DECEMBER | 2012
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Vol. 9, No. 12 2012
Cover Story 8
6 7 12
14 16 18 20 21 22
contributors: who’s who in the industry results: b est ways to use data-sharing to optimize marketing campaigns and produce better overall results
tech: reshaping social media in 2013 brand building: for brands being cool is as hot as sex travel: travel & tourism – the year in review marketing tips: how do you rate exhibit: The harsh realities of lead follow-up advice: tough days
4 Brilliant Results
• December 2012
Don’t be the fall guy
The Other Guys
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PUBLISHER / ADVERTISING Maureen Williams email@example.com 717-608-5869
EDITORIAL Editor in Chief
As we close
this first year as a digital only magazine we are so grateful for the volume of positive responses and wealth of information we have received. While, it was a nerve-wracking decision to go digital, your loyal readership continues to prove that it was the right decision. You told us that digital Issues are your most preferred method of receiving magazine content, so we will continue to provide you topical insights and information that will keep your marketing departments on the cutting edge. Brilliant Results could not continue it successful publication record without all your support and input. And with that in mind we offer this our last issue of 2012. This issue is packed with ideas that will help you make a fresh start in 2013. You may even realize your brands dream of being “cool”. It will be a great 2013 if we achieve even half of our goals. Lets resolve first and foremost to have fun trying! Make it a Brilliant Year ahead!
Style Editor Charity Plata
Asst. Editor Molly Anika
Contributing Writers Barton Goldsmith, Ph.D., David Lee King, Martin Lindstrom, Andrew Martin, Mark Simmons Barry Siskind, Dr. Peter Tarlow, John Tschohl
PRODUCTION / DESIGN Art Director
Jeremy Tingle Brilliant Results is published monthly by Brilliant Publishing LLC, 9034 Joyce Lane Hummelstown PA 17036 (717) 608-5869; Fax# (717) 566-5431. Copyright © 2012 Brilliant Publishing LLC. All rights reserved. The publisher reserves the right to accept or reject any advertising or editorial material. Advertisers, and/or their agents, assume the responsibility for any claims against the publisher based on the advertisement. Editorial contributors assume responsibility for their published works and assume responsibility for any claims against the publisher based on published work. No part of this publication can be reproduced in any form or by electronic or mechanical means, including information storage and retrieval systems, without written
Maureen Williams Publisher firstname.lastname@example.org 717-608-5869 Follow us on twitter: http://www.twitter.com/@Bresults
permission from the publisher. All items submitted to Brilliant Results become the sole property of Brilliant Publishing LLC. Editorial content does not reflect the views of the publisher. The imprints, logos, trademarks or trade names (Collectively the “Marks”) displayed on the products featured in Brilliant Results are for illustrative purposes only and are not available for sale. The marks do not represent the implied or actual endorsement by the owners of the Marks of the product on which they appear. All of the Marks are the property of the respective owners and is not the property of either the advertisers using the Marks or Brilliant Results.
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• December 2012
Barton Goldsmith, Ph.D. For
Andrew Martin, President
than two decades Fortune 500 companies,
Andrew runs the North American division of
infrastructure and development for end-user
Goldsmith to help them develop creative and balanced leadership. His columns appear in
over 500 publications. He may be contacted
through his web site www.BartonGoldsmith.com
David Lee King is the Digital Services
Director at Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library. He speaks internationally about emerging trends, website management, digital experience, and social media, and has been published two books, Designing the Digital Experience, 2008, and his most recent title, face2face: Using Facebook, Twitter, and Other Social Media Tools to Create Great Customer Connections (CyberAge Books). For more information visit www.davidleeking.com.
Metia. His technology experience includes
and consultancy companies around the globe. Andrew first made his mark as a digital leader when he designed and implemented the IT
infrastructure for an international recruitment
company, helping it to become one of the fastest growing companies in the United
Kingdom three years in a row. Since then, his unique perspective on digital communications and operations has grown several Internet-
alike, with a focus on retail, technology, and
sports/entertainment businesses. Andrew has
delivered digital solutions for companies such as Microsoft, AT&T, AmazonFresh, Tesco, Next, and Sports World.
Mark Simmons is co-founder/managing
partner of Mixed Digital, a hybrid search and social
people by TIME magazine. The founder, CEO
For more information, please visit mixeddigital.
(Sydney), Martin speaks to a global audience
as one of the world’s 100 most influential
media agency headquartered in Durham, NC.
and Chairman of the LINDSTROM company
com or get social - @mixeddigital, facebook.com/
His book; Buyology – Truth and Lies About Why
based start-ups and Fortune 500 companies
branding and marketing expert, was selected
of approximately one million people every year.
is an internationally
We Buy – a New York Times and Wall Street
recognized trade and consumer show expert. He
into 37 languages and is on almost all major
including Powerful Exhibit Marketing. Read his
Journal best-selling book has been translated
is the author of six bestselling business books
best-seller lists worldwide.
newest book, Selling from the Inside Out for an
in depth guide to a successful sales career. Visit
Barry at www.siskindtraining.com.
