Holistic Marketing Management, Volume 6, Issue 2, Year 2016

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Vol ume6, I s s ue2, Year201 6

TheodorVal ent i nPURCĂREA

Edi t ori al :Devel opi ng “Cust omer Engagement” Const ruct

Cos t el I l i uț ăNEGRI CEA I oanMat ei PURCĂREA

Engi neeri ng t he Di gi talTransf ormat i on ofMarket i ng


New Chal l enges f or B2B Market ers

Di anaSOCA

Rel at i onalMarket i ng i nt he New Servi ce Economy


The Lat estI ssue ofour Part ner Journal ,„Market i ng Sci ence and I nspi rat i ons” ,Vol .XI ,2016,Number 1, Comeni us Uni versi ty i n Brat i sl ava,Sl ovaki a

Editorial Board of “Holistic Marketing Management” (A refereed journal published four times annually by the School of Management-Marketing of the Romanian-American University) Editor-in-Chief Theodor Valentin PURCĂREA







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President of European Retail Academy; President of EuCVoT, Member of the Astana Economic Scientists Club; Former Managing Director EHI Retail Institute, Germany, Chairman of the Advisory Board of EuroShop, Chairman of the Board of the Orgainvent, Trustee of EHI Retail Institute at GLOBALG.A.P. President - Association of Global Management Studies (USA); Editor-in-Chief, Journal of Entrepreneurship and Sustainability Issues; Former Editor-in-Chief, Journal of Management Systems, USA; Australian Graduate School of Entrepreneurship, the Faculty of Business and Enterprise, Swinburne University of Technology; Member of France’s National Academy of Scientific Research (CNRS); Director - ESB International Teaching and Research Exchanges, Reutlingen University, Germany Professor of Food Marketing, Erivan K. Haub School of Business, Saint Joseph’s University Philadelphia, USA; Director, Institute of Food Products Marketing, Editor, Journal of Food Products Marketing Secretary General, International Association of the Distributive Trade, AIDA Brussels; Member of France’s Academy of Commercial Sciences; Doctor Honoris Causa of NUPSPA (SNSPA) Bucharest; Hall of Fame of the European Retail Academy, Honored Personality 2015 Internet Marketing Professor, College of Business, San Francisco State University, USA Professor of Strategy and Entrepreneurship, Research Area Leader, Oxford School of Hospitality Management, Faculty of Business, Oxford Brookes University, UK First MBA Director at the Rennes Graduate School of Business in France; Director of RAFME Research into Management Excellence; PhD (Cambridge), MBA (City, London) Faculty of International Economic Relations, University of Economics, Prague, Czech Republic University of Turin, Italy University of Belgrade, Yugoslavia Memorial University, Grenfell Campus, Corner Brook, Canada University of Lille 3, France Szent Istvan University, Hungary Comenius University in Bratislava, Slovakia Faculty of Business, Dublin Institute of Technology, Ireland Faculty of Economics, University of South Bohemia in Ceske Budejovice Deputy Head of Department of Business Economics, University of Economics and Management, Prague, Czech Republic 1

Norbert HAYDAM Constantin ROŞCA Hans ZWAGA Roxana CODITA Dumitru MIRON Valeriu IOAN-FRANC Iacob CĂTOIU Virgil BALAURE Gheorghe ORZAN Luigi DUMITRESCU Marius D. POP Petru FILIP

Ion VOICU SUCALA Virgil POPA Alexandru NEDELEA Olguța Anca ORZAN Ana-Maria PREDA Ovidiu FOLCUȚ Doinița CIOCÎRLAN Marius Dan DALOTĂ Mihai PAPUC Gheorghe ILIESCU Costel NEGRICEA Alexandru IONESCU Tudor EDU Olga POTECEA Oana PREDA Nicoleta DUMITRU Monica Paula RAȚIU Elisabeta Andreea BUDACIA

Faculty of Business, Marketing Department, Cape Peninsula University of Technology, South Africa President of Romanian Scientific Society of Management - SSMAR Kemi-Tornio University of Applied Sciences, Finland Technische Universität München, TUM School of Management Academy of Economic Studies in Bucharest National Institute for Economic Research, Romanian Academy; Romanian Marketing Association; Romanian Distribution Committee Academy of Economic Studies in Bucharest Academy of Economic Studies in Bucharest Academy of Economic Studies in Bucharest Lucian Blaga University of Sibiu Babes-Bolyai University, Cluj-Napoca Dimitrie Cantemir University, Bucharest Technical University of Cluj-Napoca, Management and Economic Engineering Department; University of Glasgow, UK, College of Social Sciences, School of Social & Political Sciences; Managing Editor, Review of Management and Economic Engineering Valahia University of Târgovişte Ştefan cel Mare University of Suceava Carol Davila University of Medicine and Pharmacy Bucharest Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University Romanian-American University

Associate Editors Diana SOCA Irina PURCĂREA Dan SMEDESCU Art Designer Director Alexandru BEJAN

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“Holistic Marketing Management” (A refereed journal published four times annually by the School of Management-Marketing of the Romanian-American University) Volume 6, Issue 2, Year 2016


Theodor Valentin PURCĂREA - Editorial: Developing “Customer Engagement” Construct ………4

Costel Iliuță NEGRICEA - Engineering the Digital Transformation of Marketing ………………......6 Ioan Matei PURCĂREA

Theodor PURCĂREA - New Challenges for B2B Marketers ………………………...........................15

Diana SOCA - Relational Marketing in the New Service Economy…………………………………….24

Theodor PURCĂREA - The Latest Issue of our Partner Journal, „Marketing Science and Inspirations”, Vol. XI, 2016, Number 1, Comenius University in Bratislava, Slovakia ……29

The responsibility for the contents of the scientific and the authenticity of the published materials and opinions expressed rests with the author.

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Editorial: Developing “Customer Engagement” Construct Marketing is a communication (dependent on understanding customer engagement lifecycle) strategy. Customer engagement is becoming increasingly important within the evolution of a continuous relationship built and driven with an open perspective from brands and customers who become active contributors to the success and growth of the brand itself. But engaging with customers involves first listening, then to engage, and engaging each individual customer, knowing him, understanding him, and examining him across offline and online channels. (Merritt, 2010) Four years ago, the valuable Journal of Marketing Theory and Practice confirmed that “Customer Engagement” (CE) – a component of “Relationship Marketing” (RM) – is a construct not yet fully developed in marketing. (Vivek , Beatty, & Morgan, 2012) The three distinguished authors argued that CE (a research priority of the Marketing Science Institute, 2006-2008, and 2010-2012) is “applicable to both offensive and defensive marketing strategies, aimed at attracting, building, maintaining, and enhancing relationships with potential and existing customers.” After explaining the existing conceptualizations of engagement and CE, the authors, presented the managerial perspective of CE (on the basis of in-depth interviews with a series of executives), the customer-driven perspective of CE (a second exploratory study aimed at consumers), the conceptual framework of CE, by defining (as the intensity of an individual’s participation in and connection with an organization’s offerings or organizational activities, which either the customer or the organization initiates) and delimiting the nature of CE (which may be manifested cognitively, affectively, behaviorally, or socially), then they discussed the relationship of CE with other important marketing constructs and so on. Their valuable research focused on CE from the customers’ perspective in order to give organizations a better understanding of what engages customers, and suggested the need to align researchers’ perception of the scope of engagement not only with existing customers but also with noncustomers and potential customers. They also did not forget to highlight that smart firms recognize that customers expect instantaneous responses to their inquiries in today’s instantaneous world. More recently, Ernan Roman, President of Ernan Roman Direct Marketing (inducted into the Marketing Hall of Fame based on the dramatic results companies achieved with the three Customer Experience methodologies he created: Voice of Customer Relationship Research, Integrated Direct Marketing, and Opt-in Marketing), showed how essential (and overlooked) is the post-purchase engagement, which drives brand loyalty and subsequent sales by reinforcing confidence in buying decisions. A customer wants to be acknowledged as a person and not just a transaction, and then will more than reciprocate with loyalty and purchases. (Roman, 2016) On the other hand, also recently published research (examining the effect of service context on CE, presenting propensity to engage as an attitudinal antecedent of customer loyalty behaviors) results in Services Marketing Quarterly revealed that: propensity to engage and Holistic Marketing Management


