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Digital News & Analysis

3 Barriers to Delivering Omnichannel Experiences

2014-17-July-Caught-a-Fish.jpgI was recently searching for fishing rods for my 5-year old son and his friends to use at our neighborhood pond. I know nothing about fishing, so I needed to get educated. First up, a Google search on my laptop at home. Then, I jostled between my phone, tablet and laptop visiting websites, reading descriptions, looking at photos and reading reviews. Offline, I talked to friends and visited local stores.

The product descriptions weren’t very helpful. What is a “practice casting plug”? Turns out, this was a great feature! Instead of a hook, the rod had a rubber fish to practice casting safely. What a missed opportunity for the retailers who didn’t share this information. I bought the fishing rods from the retailer that educated me with valuable product information and offered free three to five day shipping.

What does this mean for companies who sell products across multiple channels? 

Adobe and Neolane, 1 Year (and a Few Days) Later

Thumbnail image for 2014-16-July-Stephan-Dietrich.jpgSay “Adobe” 10 years ago and people would think “pdf” or “Photoshop.” Heck, say “Adobe” five years ago and people would think “pdf” or “Photoshop.”

While those words still come to mind when you hear Adobe today, chances are you are just as likely to think Marketing Cloud.

Adobe has come a long way since its acquisition of Omniture in 2009, which set the groundwork for its current Marketing Cloud.  

With last year's purchase of Neolane, Adobe came one step closer to realizing its goal of bringing the right and left brains of marketing together. Vice President of Adobe Campaign, Americas and Neolane co-founder Stephan Dietrich sat down to discuss the progress made in the first year since the acquisition announcement and the road ahead for the Marketing Cloud.

The Good - and Perplexing - News About Corporate Social Media

Like many of us, corporate social media is maturing. But a new report from social consultancy Useful Social Media sends some confusing signs about social media's trends in companies.

"This year," The State of Corporate Social Media/2014 states, "we appear to have reached something of a fork in the road."

In this last three versions of the report, the firm noted, "it has been evident that social media use was scaling up rapidly across businesses around the world."

But now:

  • The size of the social media team is falling. Does this show that social is being dispersed within businesses, or that companies are losing their interest?
  • Fewer budgets are growing. Does this mean that infrastructure costs have already been covered, or that fewer companies are seeing a return?
  • Fewer KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) are being measured. Is this a sign of less interest in measurement, or just less interest in measuring KPIs as they relate to social?

How Customer Communities Bolster Support Teams

2014-15-July-Contact-Center.jpgThe business benefits of customer communities are well known: call deflection, search engine optimization (SEO), product ideation and even revenue growth. While some of these benefits directly benefit customer support teams, others benefit the broader organization.

Customer engagement helps sales teams drive incremental revenue, ideation helps inform the product roadmap for product management and SEO helps the marketing team rank higher for particular keywords. Ask customer support managers and they’ll tell you how customer communities can make their teams more valuable.

Customers Don't Care About Your Processes

2014-15-July-Milk-Processing.jpgIn January of last year, Macy's became the first major retailer to name a Chief Omnichannel Officer. In May of this year, Target announced the formation of a new Digital Advisory Committee to focus specifically on brainstorming omnichannel strategies.

Clearly the need to deliver true omnichannel experiences is something that retailers and their marketing teams are taking very, very seriously.

Crying for Help? MindTouch is Listening

How can you get into the mind of your customers? MindTouch, the company that's trying to redefine the help center, has released two updates for better understanding of customers.

The company, founded by two ex-members of Microsoft's Advanced Systems Research Team, describes the occasion when customers reach out for help – when they obviously want to use your product, but just don't know how – as an opportunity.

What's the Most Popular Social Login on B2B Sites?

What's the most popular social login on B2B sites? We know ... and we will share the findings, based on a new report from social login provider Janrain.