Dr. Peter Tarlow is the founder and president of Tourism & More Inc. Dr. Tarlow has appeared on nationally televised programs such as Dateline: NBC and on CNBC. Dr. Tarlow organizes conferences around the world dealing with visitor safety and security issues and with the economic importance of tourism and tourism marketing. For additional information visit www.tourismandmore.com
h John Tschohl, is founder and president of the Service Quality Institute in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Described by USA Today, Time, and Entrepreneur as a “customer service guru,” he has written several books on customer service and has developed more than 26 customerservice training programs that have been distributed throughout the world.
December 2012 • Brilliant Results 7
By: Andrew Martin
The year 2012 was transitional for digital marketing. Many of the technologies
and marketing channels that first emerged in 2011 were refined in 2012, and we’ll see a more confident use of those technologies and channels in 2013. Marketing is converging with corporate IT strategy, and more customer interactions are taking place digitally. Mobile marketing strategies demand that technology evolve at a record pace. Data and data management will also be critical in 2013, as big data and marketing automation put more pressure on IT solutions. Here are a few key trends that marketers should consider as they finalize their FY13 planning:
Marketing Automation Many businesses have invested in data collection and management, and those with CMS systems have the capability for marketing automation baked in. We expect a shift toward increased marketing automation in 2013, as marketers set up triggered messaging programs to deliver personalized, timely, relevant communication to customers and prospects efficiently and effectively. Many marketers will need to invest in data normalization in 2013 so that their programs can function properly with minimal intervention. Marketing automation is an outstanding development for the marketing departments that lost staff and funding following the financial crisis in 2009. Automation enables smaller teams to do more with less while delivering a better outcome for customers.
The Rise of Touch and NUI In 2012, touch was a nice-to-have or novel feature. In 2013, touch will be expected, simply because there are now too many devices that support it to ignore it. The rise of touch signals the impending death of the “mouseover” or “hover state,” and has fundamentally changed UX conventions that have been in place since the mid-1990s. With iOS, Apple showed the world how the graphical touch paradigm should work. Touch interfaces are characterized by responsive, fluid, and direct interaction. Expect interactions to move beyond the screen, as both input and output increasingly use voice and gesture. While Apple led the way with touch, Microsoft is also regarded as a pioneer in voice and gesture since the release of Kinect, which has facial and voice recognition in addition to gesture interaction.
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Early natural user interface (NUI) experiments are resulting in more sophisticated and user-friendly interactions. The impact of democratized touch and gesture development is hard to predict. Designers and developers have a stronger understanding of UX principles now than they did during the dot com boom, but UX for NUI is still being refined. We’ll see mistakes being made along the way, particularly regarding precision and data entry, which are big challenges for touch, gesture, and voice interactions.
The Recommendation Culture Demands More Video and Social Sharing More and more customers rely on recommendations before deciding to make a purchase. Reviews are typically joined by case studies, customer quotes, testimonial videos, and social interactions. Specifically, video and social media are the big front-runners for recommendation content in 2013.
IT departments work on priorities. Marketing departments work on opportunities. CTOs and CMOs recognized the importance of collaboration in 2012, and in 2013 these disciplines will gain confidence in each other and innovate more regularly to meet the needs of both teams. Data ownership will need to be shared so that disparate groups can use data effectively and for their unique purposes. This data must be cared for in terms of quality and accuracy, and it must be clear who has primary ownership over a contact relationship. The data can be shared democratically, but the relationship is at risk if it is managed in the same way. We expect to see more companies formalizing relationship hierarchies as they increase crossfunctional collaboration.
COPE: Create Once and Publish Everywhere The myriad of communication channels means there are more interlaced outlets for publishing content. Marketers will spend more time up front producing multiple forms of the same content. Expect to see variations of a single story executed in various lengths and formats to maximize impact on the web, blog, social sites, PR, sales materials and internal communications. Marketers that lack content strategies that account for the differences and interactions among various media will struggle to keep up.
The Pendulum Swings Away from Apps and Back to Mobile Web Marketers invested heavily in mobile apps in 2011, and that investment came to roost in 2012 with expensive and arduous application updates, device releases, and platform changes. 2013 will see an increase in demand for adaptive and responsive web development so that content can be distributed on a wider variety of devices, as well as maintained and updated easily.
