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Tom Petrocelli News & Analysis

Have Retail Analytics Crossed the Line from Cool to Creepy?

2014-6-October-creepy-doll

A body of new solutions for retail businesses promises to both excite and upset consumers. These solutions deliver in-store (or near store) content to consumers that a vendor has decided might want to buy a product in the store.

The drivers are analytics software solutions that crunch data from a plethora of sources -- social, digital, point-of-sale and customer service -- in close to real time.

Consumers are organized into profiles or personas that can be scored by their propensity to buy a particular product at a point in time. Using these profiles, marketing professionals create and distribute personalized content that engages and, in theory, excites consumers enough to prompt a purchase. 

But could the technology just as easily agitate or annoy potential customers?

See the Whole Customer to Guide the Decision Journey

2014-02-September-Watermelons.jpgThe basis of the customer decision journey is that the customer follows a decision path that leads to a purchase. Vendors provide small pokes, prods and nudges along the way, often in the form of engaging content that keeps the customer moving toward buying something. The content needs to be highly personalized and based on demographics, individual buying patterns and other aspects of the buying experience.

While “the journey” is a better metaphor than many previous ones used by marketers, especially the militaristic “campaign” or industrial “funnel,” it tends to belie the complexity of the process of turning interest into purchase.

The Barriers to Working like a Network in Office 365

2014-07-August-Road-Block.jpgIt is frustrating to see the potential of technology and not have it realized. The solution is there but, as they say in New England, “you can’t get there from here.” Such is Office 365.

Social and Digital Channel Diversity Drives Engagement

2014-02-July-Mr-Softie.jpgMultichannel marketing -- interacting with customers through many channels at once -- is the flavor of the month in marketing. In theory, by communicating across social and digital (and perhaps physical and broadcast) channels, better engagement is possible. Like so many marketing buzzwords, one has to wonder if this is a lot of hype or if it is an important concept that everyone should integrate into their best practices.

Social Ideation Finds Ideas Worth Pursuing

2014-03-June-sticky-notes.jpgKnowledge-based companies have been driving much of the economy, especially in the United States and Europe. Information technology, media, biotech and pharmaceutical, financial services companies and many more are based on the ability to generate good ideas, turn them into technology and, eventually, products. The “business” of these companies is intellectual property (IP) -- basically an idea that has value. Even companies that don’t make money directly on IP have to worry about it.

IP is not only a product idea. It may also be a better way of doing business, a price model that offers a competitive advantage, or a way to achieve operational efficiencies.

Where the Differences Lie in Enterprise Social Networks

Where the Differences Lie in Enterprise Social NetworksAs more companies look to enterprise social networks to help boost collaboration, taking the first step can be difficult. Deploy the wrong enterprise social network and no one will use it, providing little to no value. Get it right and barriers between functional silos will fall and teams will operate with greater efficiency, flexibility and responsiveness.

The difficulties that companies have had in deploying enterprise social often start right at the beginning. It’s not hard to understand why choosing a product can be tough since most enterprise social networks look almost identical. All the basics are there in just about every product including microblogging and conversations, groups, and document, file, and content sharing. Security and other major enterprise deployment factors are also similar across vendors and products. On the surface, all enterprise social networks look the same. The path to value, however, lies in some key differences.

The Drag on Enterprise Mobile Applications: Security and Privacy

What we have today could barely be called enterprise mobile applications.

We have enterprise applications that exist in a mobile form. We even have some mobile applications meant for the enterprise. But what we have very little of is mobile applications that an IT professional would feel comfortable calling enterprise grade. There is a simple reason for this -- lack of viable security and privacy options that meet the needs of a large or even mid-sized enterprise.

Spend Time Where it Counts with Predictive Analytics

Spend Time Where it Counts with Predictive AnalyticsThere's a whole new world of marketing out there folks. The old ways of reaching prospects and reeling in customers are no longer enough. TV, radio, print and even internet ads are the price of admission for companies trying to reach and engage customers. Successful marketing professionals now have to contend with social media of many different forms, in-app mobile advertising, and community development and management.

Do Enterprise Social Networks Really Help Collaboration?

One of the most cited reasons that companies deploy enterprise social networks is to enhance collaboration. It’s easy to see why. The theory goes “Your team will collaborate better with an enterprise social network helping people to share information more easily.”

But is this true? Can sharing information more easily really help people to collaborate better?

IBM Looks Forward to Next Generation Computing #IBMConnect

Each year, the IBM faithful gather in Orlando Florida for IBM Connect, previously Lotusphere. This year, IBM combined it with the Kenexa World Conference as well, leading to an interesting mélange of IBM Notes administrators, Domino developers, human resources practitioners and social business strategists. The program was a similar gumbo of topics cutting across several IBM initiatives and product lines. It would be fair to say that, if you wanted to stretch beyond your usual topics, it would be easy at IBM Connect 2014. 

Bring the Internet of Things to Customer Service and Support

Bring the Internet of Things to Service and SupportThe Internet of Things promises to make everything that everyone owns Internet enabled. But many of the reasons for doing so -- such as collecting data on customers or marketing to customers when they are doing most anything -- are kind of creepy. Who wants every interaction with everyday items tracked by faceless companies? That’s what scientists do with the animals they study.

But one area shows potential for making the Internet of Things work for the customer: service and support

CMSWire Top Contributors 2013 - Tom Petrocelli

TomPetrocelli.jpgWith 30 years in the technology industry under his belt, Tom Petrocelli can weigh in on topics from social collaboration to social media, mobile enterprise to cloud computing, digital marketing to content management. No stranger to stirring up controversy, Tom writes it the way he sees it -- and people react.

CMSWire's Top 10 Hits of 2013: Intranets

Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Top 10 greenPity the modern intranet. It's hard to define, underappreciated, suffers from an identity crisis and is often regarded as a source of frustration. It may even have grown too big to fail

But the death of the intranet has been greatly exaggerated. They still hold a place in the enterprise, where they can drive employee communication and collaboration, facilitate document sharing and aid productivity, according to a bevy of CMSWire authors this year.  Here's a look at the 10 most popular intranet related stories of the year. 

Enterprise Social Networks: Vendors the Same, Adoption Slow

So let’s dive into an enterprise social network for our organization, you say?

Know this — not everyone is going to use it. Most probably won’t, in fact, and when you research a vendor for the platform, all of them will look pretty much the same.

2013: The Year of Mass Cloud Computing Extinctions

Information Management, 2013: The Year of Mass Cloud Computing ExtinctionsCloud computing provides tremendous value for businesses of all types. But as we can see from the number of products that shut down in 2013, it isn't all a silver lining. 

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