices.

Teradata's acquisition of Appoxee closed last month but was announced publicly today. Appoxee's brand will be retired, and its solutions integrated into the Teradata Integrated Marketing Cloud beginning immediately. It will also be integrated with the Teradata Digital Marketing Center.

"Appoxee adds several additional mobile capabilities to Teradata’s portfolio," Michael Lummus, director of strategy for digital markets, told CMSWire. "These include mobile push notifications, in-app messaging, data collection, analytics and optimization. This acquisition gives Teradata’s applications direct, two-way contact with the mobile devices that connect billions of global consumers with brands."

Digital Start-Up Top Dog: Symphony Commerce #nrf15

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The retail industry has a top dog among digital commerce start-ups.

Symphony Commerce won the first annual Digital Commerce Startup Competition, the National Retail Federation announced today at its 104th Annual Convention and EXPO. Better known as the NRF BIG Show, the four-day conference wraps up tomorrow at the Jacob K. Javits Center.

Symphony, run by CEO and co-founder Harish Abbott, received the title at the New York City-based exposition — in the same city where retail was celebrated by this same organization for the first time more than 100 years ago.

10 Things Online Retailers Must Do in 2015

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The 2014 holiday shopping season brought online commerce to new heights, with double-digit growth in US online sales on both on desktops and mobile devices.  Remember that shopping behavior tends to encompass more than one channel — consumers usually hop between brand touch points before they push the buy button. Consider a shopper who adds a product to her shopping cart while browsing on her desktop, then abandons the purchase only to pick up her mobile phone. Retailers must offer a seamless and consistent shopping experience across desktops and mobile devices in order to set their brand apart.

Sitecore, Microsoft Partner to Bridge Physical-Digital Divide #nrf15

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Omnichannel is the new black. That’s the buzz we’re hearing from the National Retail Federation’s (NRF) BIG Show in the BIG Apple this week.

But the chatter is not just about omnichannel. It’s also about the wins that integrating brick and mortar and digital can create, like guiding a customer to the store that has — in stock — the exact product (even the right size) he has been checking out online. In other words, it’s getting the right products and the right offers to the right people before they abandon their virtual and/or physical shopping carts, change their minds or look for something else to buy someplace else.

To do this you need to know what a customer is doing on each channel. And not just that: You also need to know what’s happening with your goods and services. This kind of data is best gleaned from customer relationship management (CRM) and enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems. Without the latter, you may not be able to deliver what the customer wants to buy and is willing to pay for. And when that happens, you not only miss a sale, but risk losing a customer as well.

It’s to avoid these kinds of problems and to create experiences that engage customers that Sitecore introduced Sitecore Commerce 8 powered by Microsoft Dynamics yesterday. The new solution bridges the gap between in-store and digital experiences.

Adobe Campaign Enhances Marketing Integration

The integration trail for Adobe Campaign continued this week as the San Jose, Calif-based software giant announced new capabilities for the technology it acquired a year and a half ago.

Today's announcements aren't bringing home entirely new concepts, but officials say they make things easier for digital marketers catering to retail prospects.

"We had the analytics integration in October, and this is the second step in a string of integrations we're working on," said Kerry Reilly, director of product marketing for Adobe Campaign, one of the company's six pillars in the Adobe Marketing Cloud. "This time we've got a good handful of integration pipes we're building between our solution that allow easy transformation of data and communication."

Facebook's Grasp on Social Login is Slipping

The company that rules the social login has a leg up to dominate e-commerce, online advertising and a slew of other profit-oriented activities thanks to the data this activity can yield.

It's no small matter, then, that Facebook — which has long been the top platform for social sign-ins — is now showing signs of losing some of its market share.

So says a new survey by Janrain, which found that Facebook's overall market share of logins decreased 3 percent in the fourth quarter of 2014 after six months of consecutive growth. Meanwhile, Google's share of logins grew 6 percent, from 34 percent in the third quarter to 40 percent in the fourth.

It is a significant increase, Janrain claims — it is, in fact, the largest quarter-over-quarter increase in logins across all sites for any of the top identity providers in over two years.

The State of B2B Customer-Alignment Maturity

“If you don't know where you're going, you'll end up someplace else.” — Yogi Berra

This pretty much sums up the customer-alignment journey of most companies. Companies know their survival depends on aligning strategy, culture, partners and processes to their customers’ lifecycle expectations, but the end state is often fuzzy. And fuzzy mean the path to get there is equally unclear.

Think Your Customer Experience Is Perfect? Test Again

2015-12-January-Test.jpgBusinesses, and the people who power them, easily fall into routines. Once we find a process or program that works, we stick with it. Routines bring predictability and stability, but if they go unexamined or fail to incorporate feedback, they can get in the way of providing exceptional customer experiences.

Outdated routines fail to address the changing business landscape, and assume that what was true in the past remains true today. Customer experiences are rarely perfect. However, by injecting testing into our culture and processes, we get closer to understanding what today’s perfect customer experience may be.

Week in Review: DAM in 2015 + Information Governance

Looking Through DAM Lens
Two views: DAM's goals in 2015 and beyond.

Where the Mobile March Leads
Time to catch up — and mobile comes first.

Simply Irresistible?
Microsoft wants to be the digital go-to.

Making Social More Social
Social needs a little face time.

Call for Strategic Governance
Information management needs governance.

IT — College Degree Required?
What are the educational prerequisites for tech? 

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Contact Center Fraud: 3 Things You Need to Know

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While the media has focused its attention on the seemingly never-ending data breaches that occurred over the past year, another type of fraud is on the rise again, threatening customer loyalty and wallet share of financial institutions and businesses in similar high-risk industries.

According to an infographic by NICE Systems, 90 percent of fraud cases involve at least one interaction in the customer contact center. In addition, after becoming a victim to fraud, 40 percent of customers close their accounts with their financial institution, and an additional 40 percent reduce their wallet share.