customer behaviors vary significantly among the contexts studied; there is a difference between the high involvement service (healthcare), and the low involvement service (retailing), in both contexts the majority of loyalty behaviors being correlated with customers’ propensity to engage. (Fernandes, and Esteves, 2016) In what concerns the above mentioned case of healthcare with high involvement service (where customers exhibit higher propensity to engage and show more favorable behaviors), it is worth mentioning that Saturday, June 4, 2016, at the Palace of Parliament, Nicolae Balcescu Hall, the “Communication between Doctor and Patient” Session of the Fourth Edition (“Interdisciplinary Perspectives”) of Carol Davila University of Medicine and Pharmacy Congress, Bucharest, took place. On this special occasion we approached the challenging topic “Creating the ideal patient experience”, (holisticmarketingmanagement.ro) among others underlining the importance of better understanding the virtuous cycle of patient and physician engagement, (Lee, Miller, Daniels, Paine, Gresh, Betz) showing that stronger relationships between patients and healthcare providers have enhanced the engagement and satisfaction of both groups. Theodor Valentin Purcărea Editor – in – Chief References Fernandes, T. and Esteves, F. - Customer Engagement and Loyalty: A Comparative Study Between Service Contexts, Services Marketing Quarterly, http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/15332969.2016.1154744, retrieved on 25.06.2016, from: https://repositorio-aberto.up.pt/bitstream/10216/83162/2/107440.pdf Lee, S.V., Miller, T., Daniels, C., Paine, M., Gresh, B., Betz, A.L. - Creating the Exceptional Patient Experience in One Academic Health System, Academic Medicine: March 2016, Volume 91, Issue 3, pp. 338–344, doi: 10.1097/ACM.0000000000001007, 2016 by the Association of American Medical Colleges Merritt, J. - The customer engagement lifecycle. Is this the map to customer understanding? Retrieved on 04.11.2014, from: http://www.mycustomer.com/topic/customer-intelligence/customer-engagement-lifecyclehow-it-drives-everything/106824 Roman, E. - Post-purchase Engagement is Essential… and Overlooked, Apr 21, 2016, retrieved on 25.04.2016, from: http://customerthink.com/post-purchase-engagement-is-essential-and-overlooked/?utm_source=subscriber Vivek , D.S., Beatty, E.S. & Morgan. M.R. (2012) Customer Engagement: Exploring Customer Relationships Beyond Purchase, Journal of Marketing Theory and Practice, 20:2, 122-146, retrieved on 23.11.2015, from: http://dx.doi.org/10.2753/MTP1069-6679200201 *** http://holisticmarketingmanagement.ro/creating-superior-patient-experience-a-balance-of-art-and-science/

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Engineering the Digital Transformation of Marketing Dr. Costel Iliuță NEGRICEA Ioan Matei PURCĂREA Abstract In full process of continuous identifying digital opportunities throughout the whole value chain, marketing must better understand the difference between change and transformation, integrating people, technology and best practices, considering the social interaction accelerated by social media, and the already set triggers of the digital transformation, achieving step by step better customer engagement and improving customer experience while integrating it across channels. Under the continuous pressure of improving their company’s digital marketing efforts by using the adequate digital marketing techniques, they must follow the trends, including the emergent ones, doing the right thing about them, integrating digital and traditional marketing, enhancing knowledge of their customers’ needs, wants and attitudes, achieving a complete customer view, and delivering real-time experiences accordingly. Keywords: Digital transformation; Digital marketing; Digital marketing techniques; Customer journey; Customer experience JEL Classification: L86; M15; M31; O33

Better understanding the difference between change and transformation

According to McKinsey’s representatives, (Booth, Mohr, and Peters, 2016) the value in digitization is greater than anyone predicted, this being already demonstrated by digital-forward sectors such as retail and financial services. As throughout the whole value chain digital opportunities can be identified (so as to improve operations and increase flexibility), companies must first identify the position they want to occupy on their digital terrain, then begin with the end user and work backward, digital transformations being dependent on adoption and usage. They also must set clear targets (requiring concrete budgets) for their digitization efforts (for instance, to earn a certain share of revenue through digital channels in a fixed amount of time). When it comes to the control or direction of digital transformation of marketing, it’s not so much what you do, it’s how you do, but it’s not easy. Because first of all companies have to try to better understand the difference (Ashkenas, 2015) between change (implementing finite initiatives, by executing a well-defined shift in the way things work) and transformation (beyond a defined change, by reinventing the organization and discovering a new or revised business Holistic Marketing Management


model based on a vision for the future; calling for a new set of cultural principles and a revised performance management approach). What presupposes execution, reinvention, discovery, and experimentation, that is why it’s not easy. Marketers need today to integrate people, technology and best practices, creating unbreakable bonds between their brands and customers, developing values-based personas, better interacting with customers on a one-to-one basis on social media, proving a better understanding of the direct link between customer experience and profitability. (Purcarea, 2015) Indeed, being in sync and ready to meet customers’ needs is a continuous challenge today when the marketplaces have shifted to digital, the bionic buyers (made stronger or more capable by special electronic devices) having immediate access to any type of information about any type of good or service at any time. ( Zhivago, 2016) An updated version of the well-known “the customer is always right” may be “the customer and the customer’s preferred time and channel of engagement are always right”, (Schneider, 2016) as showed recently by vice-president of Growth at Conversocial (a social customer care solution). In the opinion of the Conversocial’s representative, social media is enabling and facilitating relationships on a massive scale, accelerating social interaction, and in the wake of social-based customer care the new standard is “VSAT” (Very Satisfied), beyond the familiar metrics CSAT (Customer Satisfaction Score, indicating how satisfied your current customers are with a good or service), what better shows the shift from response to resolution and from interaction to delight (customers are delighted by prompt, friendly, real-talk, productive experiences). It is significant that 42% of people – according to American Express Global Customer Service Barometer, cited within this context – will tell their friends about a good customer experience on social, while 53% will talk about a bad one. Triggers of digital transformation along the whole value chain. Engaging and delivering strong content accordingly

Apple, Facebook, Google, Amazon, Netflix, Tesla, Uber, and Airbnb, for example, are just some significant buzzword names in today’s digital marketing landscape. On the other hand, the changing customer demands, the new or changed competition, and the technological advances could be already considered a set triggers of this digital transformation, (Wieberneit, 2016) which continuously provides the business with a competitive edge, while going step by step (starting with small initiatives that deliver measurable gains) on the business way of gaining efficiency, achieving better customer engagement and improving customer experience. And this transformation must support business flexibility and agility, so as to deliver benefits by: having a customer centric strategy (focusing on customer experience throughout the business); designing a digital transformation strategy; positioning IT as an enabler of the business (and preventing this way isolated departmental point solutions); thinking big, and acting small Holistic Marketing Management


(measuring, creating a roadmap and a plan revised frequently taking into account business and IT priorities, implementing tactical priorities while following the overall strategy); delivering often. In retail business, for instance, as customers’ engagement is not so simple today (because consumers are distracted from every angle with numerous digital offers and propositions), retailers are challenged to develop the right forward-looking digital transformation strategy, better understanding their customers, offering them the “right thing” so as to keep their attention. One of the approaches working best is the digital storytelling based on strong content (delivered in the short form many digital natives demand), downloadable apps, ecosystems of financial rewards for those influencers posting popular content, and so on. (Lister, 2016) But before adjusting digital content workflows to support new propositions it is essential that brands take the time to listen, understand, respond to and then validate their customer/consumer/user needs. That is why the Chief Digital Officer of Ness Software Engineering Services (a provider of custom software product engineering services) recommends the following “journey”: respond to micro-interactions (the key to starting two-way digital communication between the retailer and their customers); boost company’s street cred with consumer-generated content (enhancing the perception of authenticity around companies’ content by encouraging sharing viral videos with brand moments in non-staged environments); embrace the wheel (scrolling as a natural way to discover more); show me you know me (rather than hide it now and trick me later – confirming honesty in the interactions with consumers); incorporate new technologies and features (humanizing and personalizing the interaction in all Omni channel touchpoints, learning from the usage patterns of the customers through their journey of discovery, impulse, purchase and sharing). One very good example of leader in this kind of approach is the case of Starbucks, which added in April in the U.S. 280000 new “Rewards” members during one week. The most effective digital marketing tactics and challenges for enterprise-level company

