The Magic of Happiness

How can you make your customers happy?

     Last August I was at Inbound13 conference in Boston. I was lucky to have an extra day to spend going around the city. During that I stopped by a restaurant near the Memorial park and the food and the service were great. I did over tip the waiter because the service was super awesome. I realized that I checked-in by Foursquare and wrote a good recommendation with pictures too. Looking back at that moment I realized that I did that automatically and happily would recommend it to anyone. Wouldn’t you do the same too, if you get a super good service and food? Continue reading “The Magic of Happiness”

Marketers are spammers by Law

In different workshops and casual settings here in Saudi,I have discussed this idea of ” Stop Spamming and do real communication in your varied marketing efforts, traditional and digital”. Now CITC (Communications and Information technology Commission ) has clearly announced that continuing this practice will make you a criminal by law! this is the official document

This is harsh huh! In a simple example for a marketing activity scenario we can see this conversation

” Marketing staff

A:  We have finished the TV Ad and ready to air based on the timelines planned.
B:Cool what about the other communication channels?
A: The agency will send email shots and SMS blasts to 3000000 people (youth, travel, music, football, etc ) for a good price.
B: Great then , good job.”

Have you noticed!  It’s a Blast and Shot! So expressive enough to tell its a SPAM and intrusive kind of communication. So these are so common among most of marketers unfortunately, but luckily not for long now this has to be corrected by the power of law not marketing science or ethics!

Why not do it right, and build your own customer database for email and SMS as well. Simple engaging ideas can earn the trust of current clients or new customers to give their permissions to share their contact details and opt-in for your newsletter and promotions. Just ask them, but before you go and ask them, make sure you have set up the strategy for CRM as part of your marketing and digital marketing operation. Well, it doesn’t need to be so complicated, it is always cool to start with simple execution for CRM (customer relation management) program, call it newsletter database or clients database if the acronym “CRM” makes it complicated or scary – for you – to do it right.

Here are some simple ideas that could be used. You can get the clients’ contact information by asking them to fill a small form/application at the point of sale if you have a shop or by a form in your website if you sell online too. Else you could do a small contest where you can collect customers’ entries and send them an invite to opt-in later on or send them a thank you letter for their purchase offline or online and invite them to sign-up for your newsletter. There are many ways to do it, I am just stating basic ones here, but of course you are creative enough to create more interesting ideas for this.

Make it clear that you will not sell or share their data with anyone else and it will be used only to share cool stuff or may be offers, but not useless spamming messages that are irrelevant. Make sure you ask them for their permission to opt-in, as if you don’t then they can NOW file a complaint that you are a spammer and then you become a marketing criminal, not professional, then the new regulation will catch you. Of course you don’t want this to happen. So it is important to have these written proofs that the customer has opted-in and has given you permission  to communicate with them.

Why it is important to be clear and transparent about customer data and contact details! Actually there must be a true privacy policy inside the organization that everyone has to understand well. Because privacy is a priceless asset and once you show any conduct against the rules of privacy and international common practice of saving customer data, then earning the customers’ trust back is close to impossible. When they switch to a competitor or just stop buying or doing business with you, then this is a result of being arrogant and ignorant, not because your product or service wasn’t good enough!

You need customer’s permission

My first time reading this book was in 2003 and after few years I had to buy it again, but as an audio book. At that time I used to work two different jobs at the same time and one of them was mainly selling online website services and this book helped us coin our ideas on how to use the clients’ database that we had built over the course of business. It was and still insightful and will be useful over and over again.
Permission marketing, turning strangers into friends and friends into customers by Seth Godin

“The Ultimate entrepreneur for the Information Age” explains “Permission Marketing” -the Business Week calls Seth Godin.

I need not to talk about Seth Godin, he is a phenomenon in the marketing knowledge wiki.
The Ultimate entrepreneur for the Information Age

I need not to talk about Seth Godin, he is a phenomenon in the marketing knowledge world. To address this book, I have to say that, it is a mandate today that marketers do marketing scientifically and look at the aspects of customer engagement. Why it should be highlighted as an important book to look at and read thoughtfully. Because it uncovers the secrets of personalization, segmentation, interest groups and the value of engaged customers. It is not a new book, but certainly works for yesterday, now and tomorrow. As it talks about the psychology and science of consumer engagement and what is right or wrong about marketing practices.
Have you taken customers permission before talking to them by annoying SMS or email? Are you a spammer or a communicator? Stop talking to the mass and focus on the interested ones. They will not just bring business, they will recommend you and even write good reviews about you. Isn’t this what all marketers and business people want ! A lovely customer that buys from us, shares our content and recommends us for her/his network!

This book is Definitely a gold mine for marketers of today and tomorrow.