Why Some Channels Are More Convenient Than Others: A Convenience Quotient Analysis

That was the title of colleague James McQuivey’s track session here are Forrester’s Consumer Forum in Chicago.  For those unable to attend, here’s a quick synopsis of what James covered:

 

While attendees may think they have had enough of the term – and the concept of – “multi-channel,” the truth is that multi-channel has only just begun.  It’s not just in-person vs. phone vs. online.  The mobile channel is prominent today, and we’ve got new options coming, like connected TVs, that won’t emerge for another year or more.

 

James’s theme is this:  Your product or service is never more convenient than the channels through which people access it.  And convenience is bigger than you think.  It’s not a need or feature – it’s a measure of how well your features provide consumer benefits.  Regular readers of this blog will know that we at Forrester have captured the notion of convenience in the following equation

 

Convenience Quotient = Benefits – Barriers

 

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Welcome Augie Ray -- Our newest analyst supporting interactive marketers!

Christine Overby [Posted by Christine Overby]

I am thrilled to welcome Augie Ray to Forrester! Augie is coming aboard as a Senior Analyst supporting interactive marketers and focusing on Social Computing. He's starting on November 15 and will be based in Forrester's Foster City offices (Augie is relocating from Milwaukee and eagerly anticipating the warmer weather!).

I've been the hiring manager for nearly a dozen positions at Forrester, and I've come to recognize a particular feeling when I'm talking to a special applicant. Sure, there are lots of people with strong CVs and interviewing skills. But a great candidate brings ideas to life, and the interview becomes a fun gallop through the world of marketing themes, customer behavior, and the craft of writing. My first conversation with Augie was exactly that.

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Pizza Hut Embraces The New Marketing Reality (Live from Forrester Consumer Forum)

by Sean Corcoran

I'm here and live blogging from the Forrester 2009 Consumer Forum in Chicago. Bob Kraut, VP of Communications for Pizza Hut, is presenting how the brand used an innovative approach to digital marketing to adapt to a new and challenging consumer landscape.

Pizza Hut has been hit fairly hard in this economy as people cut back on much of their sit down dining in the recession. They also are fighting the same uphill battle as other marketers - the reality that consumers' media habits have been fragmented and reaching them in an engaging and effective way with scale is very difficult and very costly. In response to these realities, Pizza Hut had to be innovative in how they leveraged digital tools to reach and enable their consumers. They developed a four step strategy that included a lower priced menu items, more variety in the menu, more convenient and fulfilling customer access and finally to become part of the conversation online.

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Still Accessible: But Elsewhere

By Peter O'Neill

Pretty soon now, you will be noticing that I am no longer posting reports or blogs on the Vendor Strategy Professional pages. This does not mean that I have left the stage. It is just that I am assuming a new research focus and targeting my reports at a new role, one serviced within the Technology Product Marketing and Marketing pages. I will be building up research for one of my favorite marketing contributors, the Field Marketing Manager, that true marketing schizophrenic.

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New Roku boxes make the simple complex

Today Roku launched two new players to complement the original $99 Roku player. Perhaps somewhat obviously, the two new players come in at $79 and $129, allowing Roku to test whether there's price elasticity in this market. 

I'm not sure this was a necessary move. The cheaper box (called Roku SD), simply removes HD playback from the original Roku Player (now called Roku HD). The $129 version offers wireless-n wi-fi streaming to deliver dramatically better video quality. I don't personally need that since I hook up my Roku player -- which is in constant demand in my home -- via ethernet. (Yes, being a nerd has its advantages including a fully self-wired home that has over 24 ethernet ports in it.) So while I can see the value of the more expensive box for wi-fi users who have wireless-n routers (do you know if you do? betcha don't know), I think muddying the waters with 3 boxes instead of a maximum of 2 just feels like unnecessary complexity. A bit like Amazon announcing it would sell two versions of the Kindle in the US, one that's domestic only and one that can roam abroad, a decision doesn't appear likely to last very long.

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Introducing Emotional Experience Design

Ron-Rogowski  [Posted by Ron Rogowski]

In a world where users approach the Web with ever increasing expectations, a firm's Web site has become critical for building a company’s relationship with its customers. Today, the  Web site is often the first, and sometimes only, place customers interact with a company. Unfortunately, many sties offer lackluster experiences that leave an emotional void.

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Live From Summit On Customer Engagement 2009

Laura Ramos [Posted by Laura Ramos]

Last week, the Customer Strategy Group is
held its inaugural summit on customer engagement – an intimate,
executive conference designed for B2B marketers who manage customer
reference programs, advisory boards, and the emerging area of online
communities.  I spoke to about 75 marketers and sponsors about “Understanding the Value of Customer Engagement”.

In my most recent blog post at B2B Marketing POSTs, I look at what I learned from the morning keynote sessions.

Sharing Lead Management Market Insights with the DemandGen Report

Laura Ramos [Posted by Laura Ramos]

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Research Will Shape Your Multicultural Online Strategy

New Report: "How Chief Customer Experience Officers Gain Active Executive Support"

Megan Burns [Posted by Megan Burns]

 

I’m excited to announce the release of my latest report: “How Chief Customer Experience Officers Gain Active Executive Support.” Executive involvement is critical to the success of any customer experience transformation, but it’s hard to get. I interviewed several successful CC/EOs to find out how they got their peers on the leadership team on board.

Here are a few highlights from the report:

 

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