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Customer Experience Management (CXM) Articles

One-Size Fits All Selling Backfires with Small Businesses

2014-09-December-Too-Big.jpgThe sales process most B2B enterprise sales people follow is loosely based on a generic model of the customer decision journey for medium to large companies. The problem with that approach is this: Small businesses have their own purchase journeys and behaviors. To lump them together with larger businesses mean missed sales opportunities and increased churn.

While some small business purchase behavior is similar to their larger brethren, most B2B sales people don’t recognize they differentiations between how the “S” of SMBs purchase. That translates into frustration for the small to medium business owners, which means lost sales opportunities or a longer sales process with stops and starts for vendors.

Not a Rumor: Accel-KKR Invests in EPiServer

Say what you will, but sometimes the scuttlebutt that emerges through Twitter (and that we report on) happens to be the truth, or pretty close to it anyways. We can now confirm that Accel-KKR has made a “majority investment” in (and may very well own -- read on) EPiServer. This news comes to us direct from EPiServer, which says that it can’t provide further comment right now.

Hats-off to Martin Henricson, CEO of EPiServer, for letting his customers, partners, employees and anyone else who might be affected by the news know that there’s something significant going on.

Ektron: Good or Bad Software? Depends On Who You Ask

2014-08-December-Coin-Toss.jpgSale. Investment. No sale. No investment. Merger with EpiServer. No merger with EpiServer.

Whatever the heck's happening at Ektron, this is a technology company.

And the future of the Nashua, NH-based .NET Web CMS provider comes down to a simple question: Do people like its software?

The answer depends on who you ask. Some say its usability is poor. Others think the product's never been stronger. Some think its lifetime support model is its sweet spot. Others say that support's inconsistent.

"My take is that the product has never been stronger compared to older versions but that the competition in the CMS market is full of strong players that are rapidly expanding into the ‘content marketing’ world," said Chris Chodnicki, co-founder and executive director of strategic partnerships and alliances at R2integrated, a Baltimore-based Ektron partner. "If the funding means Ektron can integrate their product to meet the challenges we are seeing with clients and what other platforms are bringing -- and at a very accelerated pace -- then this will be welcomed news."

Content and Commerce: Where Do We Go From Here?

2014-08-December-Weather-Vane.jpgForrester said it best in the title of a report: "Content and Commerce: The Odd Couple or The Power Couple?" According to the report, companies need cohesive digital customer experiences, but marketing and e-commerce groups often operate in silos with differing objectives, leading to a poorly integrated digital presence that confuses the customer, is difficult to manage and leaves revenue on the table.

IDC's Look at the Future of Social Technologies

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It’s that time of year when everyone is looking back to see how they've done and looking forward to see how much more they can do. And according to Framingham, Mass.-based IDC (International Data Corporation), social technologies can be a major driver of organizational transformation in 2015.

Shep Hyken: A Guy Who Embraced Customers Before It Was Popular

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Anyone who knows anything about customer experience (CX) knows Shep Hyken.

Hyken is a go-to source for anything related to CX. He's also a professional speaker and bestselling author who works with companies and organizations who want to build lasting relationships with their customers and employees.

In addition to writing in hundreds of publications, he is the bestselling author of "Moments of Magic," "The Loyal Customer," "The Cult of the Customer," "The Amazement Revolution" and, most recently, "Amaze Every Customer Every Time." He is also the creator of The Customer Focus program, which helps clients develop a customer service culture and loyalty mindset.

Did we mention he's the Chief Amazement Officer of Shepard Presentations — a company he founded in 1983?

Organizational Ego is Eating Trust

I had reason to visit the International Monetary Fund website recently. Based on its content, the IMF is an organization overflowing with ego. Dominating the homepage was IMF chief Christine Lagarde with a very large picture of herself. In imperious language we are told that Lagarde “welcomes the pledge by the G-20 group of advanced and emerging economies to step up efforts to boost growth and create jobs.” 