According to a recent report (Nanji, 2016) from Act-On Software and Ascend2 (based on data from a survey of 73 owners, partners, and C-level executives at companies in the U.S., 68% B2B-focused, 15% B2C, 16% mixed), respondents (business leaders) say that their company’s digital marketing efforts are: somewhat or very successful - 78% ; somewhat successful - 56%; very successful - 22%; not successful - 22%. Other findings looked at: effectiveness (58% of respondents say the effectiveness of their company’s digital marketing efforts is increasing marginally over time; top tactics (email - 60% list as a top channel, and websites - 60%); challenges (an inadequate budget - 47%, a lack of internal skills/training - 44%, and a lack of an effective strategy - 44%). Always interested to enhance his thinking on marketing innovation, the experimented Dave Chaffey asked readers (within the framework of a poll launched in the Autumn of 2015) to give their views on which digital marketing techniques will matter most to their businesses in Holistic Marketing Management


2016, and received over 1500 answers. Survey results (as of 8 February 2016) showed the following situations (in alphabetical order): Big Data (including market and customer insight and predictive analytics) – 17% of respondents; content marketing – 22%; Communities (branded niche or vertical communities) – 3%; conversion rate optimization (CRO) / improving website experiences – 5%; Display (banners on publishers, ad networks social media including retargeting and programmatic) – 2%; Internet of Things (IoT) marketing applications – 4%; Marketing Automation (including CRM, behavioral Email marketing and web personalization) – 13%; Mobile marketing (mobile advertising, site development and apps) – 12%; Paid search marketing, e.g. Google AdWords Pay Per Click Online PR (including influencer outreach) – 2%; Partnerships including affiliate and co-marketing – 1%; Search Engine Optimization (SEO) S – 3%; Social media marketing including Social CRM and Social Customer Care – 8%; Wearables (e.g. Apple Watch, activity trackers, augmented reality) – 6%. (Chaffey, 2016) Within this context, Chaffey underlined some significant trends within the management of marketing today: increasing complexity of the purchase decision (considering the customer journeys across multiple devices and through time; the huge influence of online channels and of researching online accordingly); increasing mobile usage (reaching your audience through mobile search or display; reviewing the new mobile ad formats etc.); digital transformation: from “digital silos” to integrated teams (thinking beyond organizational silos; the need of customer journey engineers knowing how to translate abundance of insights on customers into actions; also considering both the reality that many businesses are an early stage of adopting digital marketing techniques, and the necessary perspective of a “Digital Centre of Excellence”); the rise of the Chief Marketing Technologist (the shift in control of marketing technology from IT and Sales to Marketing); the challenge of integrating digital and traditional marketing. These are the necessary steps in the opinion of Chaffey: “start by setting goals for digital marketing, setting an integrated digital strategy and bringing in specialist digital marketing skills, reskilling existing marketers, then integrate digital to the heart of strategy, investment and marketing campaigns… timely updating about consumer and customer who are “requirement”, and not anymore a “need”… profit gearing will be the moto, but gain strategically, through communication and studying them.” Answering to a comment, Chaffey concluded that the emerging trends of digital marketing (search, mobile, social, display and video) will dominate across industries, leading to proven ROI over any other marketing platforms. Besides the above mentioned study, it is worth mentioning another one – The 2016 Digital Marketer Survey – conducted by Experian Marketing Services in the end of Autumn of 2015 (November 3-23), responses being collected from 1190 marketers from Australia, Brazil, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Japan, New Zeeland, Singapore, Spain, Thailand, United Kingdom and United States. This survey results (Experian Marketing Services, 2015) showed that marketers struggle to truly know their customers’ needs, wants and attitudes because in our increasingly connected world customers expect real and authentic interactions with brands. Other challenges are: making messages relevant/contextual; making analytics Holistic Marketing Management


actionable; staying ahead of new marketing trends; overcoming internal silos to center programs on the customer; linking customer data across channels and devices; increasing visibility over competitors; accurately measuring and attributing the results of programs; coordinating campaigns across channels, and integrating multiple marketing technologies/platforms); enterprise marketers prioritize technology to better understand customers. And marketers’ top priorities for 2016 are: enhancing knowledge of customers’ needs, wants and attitudes (52%); integrating technology to automate, orchestrate and manage cross-channel customer interactions (43%); collecting, linking and managing data (42%); investing in tools so that can accurately track and allocate revenue to the appropriate marketing channels (40%); delivering real-time, contextually relevant experiences (38%); facilitating more alignment between the departments within organization to center focus around the consumer (38%); investing in analytics to optimize customer interactions (36%). An interesting result of this last study showed that 59% of the enterprise-level marketers surveyed work in marketing teams that are broken out by channel, meaning that different teams control CX for each channel (one marketer covers email, one covers mobile, another covers social and so on). Another interesting result revealed that in marketing departments one of the occurring changes is the addition of already happening responsibilities: collecting reviews and customer feedback (69%); customer service responses on social media (67%); operational emails, i.e., order confirmation, shipping alert (67%); integrating CX across channels, i.e., ensuring order history or shopping cart experiences stay the same in app or via website (60%); operational mobile messages, i.e., mobile boarding passes, shipping and delivery notifications (56%); loyalty program (56%); Call center (52%). Other findings showed that: in order to gain better access to information and insight around data, the Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) needs to work with a Chief Data Officer (CDO) providing easy access to prepared data for given marketing tasks; the ultimate goal is a complete customer view, which is more critical than ever before (81% of marketers reported having challenges achieving a single customer view, compared with 89% in 2015). And in order to remove the disconnects causing a disjointed customer journey, Matt Tippereiter, Product Strategy Director, Experian Marketing Services, recommends the following steps: asses current strategy, build identity profiles, get organizational buy-in, define value, and implement, test and expand.

Instead of a conclusion: from the digital marketing funnel, to looking at the journeys that will be affected digitally and bringing a right perspective Beyond the debate concerning the death of the traditional marketing funnel (within the context of the multi-faceted process than can start and stop in various parts of the funnel, given the numerous key entry and engagement points and possibilities), it is worth remembering the invitation made in March this year (Banner, 2016) to take a look at the image of a digital marketing funnel:

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Figure 1: The Digital Marketing Funnel Source: Banner, M. - Today's Digital Marketing Funnel (and How to Optimize Your Conversions), retrieved on 22.03.2016, from: http://www.marketingprofs.com/articles/2016/29582/todays-digital-marketing-funnel-and-howto-optimize-your-conversions?adref=nlt032216

The above mentioned invitation allowed us to recall that: • seven years ago, in June 2009, McKinsey’s representatives showed how marketers (always trying to reach consumers at the moments that most influence their decisions) should respond to the new customer journey, because of consumers’ moving outside the marketing funnel by changing the way they research and buy products; (Court, Elzinga, Mulder, and Vetvik) they pledged for the integration of the aligned elements of marketing (strategy, spending, channel management, and message) across the organization with the consumer journey undertake when he makes purchasing decisions, by achieving a comprehensive view of all customer-facing activities; which involves a better understanding of the full scope of the consumer decision journey, which goes beyond the traditional role of CMOs (brand building, advertisements, market research and so on), and also assuming realigning marketing with the current realities of consumer decision making, and building new marketing capabilities; • according to Genesys, (2014) a “Customer Journey” is the set of interactions a customer has with a business to complete different tasks (evaluating, onboarding, getting support, renewing a product or service and so on), while “Customer Journey Management” is: an Omni channel customer engagement strategy that takes an outside-in approach from the customer’s perspective to improve customer experience (CX) for the most important of your customer’s journeys; a subset of Customer Experience Management (CEM) which Gartner defines as “the practice of Holistic Marketing Management


