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Article Image: The Guy Who Designed The 2012 Olympics Logo (Reprise)

The Guy Who Designed The 2012 Olympics Logo (Reprise)

I’m rethinking the previous post. How could be I so short-sighted not to see what a genius this guy is? He wasn’t drunk — he was brilliant! He could have tried to design something that would capture the feel and set the tone for the 2012 Olympics. But, nooooo, he designed something so butt-ugly that […]

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Article Image: What Financial Firms Can Learn From The Grateful Dead

What Financial Firms Can Learn From The Grateful Dead

A few years ago, I wrote something called “What Bankers Can Learn From The Grateful Dead.” This comment, from Ron Bensley Jr. on Modern Marketing, reminded me of that: Latteland Community Credit Union (pseudonym) recently imposed an 8% fee for using their formerly-free coin machines. From a marketing and member-relations standpoint, this was a poor […]

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Article Image: Wanna Know Why Consumers Don't Trust Banks?

Wanna Know Why Consumers Don't Trust Banks?

Then read this post from a fellow blogger. I don’t, for a second, believe that this is an isolated example. If the firm in question — and I don’t care who it is, and I’m not going to mention it by name — had been forthcoming with the details, one of two scenarios would likely […]

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Article Image: Life With Jessica

Life With Jessica

Colin recently wrote about the responsibility bloggers have to be understood. Few are as good as Jessica Hagy of Indexed site fame. Her ability to effectively communicate with graphics has been the inspiration for a number of my posts. As I was reading her site recently, a thought popped into my head: What if she […]

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Article Image: And I Thought I Had It Bad

And I Thought I Had It Bad

Earlier this week, I posted some comments about some experiences I had with a couple of firms I do business with. After reading this paper from a professor at the IESE Business School, I have to admit that I had no right to complain. My experiences pale in comparison to what this guy went through. […]

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Article Image: Financial Check-Ups

Financial Check-Ups

Matt, the Credit Union Warrior, asks a great question: We all have annual health screenings. Why don’t we put a similar level of importance on our financial health?” You might be tempted to think it’s because of cost. After all, if you’ve got health insurance, the out-of-pocket cost for your annual check-up is minimal, and […]

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Article Image: Homepage Politics

Homepage Politics

One of the silliest games that firms play is What should we put on the home page?” In many firms, you would think that home page real estate was more valuable than oceanfront property in Malibu. Product managers and LOB execs often believe that their products have a “right” to be on their company’s home […]

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Article Image: Quien Es Mas Stupido?

Quien Es Mas Stupido?

Remember when Saturday Night Live used to play Quien Es Mas Macho? I’m going to play Quien Es Mas Stupido? Here are today’s contestants: Contestant #1 is my Internet services provider. I agreed to upgrade to their fiber optic service and made an appointment to have a technician install the service. But when my wife […]

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Article Image: Off-Topic: Jeopardy Categories I Can Beat Ken Jennings At

Off-Topic: Jeopardy Categories I Can Beat Ken Jennings At

1) Things That Go Wrong With A Volvo S80 2) Canadian Online Banking Sites 3) Grateful Dead: The Wall Of Sound Era 1973-1974 4) Who’s Got A Loyalty Program? 5) 101 Things Home Depot Sells To Kill Lawn Grubs That Don’t Work 6) Gourmet Restaurants Of Ticonderoga, NY I’m counting on Ken not knowing about […]

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Article Image: Dude Writes Like A Lady

Dude Writes Like A Lady

If you blog, then click here and prepare to waste the next hour or two of your life. The Gender Genie will analyze your writing and tell you if you write a like a man or a woman. I put about 10 of my recent posts through the genie and it came back in nine […]

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Article Image: Milestones

Milestones

Back in June 1980, I was out in Boulder, CO to see a couple of Grateful Dead shows that were billed as the “15th anniversary concerts.” Bob Weir was interviewed on a local radio station and asked what significance the 15th anniversary held to him and the rest of the band. He said: It doesn’t […]

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Article Image: A Consumer Advocate’s View On Financial Services Cross-Selling

A Consumer Advocate’s View On Financial Services Cross-Selling

A recent New York Times article about financial supermarkets reports that: Consumers should think carefully before combining their financial accounts with one company, said Barbara Roper, the director of investor protection at the Consumer Federation of America, a consumer advocacy group based in Washington. She said the flip side to the convenience may be a […]

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Article Image: Fixing The Marketing-CEO Disconnect

Fixing The Marketing-CEO Disconnect

HBS Working Knowledge interviewed Harvard Business School professor Gail McGovern about fixing the disconnect between marketing and the CEO. Here are a few of the key points that stuck out for me and my responses. ______________________________________________________________ McGovern: “Over the past 10 years the mix of marketing skills needed by a company has radically changed, and […]

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Article Image: I Must Be A Gen Yer

I Must Be A Gen Yer

In the May 28, 2007 issue of Fortune magazine, there’s an article that purports to be a “field guide to Generation Y.” According to the article, the way to spot a Gen Yer is by his or her headphones, clothes (jeans, sneakers, jacket), laptop, designer coffee, BlackBerry, digital camera, and iPod. I read this article […]

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Article Image: The Dark Side Of Customer Analytics?

The Dark Side Of Customer Analytics?