The report, "Social Login Trends Across the Web for Q2 2014," also found that Facebook is bouncing back after six straight quarters of falling market share in the realm of social logins on all sites. The report notes that over half of new users employ social login, because it eliminates the need to "remember yet another username-password combination."

What Matters (and What Doesn't) for Flexible, Agile Solutions

2014-14-July-Many-Languages-Love.jpgEnterprises don't lack for choices. In one of his final blog posts before leaving Forrester as an analyst, David Aponovich summed up the importance of web content management to creating digital customer experiences.

He wrote that “WCM has become an essential foundation for enabling successful digital experience efforts. And by doing so, it’s supporting one of the last things that corporations and brands can use to differentiate themselves.”

Find the Opportunity in Showrooming

2014-14-July-Shopping-Mall.jpgHave you ever gone into a store, found a product you wanted to buy and then pulled out your smartphone to check reviews or search for a better price online? It might feel like you’re cheating the system, but you’re not alone. This is the way people shop today -- and it’s called showrooming. 

Google published research in May 2013 on how mobile is transforming the shopping experience in stores. It found that “84 percent of shoppers use their phones while in a physical store.”

Cloudwords Offers New Solution for Global Marketers

Marc Benioff-backed Cloudwords is continuing its quest to help global marketers manage multi-lingual content. The cloud-based translation management application today announced Campaign Manager, an enterprise-ready solution designed to help marketers "plan, execute and track" the localization and translation of marketing content for global campaigns.

Benioff, the CEO of salesforce.com, was one of the original investors in the San Francisco-based company. 

Cloudwords was founded in 2010 by "individuals who gave birth to cloud computing," including Scott Yancey, a key architect on the salesforce.com platform, and Michael Meinhardt, a consultant who advised numerous enterprise customers on their global translation strategy, including Cisco Systems, Hitachi Data Systems, Apple and Symantec.

The Customer Feedback Revolution

The web is one of the most perfect feedback environments, where the creator and the consumer become intertwined in the network. 

Constant Contact Becoming a Platform Vendor

2014-14-July-vendors-selling-toolkits.jpg

Known mainly as a provider of cloud-based email marketing solutions for small businesses, Constant Contact has been expanding its product offerings, transforming itself into a platform vendor.

With more than 605,000 customers (including roughly 40,000 net new additions in 2013 and 10,000 in the first quarter), Constant Contact has the ability to sell a greater number of solutions (covering event registration, online surveys, coupons and social media campaigns) into an increasingly large installed base.

Now it has the potential to do even more with a product called Constant Contact Toolkit, which it claims which brings together all of the online marketing tools needed to drive new and repeat customers across key channels.

2 Final World Cup Lessons in Marketing Agility

2014-14-July-lights-put-soccer.jpg

Every four years, the world watches in anticipation to see who will rise victorious in the World Cup. Here in the US, we’ve spent the past month pretending our best to be avid soccer or futbol fans. (Kidding, of course, as our affinity for the “beautiful game” has clearly grown since 2010.)

But to be honest, the competition this year has been amazing. Teams have spent years building a solid foundation of teamwork, talent and coaching prowess to earn spots in the World Cup. Countless hours of preparation have come down to a few inches to determine who wins or loses — responsiveness and agility capture the golden opportunity.

Just like the World Cup teams, our marketing organizations have prepared to be agile enough to take advantage of every opportunity to connect users to our brands, convert new customers and engage with social media.

Omnichannel Service Takes the Whole Company

When we look to a company for answers, what do we want?

We want a seamless experience and answers tailored to our needs, no matter how we reach out. Whether we visit a store, check a website, send an email, call customer service or all of the above, we want the source or person on the other end to understand our relevant history and quickly provide answers. We want omnichannel service, and so do our customers.

This Week: 3 WCM Innovators + Enterprise File Sync and Share Top Dogs

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Mobile Enterprise Showdown
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Gartner's EFFS Leaders
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Box Cashes In
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The Forrester Wave for Enterprise Social Platforms
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