Data Drives Convergence of IT and Marketing Customer relationship management (CRM) technologies can bring together a cross-functional team including sales, marketing, IT, and support—and those teams will be challenged to address data in new ways in 2013. More marketers will make the leap to marketing automation, which taps into those CMS systems. Further, marketing automation, social media, and consumer feedback are adding a layer of complexity to program analytics and the CRM tools. www.brilliantpublishing.com
Internet of Things The Internet of Things is a world where physical objects are seamlessly integrated into the information network, and where the physical objects can become active participants in processes. This trend is changing the face of marketing, with devices becoming sources for customer data as well as communication channels. Services are able to interact with these “smart objects” over the Internet, query, and change their state and any information associated with them—all while taking into account security and privacy issues. “Mobile” no longer refers only to the use of smartphones and tablets. Cellular technology is being embedded in many new types of devices, including pharmaceutical containers December 2012 • Brilliant Results 9
and cars. Smartphones and other intelligent devices don’t just use the cellular network, they communicate via NFC, Bluetooth, LE, and Wi-Fi to a range of devices and peripherals such as wristwatch displays, healthcare sensors, smart posters, and home entertainment systems. It’s an exciting time for marketers, designers, and developers, but mistakes will be made along the way. We expect to see more experimenting with interconnected objects and devices in 2013, and this will be an important period of innovation, testing, entrepreneurialism, and—sometimes—failure.
The Mobile Enterprise As more employees conduct business on smartphones, businesses will need to update intranets to be mobilefriendly. Juniper Research predicts that 350 million workers worldwide will use personal mobile devices at work by 2014, more than double today’s figures. Traditionally it’s been rare for an intranet to be developed with mobile use in mind, and this year companies will see a drop in intranet adoption for those sites that are not phone-friendly. Marketers need to keep mobile sharing in mind as well. Any demos, customer-facing applications, or sales tools should be designed and developed for smartphones and tablets. Consumerization of IT will mean enterprises won’t be able to force users to give up their iPads or Windows 8 tablets without giving them something they feel is comparable. Enterprises will need to support a greater variety of devices and let go of standardization for tablet hardware.
The Social Enterprise Many businesses want to foster a social community, but they want to do it in a closed and managed environment. That’s where enterprise social networks come into play. What can we learn from Yammer, Microsoft’s new internal social network? Yammer is seeing higher adoption and satisfaction rates than previous attempts at enterprise social networks by Microsoft. The reason for Yammer’s success is not just the platform—it’s also due to internal communication and incentives such as ties to career development goals. If we’ve learned one thing from the vast wasteland of failed intranets, it’s that internal communication tools need a lot of support to succeed. The same holds true for enterprise social networks. As companies continue to embrace social media and move to a more comprehensive approach, the architecture of their social media teams is changing. Cross-functional social media teams (both internal and external) will replace ad hoc and rogue social media initiatives in order to manage all aspects of social media (job postings, customer services, paid advertising, campaigns, content promotion, analytics, etc.). While some companies will continue to struggle in
determining which department owns their social media channels, companies that are successful with social media will develop teams of social media professionals that work across multiple departments.
Responsive Design for Email Email marketing has been around for about 20 years, and it has become the cornerstone of most communications programs. The way that people receive and experience email marketing has changed dramatically with the surge in smartphone adoption. In 2013, we will see a shift away from mobile optimization approaches that require the design and development of two different emails, each using the same content. Mobile optimization for email will instead turn to a responsive web design (RWD) approach, in which the layout of a site automatically adapts to the viewing characteristics of the device accessing it. This will allow marketers to design and develop a single email that serves up content based on the type of device that is being used. Responsive web will make high-quality mobile email more pervasive and deliver a better experience for customers.
Strategic Big Data In this highly connected world, data analysis is evolving from its initial focus on discrete projects. Data analysis is now taking on the challenges of enterprise information architecture and big data. Dealing with data volume, variety, velocity, and complexity is leading organizations away from the concept of a single enterprise data warehouse containing all the information needed for decisions and toward multiple systems, including content management, data warehouses, data marts, and specialized file systems tied together with data services and metadata. Data infrastructure will require scalability, collaboration, and embedded logic, and it must be nimble in order to address the needs of a variety of teams and marketing channels.
Marketing in 2013: The Bottom Line There are tried-and-true marketing channels like email marketing and customer advocacy that continue to be important, even as mobile, data, and social channels rapidly evolve. The key in 2013 will be the seamless integration of these channels, through a strong content strategy. The integration and interaction of previously disparate systems and teams will be a running theme this year, and marketers need to be ready to build upon their relationships with cross-functional teams to make the most of this opportunity. The ultimate goal is to create stronger relationships with customers, and strengthening the relationships within an organization will be the first step in accomplishing that goal.
Brilliant Results would like to thank Alison Gillespie of Plat4orm PR, http://www.plat4ormpr.com, for bringing Andrew Martin’s work to our attention.