IBM is Offering Watson Analytics - At No Charge

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IBM just announced a new use for Watson, its supercomputer: a freemium analytics service that's available to all business users. It provides business professionals a unified experience and natural language dialogue so they can make better use data to achieve business goals, IBM claims.

Since it announced a very limited beta in September, IBM claims 22,000 people have signed up for the service. That seems way below the minimum threshold needed to make this a viable business, which may explain why the company is now opening it up to everyone. The freemium service will automate the once time-consuming tasks of data preparation, predictive analysis and visual storytelling for business professionals.

Want to Retain Your Customers? Get Personal

Many marketers are stuck in the personalization slow lane. Personalization is no longer a luxury reserved for big players like Amazon but is an expectation. So marketers who want to keep up with the competition must employ a personalization strategy. The good part? It's easier than ever to get on board with personalization. A number of tools exist that will amass customer data for you and provide you with opportunities to tailor your customers' online experience.

But there's one area where personalization can have impressive effects -- customer retention.

Videos for Experiences, Sounds for the Sightless, Pictures for Words

The latest in personalizing, opening doors and enhancing from the Melting Pot, Utah's Dixie, the Birthplace of American Liberty and The City.

Marketing to Millennials: You're Doing it Wrong

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Millennials have it rough. Not only have they come of age in the worst economy since the Great Depression, but log on to any news site and you’re likely to find them assailed by older generations as selfie-taking, text-a-holic, unemployable idlers.

But perceptions of millennials are beginning to shift. A number of recent articles point out that millennials are not somehow worse than boomers or gen X, they’re just different. These differences touch many aspects of millennials’ lives -- from work ethic and prioritization, to spending habits and how they use technology.

As a demographic, they present obstacles for marketers. To understand these obstacles and overcome them, it’s important to first understand what makes millennials tick.

Dear Marketers, Thanks for Ruining My Holiday Shopping Experience

2014-04-December-vintage-christmas.jpgMy earliest memories of my late father include heading out to scoop up bargains on the day after Christmas. What, I wondered at the age of four, could be better than buying plastic reindeer and strings of fat multicolored bulbs for 50 percent off — 364 days before you'd ever want to use them?

Nothing, I concluded. It was fun, even exciting, a way to effectively extend the magic of the holiday just a little longer.

And now, through a flurry of ill-conceived marketing, the fun is over. Some Master Marketer who clearly lacked access to a calendar decided that After Christmas Sales would be even better before Christmas. And that triggered a rash of related, equally annoying decisions to accelerate sales of all kinds.

Black Friday on Thursday, anyone? How about Cyber Monday on Saturday? Why don't we just have sales all month long?

But that's not all. After the sales are accelerated, many of them are extended — so all those Cyber Monday specials are still out there on Thursday.

5 Components of a Social Media Policy in a Regulated Industry

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A sound social media policy serves two key purposes: 1. to educate employees on use within and outside a company work environment and 2. to mitigate corporate risk through guidance on process and procedure as it relates to industry compliance and messaging.

For some more heavily regulated industries, the latter becomes extremely important.

Using DAM Content Migration to Maximize Asset Value

2014-04-December-Trained-Migration.jpgInstalling a new digital asset management (DAM) system can be overwhelming. It requires a great deal of planning and coordination across multiple departments and groups. One of the biggest tasks is the migration of existing assets from one or more sources into the new DAM system.

While your vendor may offer a simple way to migrate old assets into the new DAM, they'll rarely spend the time to see how your organization can get the most value out of old assets. So before you jump in, take the time to consider the opportunities a content migration can offer.

How to Engage Affluent Consumers

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With holiday spending in full swing, companies that are best able to engage affluent customers, especially online, will no doubt be a lot jollier than their competitors. In fact, according to a report on affluent audiences, online purchases by those with larger incomes have risen significantly in just the last year.

So, what’s the secret to getting (and keeping) the attention of affluent customers long enough for them not to abandon their online shopping carts?

From paid ads to guest blog posts, we gathered some great tips on the subject from four digital experts willing to share their ideas.

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