Just Published: The Forrester Wave: Cross-Channel Campaign Management, Q1 2012

Cross-channel campaign management (CCCM) tools face mounting pressure to evolve in the face of continuous, interactive, customer-led dialogue. CCCM capabilities have matured dramatically, but marketers often ask, “Are the applications resilient enough to meet the massive challenges marketing organizations face today?”

Forrester clients can see how much progress vendors have made in “The Forrester Wave™: Cross-Channel Campaign Management, Q1 2012”. We identified, researched, and scored 12 products from 11 providers: Alterian, Aprimo, ExactTarget, IBM, Infor, Neolane, Oracle, Pitney Bowes, Responsys, SAP, and SAS. Our approach consisted of an 81-criteria evaluation; reference calls and online surveys of 156 companies; executive briefings; and product demonstrations.

We found that marketers need CCCM applications to:

  • Manage a complex array of marketing processes. The campaign design process alone is elaborate – and happily vendors provide strong, yet simple, design tools. Yet CCCM tools also aid marketers in planning (budgeting, spend management, and calendaring), analysis, tactical execution, and reporting.
  • Develop more strengths in digital and emerging media. Although most vendors have extended their applications, many client references told us that vendors need to clarify their approaches to social, local, and mobile applications, and how real-time decisioning can be applied beyond offer management.
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Bringing Qualitative Research Expertise To Forrester’s Market Insights Team

As the newest addition to the Market Insights team, allow me to introduce myself. My name is Lindsey Colella, and I recently joined Forrester as a Senior Community Manager.

It is a pleasure to “meet” all of you, and I look forward to many future interactions and discussions regarding market research. My background is in qualitative research and, in particular, cultivating insights through online community management. I take great pleasure in showing clients the value of qualitative and online community research and bringing them to a new level in understanding consumer behavior.

As some of you may know, Forrester runs its own online research community for two purposes — to conduct proprietary research as well as to run custom client research projects, both of which I manage. Our proprietary research is a monthly document called Community Speaks that discusses trends in consumer behavior. This product provides a unique offering because I work closely with expert analysts who provide additional insight around the findings.

As an example, I published a document last month covering how brands should engage consumers via social networking sites. A key finding from this report is that for a brand, earning a “like” is in fact the easy part but keeping that “like” is even harder. The key to maintaining a “like” from consumers is to provide information and promotional offers that relate to their interests. As one of our community members shares:

“I have unliked a lot of brands lately. There are just too many on Facebook to like. I try to limit liking brands that I actually use and interact with often and would benefit from learning more about that brand.”

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How Facebook’s IPO Could Transform Marketing

Media reports suggest that Facebook will file for an IPO this week that could value the company at $100 billion — and leave the company sitting on $10 billion in cash. I’m not a financial analyst, so I’ll leave it to Wall Street to discuss and debate that valuation. But the fact is this newfound wealth could not only allow Facebook to solve its biggest business challenges, it could also help Facebook finally achieve its longstanding goal to change how marketing works. So how should Facebook use its IPO windfall?

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What Role Does PFM Play In Online Banking's Future?

As a new analyst researching vendors for digital banking, I wanted to share an observation as eBusiness and Channel Strategists are making decisions about digital financial services investments. In the last few months, I’ve interviewed personal financial management vendors and banks about their PFM implementations. One notable theme is bubbling up to the surface, what role does PFM play in online banking’s future? 

 With notable success in driving higher engagement, vendors and banks report that customers spend between a 2-4x more time in PFM than online banking. While both online banking and PFM have similar goals to increase retention, cross-sell, loyalty, and provide customers with greater insight into their financial picture, both offer different customer experiences. Functionally, the main difference is that online banking supports transfer and self-service capabilities, while PFM does not support transferring capabilities and may loosely, at best, integrate self-service. The biggest difference is customer experience.

  • Online banking is transactional in nature. You go there to view your balance, schedule payments, and make transfers. You get in, you get out. Most institutions have masters pushing high volume, low complexity account maintenance tasks to digital channels. The focus has mainly been on automating these capabilities to reduce manual processing to gain further cost efficiencies.
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Content Curation No Substitute For Content Creation

Printing Blocks“Publishing is a lot harder than it looks” -- so says Josh Sternberg over on Digiday. It’s true, so apparently brands are turning toward content curation in a bid to feed their ever-growing need for information to push to Facebook and Twitter streams.

The problem, as always, is that you get what you put in.

Unique content takes more out of the business because it gives more back to the business. (Well, it should.) If I wanted to be a content purist, I’d say that content curation is the equivalent of me turning up to a bake-off with a store-bought cake and saying “Look! I baked a cake.” Nobody’s impressed (or fooled) by me pretending I’m a cake expert having never broken an egg.

Even looking at it in more sympathetic terms for the time-poor Digital Marketer, in the age of customization most people are quite capable of curating their own information -- just the way they like it. There’s very little a brand can do to add value to the original content once curated. If I want to find healthy recipes online I can do that for myself, I don’t need to turn to a toaster brand -- as one of the article’s interviewees suggest-- for their perspective on healthy recipes (no doubt all with a strong toast bias). 