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results By: Mark Simmons
Best ways to use datasharing to
marketing campaigns and produce
better overall results
When campaigns are managed by separate agencies, there are missed opportunities for growth and profit.
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Over the years,
marketers have employed the multiple agency approach. The general thought is that using specialized agencies for each marketing discipline will yield the greatest results. This thinking has been the norm for companies of all sizes, across all industries and could not be further from the truth. The inherent problem when managing marketing campaigns in this manner is that of datasharing – or a lack thereof. When campaigns are managed by separate agencies, there are missed opportunities for growth and profit. In today’s world of sophisticated, enterprise-level web analytics software such as Adobe’s SiteCatalyst, WebTrends, and Google Analytics, it is that much easier to uncover the important data. Since data tells the story, it should drive decision-making. The problem is that campaign managers, executives, and entrepreneurs look at the wrong data. Too often, they only consider the last click, interaction, or touch point. This behavior undervalues other channels that lead to and contribute to the final conversion. Let’s explore an example. Social media is notoriously undervalued simply for its difficulty in attributing revenue against marketing efforts (“Why Marketers Aren’t Giving Social the Credit it Deserves”). A movie studio is putting out a newly, re-mastered Blu-ray disc of a popular film. It distributes a new trailer via social media sites like Facebook, www.brilliantpublishing.com
Twitter, and YouTube. It also runs paid search and display ad campaigns, driving traffic to the online e-commerce site. Typically, marketers would look at the data, capturing the sales driven by paid search or the display ads, but likely not see sales from social media. One would make the determination that social media was not successful. Now that we can view the channel attribution data for conversion, we can see how the other channels played a part in the final conversion. This can be accomplished in two ways. The first view is the “assist” metric. This shows how each channel assisted in a conversion when that conversion’s last click took place on another channel. A common scenario is that someone saw the trailer on Facebook, visited the site, then came back via a paid search ad on another day, and made a purchase. Social media assisted in the sale and deserves some credit. Too often, results are not properly attributed to the right channels. The second view is the “channel path” view. This shows which channels contributed and the path the user took. You can breakdown how many touch points there were and which channels played a role. From there, you can figure out how effective your overall marketing is, channel by channel. This level of insight is invaluable, which brings us back to our initial point - the value of data-sharing. In these examples, it is beneficial to have one agency manage multiple channels. In this fashion, they have easy
access to all the data and can create useful reports to summarize and highlight a campaign’s strong and weak points. Strategy is adjusted according to the numbers, not on hunches. Contrast this with the multi-agency model and you can see how sharing of data would be somewhat of a challenge. How often have you seen two agencies truly willing to work together and not compete for the same business? Due to the presence of multiple reports and differing strategies, creating a consolidated reporting process is easier said than done. Marketers can lose the value of viewing the data in a cohesive manner and on a regular basis. The old model of multiple agencies, reports, and strategies is ending…the new singular agency model that views data in a more holistic manner will soon be the new reality. Marketers will avoid managing campaigns in silos, losing the advantage data-sharing affords. Marketers will also adopt the true multi-channel approach and reap the benefits by allowing the data to sculpt the strategy and uncover the hidden opportunities overlooked in the past.
December 2012 • Brilliant Results 13
TECH By: David Lee King
Reshaping Social Media in 2013
Social media has been around for over ten years. My guess is that by now, your organization is probably involved in some way with social media. Maybe you have created a Twitter or Facebook account. Maybe you even have some friends and fans on those accounts, and you share things with them when you have time. Let’s rework this in 2013. Social media is now mainstream, and your customers are using it to connect. They connect easily to each other, and since the tool is the same, they will find it easy to connect to your organization, too ... if you make a few easy-to-do adjustments in your approach to business-facing social media. Here are five simple adjustments you can make to kick-start your organization’s social media efforts in 2013:
2. Focus on the Visual 1. Focus on Conversations First off, let’s focus on conversations. Many organizations and businesses have been using social media status updates as a broadcasting tool. They send out notices of events, sales, or coupons. Possibly, they have used social media as an easy outlet to send out press releases and important corporate announcements. Guess what? If your organization focuses primarily on sending out corporate communications, your customers will tune out your organization and unfriend you in a heartbeat. In 2013, instead of using social media as a one-way broadcast tool, work on starting and continuing conversations with your customers. This will require your organization to do three important things: Listen before you speak. Set up some listening tools (Google alerts and Twitter search alerts are good places to start) to see what your customers are saying about you; Respond, using colloquial, conversational language. This will feel weird - you’re used to more formal marketing-speak. Make it feel like you’re talking to a work colleague at the water cooler - do this, and people will start talking to you; and, Figure out what types of conversations YOU want to start. Do some brainstorming on the conversations your organization needs to hear in 2013, and start those conversations.