designing and reacting to customer interactions to meet or exceed customer expectations and, thus, increase customer satisfaction, loyalty and advocacy;” in the opinion of Genesys, expressed at the end of 2014, companies that focus on journey optimization perform dramatically better, that is why is worth creating actionable next steps from journey insights: collect (identify customer and interactions across channels: Website, Voice, Chat, SMS, Back Office, Mobile App, Social), engage (analyze in real time to understand customer behavior, intent, engagement profile, opportunities etc.), optimize (drive personalized and proactive engagement based on customer context, business rules and predictive next best actions); • in the opinion of Accenture, also expressed in 2014, the “New Customer Journey” (accelerated by technology) is dynamic, accessible and continuous (nonstop customer model: capturing new dynamics), every customer being a digital customer (different customer: traditional, experimental, transitional, digital savvy; different intensity; different speed). Digital savvy customers make digital technology part of all dimensions in their life, mobile access being key. (Accenture, 2014) And as there are more mobile-only consumers than desktop-only consumers, (Jarsky, 2016) marketers will raise technology standards to close the mobile gap (as predicted in a Signal infographic). Taking into account the very important role of the customer/user, it is really challenging to look at the journeys that will be affected digitally and bring a perspective on what it really means to serve the customer/user, doing more for him, on the basis of both, feedback and data points about how customers are using something, getting faster and more directly to actual customer preferences and an understanding of customer behavior, as suggested by McKinsey’s representatives. (Edelman, Dorner, and Seitz) It is the duty of marketers to connect the initial digital touch points of customer experience with the final ones, evaluating customer interaction with both, realigning marketing with the current identified realities of customer journey, and building new marketing capabilities, by integrating digital marketing with the traditional marketing, enhancing knowledge of customers’ needs, wants and attitudes, and integrating technology to automate, orchestrate and manage cross-channel customer interactions. References Ashkenas, R. - We Still Don’t Know the Difference Between Change and Transformation, January 15, 2015, retrieved on 17.06.2016, from: https://hbr.org/2015/01/we-still-dont-know-the-difference-betweenchange-and-transformation Banner, M. - Today's Digital Marketing Funnel (and How to Optimize Your Conversions), retrieved on 22.03.2016, from: http://www.marketingprofs.com/articles/2016/29582/todays-digital-marketing-funneland-how-to-optimize-your-conversions?adref=nlt032216

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Booth, A., Mohr, N., and Peters, P. - The digital utility: New opportunities and challenges, May 2016, retrieved on 12.05.2016, from: http://www.mckinsey.com/industries/electric-power-and-natural-gas/ourinsights/the-digital-utility-new-opportunities-and-challenges?cid=digistrat-eml-alt-mip-mck-oth-1605 Chaffey, D. - Marketing Trends for 2016 – Will we be in a post-digital era? May 13, 2016, retrieved on: 05.04.2016, from: http://www.smartinsights.com/managing-digital-marketing/marketinginnovation/marketing-trends-2016/ Court, D., Elzinga, D., Mulder, S. and Vetvik, O. J. - The consumer decision journey, McKinsey Quarterly, June 2009, retrieved on 16.01.2016, from: http://www.mckinsey.com/businessfunctions/marketing-and-sales/our-insights/the-consumer-decision-journey Edelman, D., Dorner, K. AND Seityz, B. - Achieving a digital state of mind, interview with David Edelman (a principal in McKinsey’s Boston office), and Karel Dorner (a principal in the Munich office), conducted by McKinsey Digital and Marketing & Sales practices’ Barr Seitz, retrieved on 13.02.2016, from: http://www.mckinsey.com/industries/high-tech/our-insights/achieving-a-digital-state-of-mind Jarsky, V. M. - How Digital Marketing Will Change in 2016 [Infographic], January 12, 2016, retrieved on 14.01.2016, from: http://www.marketingprofs.com/chirp/2016/29125/how-digital-marketing-will-changein-2016-infographic#ixzz3x2vjWsC4 Lister, M. - Using Digital Storytelling to Improve Customer Engagement, May 17, 2016, retrieved on 18.05.2016, from: http://www.mytotalretail.com/article/championing-digital-storytelling-theopportunities-for-retailers-and-how-to-measure-their-success/#utm_source=total-retailreport&utm_medium=newsletter&utm_campaign=2016-0517&utm_content=using+digital+storytelling+to+improve+customer+engagement-3 Nanji, A. - How Business Leaders View Digital Marketing, May 3, 2016, retrieved on 04.05.2016, from: http://www.marketingprofs.com/charts/2016/29846/how-business-leaders-view-digitalmarketing?adref=nlt050316 Purcarea, T., 2015. “Marketers, challenged to prove their new skills within the context of the actual trends,” Holistic Marketing Management, vol. 5(4), pp. 28-35. Schneider, M. - Why You Need to Revamp the Customer Experience for Social Consumers, June 16, 2016, retrieved on 16.06.2016, from: http://www.marketingprofs.com/opinions/2016/30116/why-youneed-to-revamp-the-customer-experience-for-socialconsumers?adref=nlt061616http://www.marketingprofs.com/opinions/2016/30116/why-you-need-torevamp-the-customer-experience-for-social-consumers?adref=nlt061616 Wieberneit, T. - Digital Transformation. Heck, YES! But why? May 1, 2016, retrieved on 02.05.2016, from: http://customerthink.com/digital-transformation-heck-yes-but-why/ Zhivago, K. - Marketing to Today's Bionic Buyer, PRO Seminar MarketingProfs, Jun 9, 2016, http://www.marketingprofs.com/marketing/onlineseminars/966?adref=nlsem966&utm_source=mpt&utm_medium=prospot&utm_campaign=pro&utm_ter m=sales&utm_content=sem Holistic Marketing Management


*** http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/bionic *** The 2016 Digital Marketer, retrieved on 22.04.2016, from: http://www.experian.com/assets/marketing-services/p/2016-digital-marketer.pdf *** Journey Mapping eBook: An Outside-in Approach to Delivering Great Customer Experiences, December 2014, retrieved 16.01.2016, from: http://www.genesys.com/about-genesys/resources/journeymapping-an-outside-in-approach-to-delivering-great-customerexperiences?utm_medium=social&utm_source=blog&utm_campaign=ebook *** Customer 2020: Are You Future-Ready or Reliving the Past? Ten Years of Accenture Research Highlights Real Opportunities for Providers to Better Meet Customers’ Steadily Rising Expectations, 2014 Accenture, Accenture-Customer-2020-Future-Ready-Reliving-Past.pdf

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New Challenges for B2B Marketers Theodor Purcărea Abstract There is a real challenge in relation to B2B higher customers’ engagement, B2B companies failing to engage a significant percentage of their customer base, organizational infrastructure and culture representing major weaknesses. Now it’s time to rethink the B2B buyer’s journey, better understanding the ways of communication, and the practical tips on what and how to segment, developing content with clear segments in mind, and using personalization as an embedded function within the marketing department. Each relevant interaction must be done at scale, capitalizing on the abundance of data in order to make B2B marketing relevant to the accounts, clarifying how and why B2B prospects choose to buy, and what can be done to facilitate prospects buying decision process. B2B sellers must provide consistent content on each channel, prioritizing leads from inbound channels, never separating leads and contacts, and aligning marketing and sales, building the content marketing strategy around business outcomes. Keywords: B2B Marketing; B2B Buyer’s Journey; Segmentation; Personalization; Marketing and Sales Alignment JEL Classification: M31; D83

The challenge of B2B higher customers’ engagement Five years ago, McKinsey’s representatives showed that in order to orchestrate customer engagement (engagement being a conversation going beyond managing the experience at touch points to include all the ways companies motivate customers to invest in an ongoing relationship with a product or brand) for the entire organization the marketing function is best placed. But to act this way a company must be able to influence touch points it doesn’t directly control, the spectrum of organizational choices being broader than ever within the context of the absence of solid return-on-investment data. Until the companies will evolve the full set of processes and structures needed to manage customer engagement across the whole organization, McKinsey’s representatives recommended five steps to move in the right direction: hold a customerengagement summit; create a customer-engagement council; appoint a “chief content officer”; create a “listening center”; challenge your total customer-engagement budget. (French, LaBerge, and Magill) Two years ago, two writers and editors at Gallup reminded us that: customer engagement (described by Gallup as a customer’s emotional or psychological attachment to a brand, product, or company) is the definitive predictor of business growth; as simply measuring customer engagement is not enough, leaders must take action by focusing on sustainable change management tactics, and blending customer and employee strategies for optimal performance. Holistic Marketing Management