Content curation has a number of practical limitations: 

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CI Fail: Contextual Relevance Gone Bad

Rarely do moments like this occur. Last week, while watching the evening news (yes, I still watch news), I was horrified by the continued coverage of the cruise ship disaster in Italy. But, while watching the coverage, I was wading through my mail and opened a direct mail piece (also a rare event) that I had just received. To my horror, I found an offer from American Express to sign up for the Costa Concordia cruise. Worse still, it offered to “immerse” me in a truly European experience. To make things even worse, notice the typo in the headline?

While marketers strive to achieve messaging relevance that would make you stop what you’re doing and take notice, this execution in particular was a case of bad timing and lack of foresight into the implications of marketing campaigns already in flight.

What lessons does this highlight for customer intelligence (CI)?

  • Agility. In our research, we find that direct mail is one of the top channels that CI professionals favor over other channels. Despite CI’s heavy use of direct mail, this faux pas no doubt occurred because of the cycle time between the cruise ship disaster and the direct mail drop.
    • CI Pros: Speed up CI processes to provide greater organizational value. Apply principles of agile development to CI, especially to channels that are not inherently real-time, such as direct mail in this case.
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Frequently Asked Questions About Forrester's Customer Experience Index, 2012

Since publishing our Customer Experience Index, 2012 last week, we've gotten a flood of questions about the research, methodology, and results. I'm putting the finishing touches on a full Forrester report that answers the ten most common questions but thought I'd give everyone a sneak preview with a blog post summarizing a few of the answers.

1. Who are the people rating the brands in Forrester's Customer Experience Index?

To produce the CXi each year, Forrester conducts an online survey of US individuals ages 18 to 88. This year, there were 7,638 such folks who answered the survey during October 2011.  We weighted the data by age, gender, income, broadband adoption, and region to demographically represent the adult US online population. The sample was drawn from members of MarketTools' online panel, and respondents were motivated by receiving points that can be redeemed for a reward.

2. Which touchpoints are consumers rating when they answer the CXi questions?

The short answer to this question is "any touchpoints they used to interact with the brand." We don't direct consumers to think about any specific touchpoints as they rate their interactions. Instead, we want them to consider all of their interactions with that brand over the past 90 days, regardless of how they happened.

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Upcoming Keynote On Channel Enablement At Distree EMEA Next Week


Peter O'Neill here. I’ve been invited to speak, again, at the annual Distree EMEA event in Monte Carlo next week. Now in its tenth year, Distree gathers together top executives from tech industry vendors and distributors plus, in recent years, retailers from around EMEA for three days that include a trade show, presentation sessions, and meetings to discuss industry-specific channel topics. The 2011 event drew 950 delegates from 127 tech vendors and over 400 distributors. One of the event highlights for everybody is a process to request and set up formal one-on-one meetings between the various players, similar to our own one-on-one sessions at the Forrester Forums (only their software is better). A total of 5,000 such sessions are scheduled: some at tables in larger rooms around the trade show, many others in private meeting rooms elsewhere in the conference center.  I still have some slots open for those of you who are interested and are going to the event.

My keynote presentation continues on from my speech last year (still being watched on YouTube, I am told) where I described what changes we see happening in the channel due to recent industry trends.  The title is "The Emerging Engagement Channel Model” and leans heavily on Tim Harmon’s October reports with his permission. I will discuss the effect of industry trends such as cloud, consumerization of IT, app stores, and “Apple takes a bite at B2B business” (see below for the agenda).  

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Just Published: A Forrester Wave™ For Mobile Marketing Strategy

We’ve all seen the headlines:  2010 2011 2012 is the year of mobile!  Mobile marketing spend will outpace email search display!  Jump on the bandwagon now or else!  

. . . And while I’m bullish about mobile marketing — I better be, since it’s my primary coverage area these days — the importance of having a sound strategy and the right partners to execute often gets lost in all that hype. That’s why I’m extremely proud to have just published The Forrester Wave™: US Digital Agencies — Mobile Marketing Strategy And Execution, to help marketers identify the right agency partners to develop and build smart mobile marketing strategies that deliver real business results.

You’ll notice from the (rather long) title that I focused specifically on US-based digital agencies. Admittedly, this is a narrow view of a very wide array of service providers that help marketers create mobile programs.  However, to deliver the kind of value people expect from Forrester’s trusted Wave methodology, it was necessary to zero in on just one part of the market to ensure a level field for all players.  

Even with this focus, we screened scores of agencies for this study and ultimately ended up with nine agencies to evaluate:  AKQA, iCrossing, Ogilvy, Possible Worldwide, Razorfish, Rosetta, SapientNitro, TribalDDB, and VML. These top performing agencies were included in our evaluation because they all:

• Offer comprehensive mobile marketing services.
• Met – and mostly exceeded — a minimum revenue requirement from mobile marketing offerings.

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Snickers, Twitter, And The Problem Of Compliance

The following is a guest post by Senior Research Associate James McDavid:

When tweets from Katie Price (aka Jordan, a British glamour model) talking about the recently released Chinese GDP figures and the potential effects of large-scale quantitative easing on the liquidity of the bond markets began appearing in my Twitter stream early this week I was a little surprised. Not entirely shocked (I "accidentally" read her autobiography and she’s undoubtedly a smart cookie and a successful businesswoman) but certainly a little confused. Had her account been hacked, had she decided that what the UK really needed was a new Iron Lady and that she was up for it? A few tweets later all was revealed when Katie tweeted a picture of herself holding a chocolate bar as part of the Snickers campaign, "You’re not you when you’re hungry."

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