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For the most part, many businesses and organizations have been posting text-heavy status updates in their social media accounts. That makes sense in textbased Twitter, but not so much in Facebook. In fact, Facebook best practices show that when you do one simple thing - add a photo or a video to your post engagement increases by 100% or more. So get those cameras out of your pockets (yes, that iPhone or Android smartphone makes a great pointand-shoot camera), and start taking photos around the office, the warehouse, or the store. Maybe think about the three most important things that your customers should know about your organization, take photos of that, and then share those photos with customers.
3. Focus on Video That smartphone I just mentioned in #2 is also HD quality video recorder, and we can put it to good use! There’s a reason YouTube is so popular right now - people love watching short videos. Studies show that people engage more with video posts than with text-only posts. Here’s my guess - most likely, you haven’t made many videos for your organization. If you have created some videos, it probably resembled a TV commercial. That’s not what your customers want to watch. Instead, get to the point immediately - YouTube suggests that the first 15 seconds are critical to connect with viewers. So don’t waste those seconds with titles, fade-ins, and credits. Just start sharing your main points. Then post that video to two places - YouTube and Facebook. Use YouTube to share in most places, and use the Facebook upload to share with your Facebook page fans. Facebook’s algorithm favors videos uploaded to Facebook, so those will get seen more than a shared YouTube video.
4. Focus on Next Steps Many times, organizations post information to their social media accounts, but don’t include anything for customers to do. They don’t include a next step. Let’s change that in 2013. Make sure that everything you do includes some type of “ask.” That ask can be as simple as asking customers to “friend or fan” a Facebook Page, or the ask might be to click a link that takes them to a new product or a buy-it-now page. More people will click if you actually ask them to click. Because of this, make sure to provide customers with some next steps, and actually invite them to take that next step. Do that, and your organization will be one step closer to continued engagement with customers. 5. Focus on your Customers! Finally, most businesses and organizations, believe it or not, don’t actually focus on their customers! Instead, they focus on their stuff, on their showroom floor, or on their sales staff.
In 2013, let’s focus on our customers. Engage them in conversation. Ask them if they like what they’re seeing. Ask them to take next steps, and invite them into your organization. Follow these five simple reshaping steps, and you will be well on your way to having a great 2013 with social media, and with some really engaged customers, too.
December 2012 • Brilliant Results 15
department Brand building pg BY: MARTIN LINDSTROM
For Brands, Being Cool Is As Hot As
We all know
why sex sells, but coolness? It’s mercurial, ethereal, and hard to measure. So why does everyone care so much about it? The decision was made–and then made headlines across the globe. In the U.K.’s high court, Judge Colin Birss presided over Apple’s fight with Samsung, in which Apple claimed Samsung’s Galaxy tablet was way too similar to its iPad. The judge disagreed. In his ruling he said that the Galaxy “does not have the same understated and extreme simplicity which is possessed by the Apple design.” And then came three little words that reflect one of the biggest, most powerful ideas in business. The Judge declared that the Galaxy is “not as cool” as the iPad. Now Apple is a brand that’s been considered cool from the moment the first Macintosh was introduced in 1984. Cool is something every technology brand in the world aspires to be. BlackBerry and Nokia would pay millions to be associated with the trait, if only they could. So would shoe makers, car manufacturers, clothing labels, and probably every celebrity on the planet. Cool is–and has been for some time–the hottest word in branding, and every brand wants a piece of it.
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Cool is also mercurial, ethereal, and hard to measure. That hasn’t stopped a group of psychologists from conducting a three-part research study investigating the essence of coolness. The results of their investigation were surprising… but first; let’s take a step back in time. Values, which serve as a kind of architectural framework, underpin a brand. This keeps the brand solid and consistent. In other words, a brand is a little like a person you form a trusting relationship with; you rely on it to perform. In their search to be cool, brands often aspire to align their values with well-known personalities. In the 1990s, Madonna was all the rage. “We want to stand for what she stands for,” were the words on the lips of every marketing executive I spoke with. Back then; she was less preoccupied with staying young, and more focused on making interesting dance music and compelling, sexy videos. She was cool. During the first part of this century, the notion of cool shifted to people like Richard Branson. His entrepreneurial spirit and, well, cool, was highly appealing to a new generation of marketing professionals. They wanted what he had, and brands were subsequently steered in similar directions as Branson’s Virgin group. Cool brands manage the delicate balance of being well-defined entities, as well as being highly desirable. Often this comes from a close association with a single word: think “search,” and you think “Google”; or “safety” and “Volvo” pops to mind; “cowboy” conjures “Marlboro.” So