(Sorenson and Adkins) At the end of February 2016, the Managing Director of Bsquared Consulting (a company specialized in helping organizations improve their B2B customer engagement and loyalty) underlined that according to a recent Gallup report (conducted over five years and based on responses from over one hundred thousand people), B2B companies are failing to engage 70% of their customer base, these findings completely harmonizes with the research conducted by Bsquared which showed that only 8% of B2B companies have reached full “maturity” in their customer engagement. (Brickle, 2016) Bsquared research also showed that the major weaknesses lie in the organizational infrastructure and culture. The above mentioned Gallup report also showed that B2B customers with high customer engagement achieve: 50% higher revenue/sales, 34% higher profitability, 55% higher share of wallet. Allow us to remember within this framework (896 comments) the very interesting comments made by the well-known Michael Lowenstein, who highlighted another factor contributing to low engagement, arguing that much of B2B customer decision-making is completed before the buyer and seller ever interact, and this because of: broad availability of content; time constraints on the purchaser; contact limitations and restrictions imposed by groups such as procurement department, purchasers controlling the buying and relationship processes. Brickle answered that it would be better that vendors talk to the end user, the decision maker and the budget holder. A month before this last opinion expressed above, and in the same day, (Ryan, 2016) we find out that: according to three statistics (represented on a slide by a conference speaker as shown in the photo posted by Daniel Heimlich on his LinkedIn page), 74% of B2B buyers conduct more than half of their research online before talking to a salesperson (Forrester Research), 75% of B2B buyers use social media to research vendors (IDC), while 90% of B2B buyers say they never respond to cold outreach (Harvard Business Review); according to LinkedIn’s new eBook, “Rethink the B2B Buyer’s Journey”, marketers must rethink many of the ways they communicate with their customers and how they align with their colleagues in sales, six key takeaways being recommended: prioritize delivering authentic and helpful knowledge your prospects crave; strive to reach the entire buying team, not just the key decision maker; deliver a full range of content, from product demos to case studies to thought leadership; leverage social media through the entire buying process; marketing and sales should align on a broader definition of nurturing – beyond classic relationship building; deploy sales technology to drive better sales and marketing alignment. (Callahan, 2016)

B2B marketers and a key to demand generation According to the opinion expressed by the founder and CEO of Openprise (a data automation SaaS company), segmentation is very important for B2B marketers whose companies already invested in CRM (customer relationship management) and MAP (marketing automation platform) and are capturing leads and running campaigns, (King, 2016) segmentation being the foundation of the company’s: ideal customer profile and target accounts lists; account-based Holistic Marketing Management


marketing – ABM, by finding gaps in account penetration and coverage; targeted campaigns and personalized engagements, by good segmentation; easier suppression, by knowing whom not to target. Within this approach, there are four practical tips on what and how to segment: job level segmentation (which reveals the role a lead plays in the buying process, a person’s role in the buying process depending on how a job title translates to job level, and on the product sold), by creating customized segmentation logic that fits company’s business; job function, by identifying the lead’s job function (finance, sales, IT) and role in the buying process, and using fine-grain segmentation for targeted job functions; meaningful company size (which is typically measured using annual revenue or number of employees), size range definition being unique to company’s business; industry (company’s marketing strategy should always have an industry focus), by remapping the standard and third-party industry data to company’s custom list. The founder and CEO of Openprise pledge for segmenting with a data automation tool (built for marketing and sales, not IT, and easy to customize), considering logic and reference data (job title, company revenue, number of employees, and industry), and transforming raw data into segmented data in a scalable and manageable manner.

B2B marketers and the challenge of personalization as an embedded function within the marketing department Doing personalization is not simple, presupposing more highly targeted content and a well-examined buyer’s journey, so as to drive prospects to convert faster. That is why many companies are using the Crawl Walk Run project methodology, (Eustace, 2016) beyond the fact that there are opinions considering it an antiquated approach. (Miller, 2016) There is a wellknown mantra (“Let’s crawl before we walk, let’s walk before we run”), and also well-known evolutions (such as the “Crawl Walk Run Fly” approach used, for example, to social media by Edelman. (Kelley, 2015) The founder and CEO of Get Smart Content - a software provider that enables brands to personalize content across channels – partnering with MarketingProfs on a poll to understand what B2B marketers are doing today around personalization – made reference to Harvard Business Review arguing that personalization can deliver 5X to 8X the ROI on marketing spend and lift sales by 10% or more. (Eustace, 2016) Poll findings showed that: 71% of B2B marketing organizations are personalizing emails based on audience; 32% consider the growing opportunity around personalizing content on the website; 29% have linked two marketing platforms and 24% have linked three marketing platforms to integrate data (in the general context of accessing audience data to segment it within marketing automation platforms, CRM platforms, website analytics platforms, data-management platforms, and content management platforms); the critical areas for a successful personalization program are: strategy, leadership, data, content personalization, measurement, and learning. And in order to help B2Bs understand the initiatives and deliverables in each phase of personalization maturity, a maturity model was developed Holistic Marketing Management


showing where B2Bs are against their peers and what is needed to get to the next stage: awareness, connected, targeted, and optimized (when content is developed with clear segments in mind, personalization becoming an embedded function within the marketing department).

The new B2B marketing leaders, digitally savvy and understanding the new consumer. Facing the fundamental challenge of any marketing organization The Agenda of “B2B Engagement Fest”, June 30 2016 (a day of challenging upcoming webinars) announced a focus on sharing techniques – for driving engagement and building customer relationships at every stage of the buying cycle – by special invitees, such as Mitch Joel (“Algorhythm – The Pulse of Creativity, Data, and the Future of Brands”) Digital Marketing Expert, Bestselling Author of “Ctrl Alt Delete” and President at Mirum. The introduction to the delivery of the above mentioned topic underlines that today’s world is challenging marketing teams like never before (digital transformation is imperative, disruption being everywhere), and facing the new consumer (much more efficient at buying) the new B2B marketing leaders are both digitally savvy and understanding this new consumer. (pardot.com) Allow us to remember some recommendations of the President at Mirum (Zalcmanis-Lai, 2016) made on different occasions: the biggest paradigm in marketing is to look at what data do you need to get the result you want; if you want to be agile, you have to be live in the present; as the real genuine community are more influencer-driven than mass-driven, don’t try to build community, build something shareable; to keep pace with digital marketing brands have to follow some steps of analysis: value, more life, more evergreen, then paid channels to push it out (really quality with a bit of quantity); the best business book to start thinking more progressively (Joel, 2016) is “Linchpin: Are You Indispensable?” by Seth Godin (Publisher: Portfolio; 1 edition, April 26, 2011). Within this framework let us remember “THE LINCHPIN MANIFESTO”: (sethgodin.typepad.com) “I am an artist. • I take initiative • I do the work, not the job. • Without critics, there is no art. • I am a Linchpin. I am not easily replaced… I make it happen. Every day. • Every interaction is an opportunity to make a connection… The future depends on choices I make now. • I own the means of production - the system isn’t as important as my contribution to it… I know yesterday’s innovation is today’s standard… I donate energy and risk to the cause. • I turn charisma into leadership. • The work matters. • Go. Make something happen.” Other two special invitees at “B2B Engagement Fest” are Mathew Sweezey, Principal of Marketing Insights Salesforce Pardot (“How to Rock B2B Engagement in the Age of the Customer”), and Kyle Coleman, Sr. Product Manager Salesforce Pardot (“Discover the Power of Engagement Studio: Build. Visualize. Improve”). The introduction to the delivery of these topics shows that: in order to encourage engagement nurturing must be done correctly (playing a vital role), each interaction must be done at scale, being timely, personalized and relevant; only Holistic Marketing Management


consistent, personalized, and relevant engagement builds lasting relationships with customers, that is why B2B marketers need a new solution (such as Pardot’s “Engagement Studio”) allowing to design, test, and measure engagement programs that adapt to buyer behavior. We saw above that Mitch Joel argued that the biggest paradigm in marketing is to look at what data you need to get the result you want. Ten days after this, Everstring argued that with the new predictive marketing (the new generation of predictive marketing platforms help to do much more compared to the previous generation of predictive marketing solutions focused on scoring and prioritizing the database), leveraging data becomes an actionable way to look at the entire business of sales and marketing. (everstring.com) Everstring explained in the very interesting new eBook the three core impacts of predictive marketing (performance, growth, and alignment), and how to use data to activate the relationship between company and its addressable market, taking into account that the fundamental challenge of any marketing organization is how to identify and capture the right audience and how can the marketing organization effectively communicate to this audience. They explored the different strategies (segmented email nurturing, multi-channel demand acceleration, account-based marketing, personalization, new market expansion) that will be affected by these above mentioned core impacts, highlighting the opportunity (with new predictive marketing) of capitalizing on the abundance of data in order to make companies’ marketing relevant to the accounts that matter at every stage of the funnel.