The May 2007 issue of the Harvard Business Review contains a case study entitled “The Dark Side Of Customer Analytics” by Tom Davenport and Jeanne Harris, authors of the book “Competing On Analytics”. An intriguing title, for sure. But completely misguided. The crux of the story is that an insurance firm purchases loyalty card data […]

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Article Image: The Fourth Skill

The Fourth Skill

Somebody screwed up. I don’t know who, and I really don’t care, because as a result of this screwup, I’m sitting in first class on my way home from my firm’s conference in Miami. And I’m sitting next to my colleague Dennis, who’s in first class because he screwed up — he took a job […]

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Article Image: Why Firms Don’t Care About LTV

Why Firms Don’t Care About LTV

Jim Novo asks (and answers) the question: Why don’t firms care about customer lifetime value? Jim asserts that there are fundamental reasons why companies don’t take a longer-term view in respect to their marketing programs including: Business culture — where performance rewards are tied to short-term goals. Nobody in charge — no one has full-time […]

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Article Image: Make Something Worth Talking About

Make Something Worth Talking About

I’m at my company’s annual customer symposium at the Biltmore in Miami, and just heard Seth Godin present. Very entertaining, of course, but one thing, in particular, really resonated with me. Something that gives me more fodder for arguing against the Net Promoter Score mania gripping many firms. Seth may have identified other rules, but […]

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Article Image: CEO Letter To Web Analytics — Response To Eric Peterson’s Memo

CEO Letter To Web Analytics — Response To Eric Peterson’s Memo

In response to the CEO’s letter to Web analytics, Eric Peterson penned a memo from Web analytics back to the CEO. Take a moment to read his letter, then come back here for my reply back: ———————————————————————————————————- To: CMO, CIO, SVP-Ecommerce From: CEO Subject: Memo from The Web Analytics Team to “beloved CEO” Date: May […]

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Article Image: Subliminal Messages

Subliminal Messages

A recent article on MarketingProfs on the “wrongheaded claims against advertising” asserts that: Subliminal advertising, the alleged ability to motivate action with messages that are below are threshold of perception, doesn’t exist. Explicit, above-threshold messages in advertisements are what sell; hidden, muffled, or unperceivable messages do not.” Oh really? Well, it turns out that… Research […]

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Article Image: Advice For The New Volkswagen Chief Marketing Officer

Advice For The New Volkswagen Chief Marketing Officer

Adweek reported a while back that Volkswagen dismissed its Chief Marketing Officer. While I’m generally loathe to offer advice to CMOs in industries I don’t usually work with, in this case, the urge is too tempting: Give all the money earmarked for advertising to manufacturing. Why? Steve Johnson at Pragmatic Marketing wrote: “…and then there’s […]

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Article Image: How To Give A Great Presentation (In Nine Words)

How To Give A Great Presentation (In Nine Words)

When I first saw the link on Robbie Wright’s site, I didn’t click on it. But after I saw the link on Colin Henderson’s site, I knew that I had better click on it. When two bloggers you respect link to the same thing — pay attention. The link was to a presentation called Shift […]

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Article Image: A Letter To Web Analytics From The CEO

A Letter To Web Analytics From The CEO

To my colleagues in Web Analytics: I wanted to take this opportunity to thank you for the great work you’ve been doing in helping the firm improve our Web site, and for the enlightening data that you provide to me and the leadership team regarding our site’s visitors and the trends in utilization of the […]

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Article Image: Lazy Money

Lazy Money

Announcing his firm’s new high-yield checking account, Charles Schwab said: The financial world lives off lazy money. There is inertia, and in some respects that’s exactly why we decided we had to make this a very powerful offering.” Chuck’s right on. (If the firm is going to run ads that say “Talk to Chuck”, then […]

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Article Image: The Future Of The Chief Marketing Officer

The Future Of The Chief Marketing Officer

What’s the biggest problem CMOs have? In my opinion, it’s that they’re held accountable for too many things for which they have no control, let alone influence, over. The CMO Council might agree. As reported in AdWeek: CMOs are failing at a high rate because they lack the skill sets, credibility, and authority to fulfill […]

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Article Image: The Market Research Hall Of Shame

The Market Research Hall Of Shame

MSN Money recently published its Customer Service Hall of Shame, which found banks like Bank of America, Citibank, and Wells Fargo in the “Bottom 10”. As a way to generate publicity, this is an infallible approach. Survey some consumers, ask them to rate a bunch of big companies on customer service, and blare the results […]

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Article Image: Update On comScore conFusion

Update On comScore conFusion

Spoke to Serge Matta and Brian Jurutka from comScore today about my post regarding comScore’s online banking statistics. Although I linked to comScore’s press release, I didn’t cite another source upon which I drew some of the data — this Marketing Daily article. My apologies for that, and a lesson learned for me — because […]

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Article Image: The Devolution Of Social Networking?

The Devolution Of Social Networking?

Hundreds of years ago, the key to economic success was land ownership. Today’s it’s idea ownership (sometimes called intellectual capital). That’s why thought leadership is so important (side note: I’ve only received one request for membership to ITCH so far — not a good sign). It’s in this context that I found this comment from […]

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Article Image: When Should A Bank Outsource Outbound Sales?

When Should A Bank Outsource Outbound Sales?

The CMO of a financial institution told me about a meeting she had with a firm regarding outsourcing her firm’s outbound sales calls. Which got me thinking: When should a bank outsource its outbound sales efforts?” My answer: Never. Sure, I can envision arguments for outsourcing sales. And I know that many firms are highly […]

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