what is the essence of cool? Just recently the Journal of Individual Differences published the results of a study led by Ilan Dar-Nimrod, a psychologist at the University of Rochester Medical Center in New York. The researchers set out to define coolness beyond a general understanding of what’s nice, likable and popular. For the study 353 volunteers were asked to submit adjectives they associated with coolness. Surprisingly, the word “friendly” topped the list, followed by “personal competence.” This ranking positioned socially skilled, popular, smart, and talented people as being the ultimate in cool; individualist hipsters featured lower on the list. BarIlan concluded: “Coolness has lost so much of its historical origins and meaning.” That is: rebels are not hot. Or cool. Another attribute figured prominently in this recent study: physical attractiveness. The prominence of
“good looks” in the study echoes the results of work I carried out for my most recent book, Brandwashed. During my $3 million study into the way word-of-mouth works, I asked a family of five to secretly promote brands to a cadre of their friends, family members and colleagues. During this experiment, I learned that the key to the family’s success was neither their extensive network, nor their gift of the gab; it was their good looks. A slew of books published in the last year attest to this. Daniel Hamermesh describes why attractive people are more successful in Beauty Pays, whereas Deborah Rhodes’s The Beauty Bias argues for a legal basis to prohibit discrimination against those who are not gifted in the looks department. A while back, the BBC made a television documentar y about the impor tance appearance plays in our lives. One of Britain’s top models was made to appear frumpy for a day. She was then tasked with a variety of roles –to look for a job, to approach people on the street for directions, and to randomly of fer help to others. At the end of the day, she was asked to assess how impor tant her looks were in achieving what she’d achieved. Without hesitating, she answered: “ Ever y thing.” She was f labbergasted to find just how unhelpful people were during her day as an average looking person. So here’s a wild hypothesis: If looks go a long way to defining a cool human being, how does this relate to brands? Apple has sleek lines and stylish displays, but does the brand have a sense of humor? Is it sociable? Well, yes. Just look at those winning ads where the uncool guy took on the role of a PC, and the fun, socially engaging and handsome guy was a Mac. Which brand would you prefer to be? Can this revised formula for coolness be adapted to every brand and category? Perhaps. As with everything, I’m sure there are exceptions, but it is an intriguing thought. As brands become increasingly sophisticated in their strategies to capture the hearts and minds of consumers, so more sophisticated means of identifying, defining and locking in the perfect set of values is required. Of course it’s one thing to theoretically label your product or store cool, in the hope that the consumer will concur; it’s quite another to achieve it. But with good looks, a dose of humor, and a splash of social awareness, you may yet realize the dream.
So what is the essence of cool?
December 2012 • Brilliant Results 17
Travel BY: Dr. Peter Tarlow
– m s i r u o T & l e v w Tra e i v e R n i r a e Y e Th
Many people in the travel industry traditionally heave a sigh of relief when December rolls around. As in 2011, once again in 2012, one topic dominated world travel: the economy. In the US it was a major election issue, and in Europe people wondered if the euro zone would survive. Because “travel & tourism” is a highly leisure-oriented industry, much of the industry is dependent on disposable income. That means that when the economy coughs tourism is likely to catch pneumonia. As in the case of 2011, 2012 has been especially challenging. Not only 18 Brilliant Results
• December 2012
because of the troubling economy, high unemployment and reduced family incomes, but also do to a less stable world and higher rates of both terrorism and crime. Once again both food and fuel prices continued to soar throughout the year. Added to this level of economy malaise, family incomes decreased and consumer confidence continued to be low. Despite all of this economic bad news, we see that the tourism industry is a lot more robust than many people thought and the tourism and travel picture is far from as dismal as we have expected. Here is a quick synopsis of some of the industry’s major components. www.brilliantpublishing.com
Airlines. The airline industry continued to see
consolidation and cutbacks in both service and frequency of flights. The merger of Continental and United airlines was at first far from smooth, but seems now to have solved many of the initial problems. It is unclear what will happen to American Airlines, currently in bankruptcy, with mergers possible. On the brighter side it now appears that TSS is taking some measures to decrease the hassle travel factor and although customer service is far from good, it appears to be at least not getting worse.
Once again, rental cars have been a bright spot within the travel industry and the rental car industry has become a viable alternative to air travel. Rental car companies have decreased significantly the paperwork and hassle factor, they have improved customer service and in many places have created off-site rental agencies that help travelers to avoid the expensive cost of parking at an airport and paying airport usage fees. Some clouds for rental car users are the price of fuel and exorbitant airport fees.
legislation that touched everything from foods that were not allowed to be sold to the size of a drink that a fast food restaurant might offer.
Tourism Security issues.