Understanding B2B prospect’s decision process and criteria. The role of predictive lead scoring, and the habits of highly effective B2B marketing organizations The founder of UK-based Inflexion-Point (which is applying a systematic, evidencebased approach to help B2B clients generate customer value, eliminate wasted effort and improve marketing and sales performance; its clients being involved in lengthy, high-value, complex B2B sales processes that involve multiple stakeholders) focused recently on understanding how and why B2B prospects choose to buy, and what can be done to facilitate prospects buying decision process. In his opinion, there is a real need to understand (even from a very early stage in the sales conversation): in the first place what caused the prospect to start searching for a solution; how would prospects characterize the issue (if this is it a tangible pain or opportunity, or are they simply curious), the symptoms of the issue, and the consequences of the issue; who else is affected and how; have prospects previously tried to address the issue and if so, how and with what results; whether prospects already have a vision of a solution, and if so what it looks like; whether prospects have already identified potential solution options, and is so, what they are; whether a formal budget has been established for the project and if so, how much and over what timeframe; how the issue under consideration ranks against the organizations “must do” priority list; how decisions like these are typically made in prospects’ organization, and who typically gets involved (being necessary to identify the mobilisers within the decision team); how does B2B buyer organization go about choosing between projects and prioritizing Holistic Marketing Management


which ones get funded first. He underlined the very high risk of failure if the sales people pursue opportunities and commit company resources without knowing the above mentioned things. A recent research conducted by Forrester Consulting (and commissioned by Accenture and SAP Hybris) showed that the most popular channel for B2B purchases is online, some 38% of buyers using exclusively digital channels, and 32% mixing online and offline channels, while 44% of those buyers are making purchases via Web, mobile, or tablet more than half of the time. That is why B2B sellers must provide consistent content on each channel. (Fisher, 2016) It is also worth taking into account the opinion (Gray, 2016) expressed by the founder and CEO of LeadMD (a company with a vision to transform marketing via the use of marketing automation and CRM solutions): buyer life cycles don’t have the same different lengths, and within the context of the new data revolution which has combined structured data with unstructured data (information you can’t glean by combing through a company’s website), cutting-edge B2Bs are scrapping linear prediction models in favor of real-time insights that start at a desired outcome and work backwards (considering all variables along the way). B2B technology marketers, according to a new Gartner research report, must have some form of predictive lead scoring to prioritize leads from inbound channels (predictive analytics being considered a must-employ tactic helping to cut down on wasteful content from company’s marketing team and to find ideal prospects for company’s product). In the same time it is important to show that: ▪ according to a recent report (Nanji, 2016) from Altify and IDD Consult (based on data from a survey of 1245 buyers and sellers in 66 countries who work primarily for B2B companies), B2B Sales Meetings are a valuable part of the B2B purchase process – from the viewpoint of vendors (and 56% of them think they add value to the purchase process most of the time), while buyers say most meetings are not valuable (and a third of them say vendors rarely or never add value, just 14% of them saying vendors always add value); ▪ also recently, (DeMonte, 2016) the head of Marketing at Reflektive (a real-time employee engagement and performance platform built for the modern workforce), stated that as long as a company sells into companies (B2B) and not individuals (B2C), leads and contacts should never be separated, and every single person/lead/name/contact in company’s database should be associated with an account (account-based marketing/ABM being a more focused and strategic method of both outbound and inbound marketing); to work together, marketing and sales need to talk in account-based language (having the same definition for an account); this kind of approach confirms the opinion expressed by Everstring that marketing and sales (their misalignment plaguing B2B organizations) really need to align so as to avoid impeding each other’s and company’s success (lack of alignment resulting in a disjointed buyer journey, losing track of leads when they’re hot for company’s business, and wasting time and effort for marketing team members and sales representatives), speaking in “accounts” being a fantastic place to start speaking the same language. (everstring.com) Holistic Marketing Management


Let’s also remember that the habits of highly effective B2B marketing organizations – according to “The 2016 B2B Benchmarks, Budgets and Trends” report from Content Marketing Institute and Marketing Profs – are strategy and communication. (Burney, 2015) On this point, B2B marketing organizations need: to build their content marketing strategy around business outcomes, lead generation (85%) and sales (84%) being the two most important goals for B2B marketers across 2016; to report on ROI-focused metrics, not marketing activity; to invest in the social media basics (social media being the most-used content marketing tactic among B2B marketers, LinkedIn usage being nearly universal). On the other hand, it is worth mentioning that according to a recent report (Nanji, 2016) from LinkedIn (based on data from a survey of 6000 buyers, marketers, and salespeople at mid-sized to enterprise-level B2B companies in seven countries: US, Canada, UK, Australia, India, France, and Germany), the department most often involved in B2B buying decisions is IT (32%), followed by finance (31%) and business development (26%). As the number of company’s departments involved in B2B purchase decisions varies significantly by industry (for example, in the travel vertical 3,4 departments, in the manufacturing industry 4,6 departments, and so on), let us note that the respondents in the marketing and advertising industry say that the marketing department has the most influence on B2B purchase decisions, business development being second, followed by sales. Conclusions: How to better support B2B Buyer’s Journey with Content We have seen that B2B companies must be able to influence touch points it doesn’t directly control. As B2B buyer need to know what seller’s product has to offer, it is essential to initiate proper conversations and develop relationships earlier in the buying process, by using educational, entertaining, and useful content. Content, as Everstring (everstring.com) pointed out recently, is the foundation of any ABM strategy, allowing convincing about the impact B2B supplier’s product has beyond the technical implementation, and clarifying concerns about B2B supplier’s product specifically. On the other hand, at the level of the B2B supplier it has to be a clear picture of the alignment of marketing (marketers starting the conversation, marketing being responsible for one-to-many engagements with buyers) and sales (continuing that conversation within a one-tofew format). From the very beginning of the buyer’s journey (emarketer.com) it is the marketing department’s responsibility to build the two higher-funnel stages preceding purchase, awareness and consideration about a B2B supplier’s product specifically, while salespeople also need to understand the value that comes from those marketing conversations at the beginning of the buyer’s journey (salespeople owning purchasing, the bottom of the buyer’s journey funnel).


