We all face it – the ongoing challenge to stay on top of “what’s new, what’s next.” Even with a host of tech-enabled tools to help aggregate relevant material, there always seems to be more content that I’d like to read than I could possibly consume on a daily basis. Scanning the onslaught of headlines, tweets, featured content, and newsfeeds, my current priorities serve as a steady guide, filtering the possibilities to a more manageable level. Beyond client news, my hot buttons these days include content strategy, customer journeys, buyer personas, social taken to the next level, and real world applications and best practices.
For those with similar interests, I thought I’d share the top content that passed the screen this week along with a few key lessons I took from each:
- When Sexy is Just Not Enough. Mercifully, not an editorial on Miley Cyrus. Rather, LinkedIn Today — my first stop most mornings — served up this post by McKinsey’s David Edelman in Marketing Strategies. His point: while it’s natural to focus on the sizzle, marketers need and want to look beyond sexy creative and delve into the ‘how.’ “There is a massive hunger among marketers, including those in the audience (at ANA’s Digital and Social Conference), for not just cool ideas they can learn from, but also for finding out the mechanics that make sexy happen.” Couldn’t agree more. We hear this regularly from clients. Lesson: Strive for balance; don’t ignore the operations side of the house.
- Cisco Leads the Way in Social CRM. Lots of organizations grapple with how to tie social to real business value. Cisco is no exception. Lasandra Brill, Senior Manager of Global Social Media outlined Cisco’s four-pronged social media strategy in the latest installment of The Big Brand Theory on Social Media Today. Prominently featured was its ‘next-gen’ social CRM approach designed to put the collected information and social analytics to productive use by the right teams. Lesson: Pilot to understand how best to make social assets, interactions and analytics actionable and then scale to drive measurable impact.
- Epic Content. On Slideshare, CMI’s Joe Pulizzi offers up 20 epic examples of brands’ content marketing that is targeted, compelling and consistently engaging for customers and prospects. Among my favorites are Adobe’s CMO.com and Coca Cola Journey – both innovative ways to connect with their targets. Lesson: Keep canvassing the landscape for relevant examples to inspire and inform your programs. Sometimes, it’s not just about the ‘new’ that distinguishes the effort – it’s how they’ve evolved to stay fresh and engaging over time.
- Nordstrom’s Pinterest Interest. This real-world example describes how the high-end retailer, noted for its dedication to listening to its customers, is bringing the omni-channel experience to life. As reported in the Business Insider, the pilot extends engagement beyond giving online shoppers the ability to ‘pin’ any merchandise on the Nordstrom site. The brand is integrating the social feedback from 4.5 million Pinterest followers to the shopping experience by using that data to influence merchandising decisions in-store. Community-promoted merchandise carries a red Pinterest label and salespeople are armed with an app that matches popular Pinterest items with current inventory. Lesson: As Nordstrom’s social media manager Bryan Galipeau said, “What we’re doing here is taking the lead from the customer” and it could help us “translate digital insight into a real experience.”
So that’s one marketing pro’s approach to finding a few hidden gems in a sea of information. What’s your strategy?
Engaging your customers is at the heart of successful marketing programs. For more than 20 years, Cheryl has been building and executing content and thought leadership strategies designed to do just that. She is excited to be applying that well-honed skill to a help companies like Microsoft, Cisco, 3M, Intel, Capital One and Barclaycard tap into their stakeholder communities and build sophisticated content strategies.
Her experience base spans a range of industries – from technology and financial services to retail, travel, consumer products and healthcare. Cheryl has served as an integral member of her clients’ marketing teams, providing counsel on marketing and brand strategy, thought leadership, media relations, product introductions, and event management.
Prior to joining ComBlu, Cheryl spent 10 years leading corporate marketing for large, complex organizations.