Although places such as Afghanistan, Syria, and Libya are not on the tourist map, the continual turmoil in these countries serves to remind the traveler that tourism is not only fun but has security challenges as well. On a positive level more cities around the world are coming to understand the importance of TOPPs (Tourism Oriented Policing/ Protection Services) units and throughout the county tourism officials are beginning to understand that a lack of security means the death of their industry. This understanding is seen in the ever increasingly popularity and attendance at tourism security conferences in such places at Las Vegas, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic and Bogota, Colombia. The negative side of the security situation is that many police departments are facing economic challenges resulting in cutbacks in the number of officers able to care for locals and visitors alike As in any year, travel and tourism face some perennial challenges. Among these are: Good customer service goes a long way in solving many problems. You may not be able to change the world, but how you deal with the world impacts your bottom line. Promote customer service, let people know that you care and rather than getting angry find ways to accomplish the same goal with a smile on your face. Remember that brilliant results come about when you realize that the traveler is not your enemy but your customer! Keep prices as low as possible. No one has to take a vacation, provide travelers with good value and they will return. No one expects something for nothing, but no one wants to be taken advantage of either. Create travel bundles or packages. Often a package is less expensive and provides local businesses with an economic boost. Go beyond marketing. Too many travel and tourism professionals see themselves as nothing more than another form of marketers. Hospitality is a lot more than mere marketing. If you see a problem fix it rather than try to explain it away. Brilliant results come about when we show others that travel and tourism is all about creating positive memories that will last a lifetime.
Good customer service goes a long way in solving many problems. You may not be able Hotels. In 2012 to change the world, but how you hotels were a mixed bag. In deal with the world impacts the USA customers continue to express greater satisfaction with your bottom line.
many hotels, however some hotels have begun to use an airline model in which almost everything is extra. European and Latin American hotels have not done a good job of price containment and both Europe and Latin America have become increasingly expensive to visit due to high lodging costs. One major problem is the need to increase free wireless service. This need is especially important both for the business traveller and for those switching from laptop computers to electronic tablets. An increasing number of hotels have found ways to work with travelers’ schedules so that travelers no longer have to deal with the challenges of late check-ins and early check-outs.
As in 2011, the restaurant component of the travel and tourism industry in 2012 has had to face numerous challenges. Due to rapidly rising food costs around the world restaurateurs have had to show great dexterity in maintaining menu prices, dealing with food contamination and an ever more food conscious public. The fast food industry also had to deal with social www.brilliantpublishing.com
December 2012 • Brilliant Results 19
Marketing TIPs By: John Tschohl
HOW DO YOU RATE? How Do You Impact Your Employees and Their Productivity? In a recent
survey, workplace expert Michelle McQuaid found that 65 percent of workers in the United States would be happier if they had a boss who recognized their good work. On the other hand, only 35 percent of those surveyed said they would be happier if they got a raise. McQuaid also has found that bosses can affect employees’ health by wearing down their immune systems and “leaving us at risk of more colds, diseases, strokes, and even heart attacks” and can make employees so anxious and stressed that they don’t perform well at work. “We also take our bad mood home to the people who love us most and wind up damaging our relationships,” she writes. Thirty-one percent of the respondents to McQuaid’s survey said they don’t feel their bosses appreciate them, and only 38 percent said their bosses are doing a good job. How would your employees rate you as a boss? Are you responsible for poor-performing employees? Are you costing your company money because your employees leave? It might be time to take a good, hard look at how you manage—and treat—your people. Do you coach and nurture your employees? This is critical, if you want to develop employees who not only will be high performers—but who will make you look good in the process. Think of yourself as the coach of your favorite NFL football team. You wouldn’t expect your players to take the field every week without your guidance
20 Brilliant Results
• December 2012
and go on to win the Super Bowl, so why would you expect your employees to come to work every day and perform at their highest levels? Tell them what you need them to do, give them the tools to do it, and watch them rise to the occasion. Do you treat your employees with respect? We’ve all seen—and many of us have worked for—bosses who rant and rave and expect their tirades to motivate their employees to perform at higher levels. If anything, the result is the opposite. Don’t kid yourself; your employees can sabotage your career by making you look bad. On the other hand, if you treat your employees with respect, they will respect you and will work hard to earn your approval. Do you praise your employees? Nothing will motivate your employees to do well more than praise, particularly public praise. It’s no secret that we all crave recognition, whether we are earning minimum wage or are at the senior executive level. When you praise your employees, you are letting them know you appreciate them and, when they feel appreciated, they will do whatever it takes to meet—and exceed—your expectations. Simply put, praise will drive performance. Do you give your employees feedback on a regular basis? We all need to have benchmarks, some way of tracking how we are doing. Feedback is one way of doing so. Employees want some type of report card, something that lets them know how they are performing and that helps them to build on their strengths and improve their weaknesses. Annual performance reviews are fine and usually are conducted only as an assessment on which to base a pay increase, but they do nothing to help employees improve their performance. Start the New Year out by making a commitment to yourself—and to your employees—that you will do everything in your power to become a better boss. You will be surprised at the results: increased productivity, decreased turnover, and a much more pleasant work environment—for you and your employees.