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Appolo, B. - How and Why Do B2B Prospects Buy? 11 Questions You Must Answer, Jun 9, 2016, RETRIEVED ON 15.06.2016, from: http://customerthink.com/how-and-why-do-our-prospects-buy-8questions-you-should-be-able-to-answer/ Brickle, R. - Survey finds only 29% of B2B customers are engaged – why I’m not surprised, Feb 23, 2016, retrieved on 25.02.2016, from: http://customerthink.com/survey-finds-only-29-of-b2b-customersare-engaged-why-im-not-surprised/ Burney, K. - The Top B2B Marketing Trends For 2016, October 7, 2015, retrieved on 05.05.2016, from: http://trackmaven.com/blog/2015/10/the-top-b2b-marketing-trends-for-2016/ Callahan, C. - Announcing the “Rethink the B2B Buyer’s Journey” eBook: 6 Takeaways for Marketers from New LinkedIn Research, January 21, 2016, retrieved on 25.01.2016, from: https://business.linkedin.com/marketing-solutions/blog/content-marketing-thought DeMonte, A. - Inbound vs. ABM? That's the Wrong Question, May 11, 2016, retrieved on 12.05.2016, from: http://www.marketingprofs.com/opinions/2016/29905/inbound-vs-abm-thats-the-wrongquestion?adref=nlt051116 Eustace, J. - A Helpful Model of the Four Stages of Personalization Maturity, June 2, 2016, retrieved on 03.06.2016, from: http://www.marketingprofs.com/opinions/2016/30001/a-helpful-model-of-the-fourstages-of-personalization-maturity?adref=nlt060216 Fisher, J. - B2B Buyers Expect an Omnichannel Experience From B2B Suppliers, May 26, 2016, retrieved on from: http://www.marketingprofs.com/opinions/2016/29981/b2b-buyers-expect-anomnichannel-experience-from-b2b-suppliers?adref=nlt052616 French, T., LaBerge, L., and Magill, P. - Five “no regrets” moves for superior customer engagement, Article McKinsey Quarterly, July 2012, retrieved on 22.06.2016, from: http://www.mckinsey.com/business-functions/marketing-and-sales/our-insights/five-no-regrets-movesfor-superior-customer-engagement Gray, J. - Predictive Analytics Has a Scaling Problem, and Bad Data Is to Blame, June 17, 2016, retrieved on 18.06.2016, from: http://www.marketingprofs.com/opinions/2016/30118/predictiveanalytics-has-a-scaling-problem-and-bad-data-is-to-blame?adref=nlt061716 Joel, M. - Dear Seth Godin, retrieved on 22.06.2016, from: http://www.twistimage.com/blog/archives/dear-seth-godin/ Kelley, B. - Flaws in the Crawl Walk Run Methodology, October 4, 2015, retrieved on 20.06.2016, from: http://www.innovationexcellence.com/blog/2015/10/04/the-flawed-crawl-walk-run-methodology/ King, E. - Four Practical Segmentation Tips for B2B Marketers, February 1, 2016, retrieved on 01.02.2016, from: http://www.marketingprofs.com/articles/2016/29267/four-practical-segmentation-tipsfor-b2b-marketers?adref=nlt020116 Miller, E. - Run Away From This Old School Marketing Approach, retrieved on 20.06.2016, from: http://www.monetate.com/blog/crawl-walk-and-run-away-from-this-old-school-approach/ Holistic Marketing Management


Nanji, A. - Are B2B Sales Meetings Useful? May 5, 2016, retrieved on 05.05.2016, from: http://www.marketingprofs.com/charts/2016/29860/are-b2b-sales-meetings-useful?adref=nlt050516 Nanji, A. - Which Departments Most Influence B2B Purchase Decisions? May 10, 2016, retrieved on 10.05.2016, from: http://www.marketingprofs.com/charts/2016/29871/which-departments-mostinfluence-b2b-purchase-decisions?adref=nlt051016 Ryan, C. - The Evolving Journey of the B2B Buyer, January 21, 2016, retrieved on 25.01.2016, from: https://greatb2bmarketing.com/b2b-buyer/evolving-journey-of-b2b-buyer/ Sorenson, S. and Adkins, A. - Why Customer Engagement Matters So Much Now, Business Journal, July 22, 2014, retrieved on 22.06.2016, from: http://www.gallup.com/businessjournal/172637/why-customerengagement-matters.aspx Zalcmanis-Lai, O. - 5 Marketing Tips from Mitch Joel, An Exclusive Interview, The Tite Report, June 10, 2016, retrieved on 22.06.2016, from: http://www.theartof.com/articles/5-marketing-tips-from-mitch-joelan-exclusive-interview-by-the-tite-report/ *** B2B Engagement Fest, June 30, retrieved on 22.06.2016, from: http://www.pardot.com/b2bengagement-fest-2016/ *** http://sethgodin.typepad.com/FILES/THELINCHPINMANIFESTO.PDF *** Everstring - The 3 Core Impacts of Predictive Marketing: How Predictive Activates Your Business to Grow, Perform, and Align, June 20, 2016, retrieved on 21.06.2016, from: http://resources.everstring.com/h/i/265915812-the-3-core-impacts-of-predictive-marketing-howpredictive-activates-your-business-to-grow-perform-and-align? *** Everstring - How to Overcome SALES AND MARKETING MISALIGNMENT, retrieved on 25.04.2016 from: http://pages.everstring.com/rs/246-GSV300/images/How%20to%20Overcome%20Sales%20and%20Marketing%20Misalignment.pdf *** Everstring - How to Create a Full-Funnel Content Strategy for Account-Based Marketing, Cheatsheet, retrieved on 23.06.2016, from: Demand_Generation_Success_Kit.pdf *** eMarketer - B2B Marketers Must Step Up to Support Sales, Jun 15, 2016, retrieved on 16.06.2016, from: http://www.emarketer.com/Article/B2B-Marketers-Must-Step-Up-SupportSales/1014085?ecid=NL1002

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Relational Marketing in the New Service Economy Diana SOCA Abstract The unprecedented development of the services, supported by the technological progress made by the 20th century to give birth to a new type of society which can be characterized as a “service economy” with traits different from those of the “industrial” development model. Under these conditions, relational marketing as philosophy and as instrument of running business is forced to adapt to these deep mutations. Key words: service economy, transactional marketing, relational marketing. JEL Classifications: L80; M31

Emphasizing the structural mutations The new service economy is characterized not only by the fact that service branches, such as financial services, telecommunications and transports, maintenance and engineering services develop without limits, but within the processing industry and even within agriculture, the majority of the functions fulfilled and of the activities performed implies service activities. With other words, we experience a horizontal integration of all productive activities. The services, developing, restructure almost all branches, fundamental links between the different sectors, as well as the economy in its entirety. Making a parallel between the two types of economy, we can better emphasize the structural mutations involved by the transition to an economy in which the service activities predominate. The implications of this transition are practically multidimensional, targeting products, markets, workplaces and professional training, international competition, specialization, way of life and standard of file. Thus, if in the industrial economy, the production process is considered to be completed at the moment when a product is available on the market, in the service economy the maximization of the combined products and services throughout their life cycle is targeted, operation which takes into account a series of costs before, during and after production. While the industrial economy assigns value preponderantly to the products existing under material aspect and which make the object of exchange (added exchange value), value in the service economy is closely connected to performance and to the real use of the products (material or not) integrated in a system (use value).

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While the production-consumption system of the industrial revolution was based on the rapid replacement of the goods ignoring the deterioration of the environment at the level of both finalities (depletion of the natural resources through production, including the high consumption of energy and water accompanying it, and the pollution, by accumulating waste after the goods’ period of use), in service economy functions a slow replacement system of goods, based on the extension of the product life-cycle on the basis of the 4 R – reuse, repair, recondition (using products or components used as source for new products), recycle (using waste as raw material available locally). By means of this system, the consumption and waste are reduced to half, while the use period doubles, thus ensuring a sustainable development, without restricting economic growth or social and technical progress. The essence of production in the industrial economy was the large series comprising millions of standardized, identical products. In service economy the essence of production is the small series of products fully or partially adapted to the requirements of customers, which calls for highly qualified labour and high research expenses. In industrial economy, the high level of the collaboration and interaction costs between the different components of a business on the added value chain determined an increase of the business vertical integration level, the most conclusive example being the large multinational conglomerates whose structure includes raw material producers, processing companies, assembling companies, distribution companies, companies providing post-sale services etc. In service economy, called by the specialists “digital economy”, the business models are based on the particularities offered by electronic connectivity with the other partners, which makes the cost-reduction potential to be enormous. In fact, the costs of supply or sale can be considerably reduced by using the Internet and the electronic trade because they: • provide rapid and real time access to a very wide range of potential suppliers • provide almost limitless access to a wide range of raw materials • allow the making of comparisons between the price and delivery conditions for each separate raw material and through bidding the optimum supply variant can be chosen • eliminate the effort to identify suppliers, including the costs related to negotiating contracts, their signing and running. • does not require the physical existence of a sales network (stores, warehouses), the sale being made online • does not require a sales force, thus reducing personnel costs Therefore, the main modality for increasing the quality and the consumer’s satisfaction degree is disaggregation and partnership with other organizations specialized in certain components on the value chain (suppliers, distributors, clients). It is what is called a rapid reaction system (manufacturing what is being sold and not producing on the basis of a market prediction which may differ, at a given time, from the real level of the demand). The performances obtained in comparison with the other competitors will depend on the quality of Holistic Marketing Management


