Customers know more than your sales team

I was recently looking for current statistics on what I call the “info-gap between sales and customers” and I came across some pretty stunning numbers (thanks to Motorola for sponsoring this Dec 2012 research):

3 out of 5 sales managers believe users are better
connected to information than their sales associates.

4 out of 5 sales associates believe improving communication
with managers would have a positive effect on shopper satisfaction.

I’ve been talking about this information gap for a while, and felt the numbers would be impressive, but even I thought these numbers are high.  Remember the classic family game The Game of Life?  If this were The Game of Sales then the customer would drive a Prius while the average sales associate feels they drive a Chevette.  Not a fair match-up, is it?More...

IBM's future - Mobile & Social Business

Earlier this week IBM reported their fourth quarter results and beat market expectations.  The company that was an IT powerhouse, then wasn’t, and is again, pulled in $29.3 billion in the quarter — certainly an impressive amount.  IBM’s numbers look very solid for this quarter and they’re offering some very good future expectations — and that bodes well for the economic recovery. 

But that’s not what this article is about.  This article is all about where IBM is telling us they’ll go.  If you read the commentary that goes with the results you’ll see this quote by Ginny Rometty, IBM CEO: “Looking ahead, we continue to invest to deliver innovations for the enterprise in key areas such as big data, mobile solutions, social business and security.” 

Wait.  What?
I get the big data piece — this is IBM after all and they’ve moved more bytes around than we can count and then stuffed them all into Watson, the supercomputer that won Jeopardy.  (By the way, if you want a quick laugh - check out this Fortune article on how Watson learned, and then was made to forget how to use profane language in its answers.)  But back to the point, I get big data and I get security.  Sure, those are IT/Enterprise staples.  IBM will be selling those two solutions until … well, you get the point.  But innovating in Mobile and Social Business?  That’s not the IBM we’ve known for years… is it?More...

Curating Content for Effective Social Marketing - Part 2

Part 2 of 2 Know your industry, brand, audience, and content.
In our last post we looked at what content marketing and content curating is. Leaving us with the question: how do you aim that enhanced content in the right direction? It starts by knowing your industry, brand, audience, and your content. However, we must lay out more questions in order to begin to answer our first question “how do you aim that enhanced content in the right direction?”More...

Challenges to encouraging employees to act as brand evangelists

Have you been hesitant to ask your employees to act as your brand’s storytellers, promoting your company and its products to friends, professional peers and family? Many organizations have been slow to allow their employees access to social media at work. This reluctance places your brand at a competitive disadvantage. Let’s look at the possible reasons your team is slow to the social media trough.

Business owners nationwide were astounded when The New York Times reported that two Domino’s Pizza employees deliberately mishandled customers’ food orders in the restaurant’s kitchen, then posted the video of their grotesque pranks online. Within two days, thanks to the power of social media, more than a million disgusted viewers had watched the video, and Domino’s faced a public relations crisis. References to the prank were in five of the top 12 results of Google searches for “Dominos,” and discussions about it had spread throughout the internet.More...

What can employees do as brand advocates?

Marketing professionals have long understood the importance of promoting their brand to external stakeholders. Ironically, as they implement marketing strategies, they frequently forget their most valuable internal connections: employees.

An article in Fast Company Design explains that employees are your brand — the creators and producers of the products or services you offer to the world. They are engaged and care about your company’s success. They understand your organization and can speak about you in an approachable and honest way. An article in the human resources publication, Talent Minded details the impact of employees who are also enthusiastic brand advocates as an incredible advantage against your competition.More...

What is a brand advocate?

There's a lot of talk about brand advocates in commerce and marketing circles recently. What isn’t generally explained, however, is exactly what a brand advocate is and why you should care so much about them.

In digital marketing and social media sales, a brand advocate is a person who speaks favorably about a brand or service, and shares positive word-of-mouth (WOM) messages with other people. In business terms a brand advocate is someone that can be a key to your success but isn't looking for personal compensation. Why do these advocates use social media to talk about brands? There may be many reasons but the key factor is that they want to help their connections - family, friends and business associates to make informed decisions. However it is these ‘informed’ decisions that can lead to the success and adoption of your products and services.
 More...

Welcome to Kurryer’s new blog.

Twenty years ago, I was asked by my manager at Microsoft to become an evangelist for our product (Microsoft Access, wow!). My mission: to get our team members, other employees at Microsoft, and our partners to get to know Access, to know our competition, and to be able to tell the story of why Access was better.

I didn’t know it at the time but that was my first experience with brand advocacy – people, some closer than others, telling the story of my product. More...