The Harsh Realities of Lead Follow-up
By: BARRY SISKIND
In my last
article titled “Where did the trade show profits go”, I referred to a recent research study by the Centre for Exhibition Industry Research called “Exhibitor Sales Lead Capture and Follow-up Practice Trends.” 1 The research was the result of interviews conducted in June 2012 with 198 exhibitors. The findings highlight a problem that has plagued exhibitors for decades – how to get measurable results from the show investment. The first part of the report dealt with methods of capturing lead information. A large number of exhibiting companies interviewed used a lead retrieval system offered by exhibition management or a paper based lead form to capture contact information and product details. Yet, less than thirty percent of their booth staff asked for additional information such as demographics or other lead qualifying criteria. The second part of the study focused on the issue which goes to the heart of every exhibitor – their return on objective and turning leads into sales through follow up. When asked how your organization follows-up on sales leads generated at exhibitions, the response was as follows: 64% - E-mail with information addressing the lead’s specific product or service concerns
59% - Phone call addressing product or service concerns 56% - E-mail with general product or service information 33% - In-person visit 32% - Phone call with general information 31% - Direct mail with general information 26% - Direct mail addressing specific product or service information What’s interesting is that two thirds of leads are relegated to non-face to face follow-up, that is either via e-mail or on the telephone. It clearly says that the face-to-face advantage gained at a trade show is less of an important concern after the show is over. When the follow-up is general rather than specific, what it says to the customer is that the time they spent at the booth really didn’t matter. The conversation they had with
your booth staff had no value…that the customer is now a number rather than a unique individual. How would you feel if you spent time explaining your situation to a sales rep and a week later received a brochure with general information? The other interesting finding in this report is when companies were asked about the lead tracking tools they used. The responses were: 17% -
Manual or Ad Hoc Process
3% - Excel spreadsheet 69% -
No answer/ no comment.
This last group who either had no answer or were unwilling to comment are worrisome. Does it mean that they simply don’t know? My guess is that it is. Without a formal system in place all the hard work at a trade show is for naught. This report begs the question; “Are exhibitors maximizing their investment in exhibitions?” I would suggest that the answer is “no”. In fact, to paraphrase the poker analogy, they are leaving money on the table.
The solution to the issue of follow- up is two fold: First companies must put a serious effort into planning their follow-up. This starts with formalized lead tracking systems whether it be an off-the-shelf CRM program or a customized customer care program. The second is to further the advances that have been made face to face at a trade show into a meaningful follow-up. This means to ensure that the human element is always present. An e-mail or text doesn’t replace the human voice or face. When valuable information has been collected at the show, use it to build customer engagement. Study after study has proven the value of a well-executed exhibition plan. If you are not getting the results you want then one place to look is how you are handling your leads. 1 CEIR report # SM 39.12
December 2012 • Brilliant Results 21
advice By: Dr. Barry Goldsmith
Tough Days It works almost every time though it can be hard to offer what’s left of your strength and energy when you are down. The truth is that you won’t change your mood by doing the same things over and over again. Yes, you deserve time to heal from an emotional loss, but too much time spent in that arena will take away from what you have left. Doing something, almost anything, that will help move you forward is the key to making your life a nice place to be once again. Perhaps one of the best things you can do when you’ve got a case of the blues is to do whatever you can to keep moving forward. When you run out of things to do in one area of your life, explore another and simply start doing something. Time on your hands may well lead you to dark thoughts and lower your energy. If you want to feel better (and you know you do), then you have to actually do something to make that happen and to change your circumstances as well as your state of mind. The choices are endless. You have your basics: exercise, running errands, doing stuff around the house, completing paperwork, and so on. Although I am a fan of meditation, when you are in this condition, a few minutes can be helpful, but it is not an activity you want to engage in for the entire day. It’s almost like napping away your troubles. Unless you take some action before trying to get in touch with yourself (or just escape by sleeping), you will wake up in the same emotional state. I think it also helps to focus action on the area you are stressing about. If you are lonely, then spend time going to events, meeting people, and even looking online for friends or someone who can be more to you. Don’t isolate yourself. You can only end the loneliness when you find a person or people to whom you can relate. If you are out of work and it’s depressing you, make finding a job your new career. Get up every day and get dressed like you are going to work, and then do your research, set up interviews, send resumes, and ask everyone you know if they have any leads for you. This is where you can be productive on the computer and utilize your network of friends and family to help you find something. There is a job out there for you. I know it’s frustrating, but you can find it. If you are not in the market for love or work, but you are still not as emotionally strong as you would like to be, you might want to do some volunteer work. You can support a cause or some people, doing what you can to make the world a better place. Please believe me when I tell you that you will feel better knowing you have made a contribution to the human race.
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• December 2012
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