the teamwork within the strategic network. At present, the competition no longer takes place between individual companies, but between strategic networks having as goal the amelioration of the relative efficiency of the supply systems of each competitor. For sellers and buyers together, in the industrial economy, information was a resource that was either hard to find or expensive, or both. With the development of the digital economy, information became abundant, easy to find and, not lastly, cheap. In the knowledge and information-based service economy, creativity, the degree of innovation, the intangible assets, as well as intellectual property, patents, licenses, brands constitute the main value sources. In industrial economy the development of new markets is extremely difficult. There are necessary years for the execution of the market studies, the construction of the production capacities, the creation of sales teams, the development of distribution networks etc. In the digital economy, markets can be created almost instantaneously, overnight, virtual channels can be used for the supply, promotion, sale and delivery of goods and services, the barriers against entering a market being practically as good as nonexistent. Relational marketing, a strategic orientation Philosophy and instrument of running business, the marketing of customer relations must adapt to the mutations in the economy. Thus, an evolution occurred from a transaction-focused marketing to a relationship-focused one. The relational marketing strongly developed after the years 1990’s connects the new type of consumer to the society, shows the sense of the act of purchasing by taking into consideration the client’s needs and expectations. The consumers become partners and the company must undertake long-term commitments to keep the relationship, by means of quality, services and innovation. Relational marketing represents a strategic orientation which emphasizes rather the keeping and improving of the current customers, rather than on attracting new ones. A parallel between the two types of social strategies highlights the following characteristics: Characterization of transactional marketing

Characterization of relational marketing

focus on the sales activity and of the focus on the post-sale activity and on acquisition of new customers increasing the fidelity of the existing customers increase of the market share on account of a a deep understanding and anticipation of the quantitative increase of the supply and of the customer’s long-term needs number of consumers brand monologue supported by advertising dialogue permanent with the customer, who is included in the purchasing act non-differentiating marketing personalized marketing market-oriented resource administration customer-oriented resource administration

Holistic Marketing Management


A customer-oriented marketing strategy means: • a dynamic relationship between the client and the company; • customized products suitable for the customer’s needs; • personalized and interactive promotion depending on the customers’ needs and wishes, by means of carefully prepared segmentation, a personalized message, a channel allowing the measurement and collection of feedback; • establishing the contact point with the customer as close and possible and depending on his/her options (sale and promotion performed online, by telephone, at the customer’s headquarters, through agents or specialized consultants); • quality assessed first of all in relation to the customers’ needs and wishes. The increase of the loyalty of customers towards a product, a brand or a company can be achieved by using the promotion policy or complex services, such as: offering guarantees for the product, making repairs and providing the spare parts, installing the products, the temporary replacement of the products during the repairing period, rapid or free delivery, prompt solving of complaints, an adequate working schedule (possibly non-stop), parking in the proximity, the creation of a pleasant ambiance, financial services (credits, exchange offices), travel agencies, friendliness of the staff, possibility to return the packaging by the client etc. The services not only lead to the formation of purchasing behavior based on a permanent collaboration between the seller and the buyer, to a good mutual knowledge and a high fidelity degree, by means of the specific utilities provided to each consumer, but they also represent a strong competitive instrument. The competitive advantage offered by the improvement of the level of services is more durable than the advantage generated by a price reduction. The marketing studies show that the companies with faithful customers have marketing costs approx. 5-6 times lower, compared to those focusing on attracting new customers. Thus, the implementation of relational marketing brings advantages both to the customers and to the companies. The advantages for the clients are related to their trust in the company, comfort, familiarity feelings and stable social relations which the customer gains vis-a-vis the company, which make little probable the change of the service supplier, even if the customer learns of the existence of a competitor offering higher quality or a lower price. The advantages for the organizations consisted in the increase of sales (studies revealed that loyal customers tend to buy increasingly more from the company with which they have durable relations), decrease of advertisement costs and other promotional costs necessary for attracting new clients, free promotion (satisfied, loyal customers will promote the company they used). Conclusions

Holistic Marketing Management


The development of relational marketing was due to the changes occurred in the coordinates of the international business environment during the last decades materialized in the emergence of new technologies and their impact on the development of innovative products and services, the intensification of competition in the context of a high degree of concentration of the capital and of increase of the number of mergers and strategic alliances at the global level, as well as of structural mutations regarding the transition towards an economy where the service activities are predominant. References Cetina, I. (coord.) - Marketingul serviciilor fundamente si domenii de specializare, Uranus Publishing House, Bucharest, 2009 Giarini, O., Stahel, W.R. - Limitele certitudinii, Impress Camro Publishing House, Bucharest, 1996 Purcarea, T., Ratiu, M. - Comportamentul consumatorului. O abordare de marketing, Carol Davila University Publishing House, Bucharest, 2007 Soca, D. - Piata mondiala a serviciilor, Universitara Publishing House, Bucharest, 2007

Holistic Marketing Management


The latest issue of our partner journal, „Marketing Science and Inspirations”, Vol. XI, 2016, Number 1, Comenius University in Bratislava, Slovakia Theodor PURCĂREA

JEL Classification: Y30

We are happy to receive by post the latest issue of our partner journal, „Marketing Science and Inspirations”, Vol. XI, 2016, Number 1. „Marketing Science and Inspirations” is a well-known academic journal addressed to academics and practitioners. The latest issue of this journal covers challenging topics in the marketing research field: “Neuromarketing. Introduction. Part II” (Magdalena Samuhelova, Lucia Simkova; the authors underline that neuromarketing has the potential to be exploited for the good of society and public information, but it can also be misused to promote the interests of companies or political groups); “Proposition of the blue ocean marketing strategies in collaboration with a partner” (Eva Holistic Marketing Management


Smolkova, Samuel Smolka; approaching the changes in relation to the blue ocean strategies, the authors point to the possibility of using non-traditional methods to penetrate into new market areas, to create new products and find customers who have never been addressed before); “Social marketing – a concept of marketing management” (Anna Mazurkiewicz-Pizlo, Wojciech Pizlo; the authors argue that every company using social marketing should focus on implementing its business objectives, creating value for customers, and bringing broader benefits to society as answer to society’s expectations, every such company meeting the challenge of increasing costs); “The deployment of the virtualization environment OpenStack in education. Part I” (Vincent Karovic, Peter Vesely, Frantisek Olsavsky; the authors show that OpenStack is a free open source software and platforms for cloud computing licensed under the Apache license, essential for the safety of the school information system being the separation of the sensitive systems from open networks and the learning environment; they selected four teaching subjects, arguing that the introduction of these innovations may affect the success of managerial and marketing skills and success of students).

The „Marketing Science and Inspirations” journal also includes other sections such as: “Marketing Briefs” (Pavel Strach – “Time is marketing: Holidays and other observances”); “Captured us” (“Czechs and advertising 2016”); “Reviews” (Peter Starchon – Peter, Stetka and Holistic Marketing Management


Stefan, Majtan, 2014. The reference framework for cross-cultural consumer”, Bratislava: Economist Publishers, 2014.146 S.; Dagmar Weberova – “Radomila, Soukalova: Marketing is a science of creativity”, Zlin: Radim Bacuvcik – Verbum, 2015.158 S.), “Dictionary of Useful Marketing Terms” (Dagmar Weberova). The Editor-in Chief of the „Marketing Science and Inspirations” journal is Professor Peter Starchon, Faculty of Management, Comenius University in Bratislava, Slovakia, who is also Member of the Editorial Boards of the “Holistic Marketing Management” Journal and of the “Romanian Distribution Committee Magazine”. It is always our pleasure to remember our meeting in Koln, Germany, in 2011, on the occasion of the working meeting of the European Retail Academy (ERA).

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