Three Steps to Customer Satisfaction
July 19, 2006

Customer satisfaction can be such a big task that it’s hard to get your corporate arms around it—especially if you don’t have a large service department. But you can make considerable progress by tackling the major customer gripes that occur. How do you identify them? Mitch Lieber, principal of Lieber & Associates, a call center management, metrics and technology consulting firm in Chicago, offers the following three-step process: Step 1: Do counts of how many customer service calls get passed up to the president or other high-level corporate officer. Step 2: Track the issues that generate these calls, and segment them into priority levels.

Share of Pocket: Mobile Marketing Is Poised for Growth
March 1, 2006

With cell phones more commonplace than computers and mobile devices—such as PDAs and smart phones—catching on quickly, it’s no wonder mobile marketing looks attractive to direct marketers. According to the Cellular & Telecommunications Internet Association, there are 203 million wireless subscribers in the United States, with 70 percent or higher penetration in most major metropolitan areas. On the demographics end, this market trends younger, with most wireless subscribers between the ages of 13 and 34, cites mobile market research firm M:Metrics Inc. But the 35 to 44 age group continues to expand its use of these devices year over year. “What we are seeing

Do You RSS? Your Competition May Soon
March 1, 2006

The big irony of RSS is that while many people view RSS content daily, a significant percentage don’t realize that they’re using RSS technology to manage their information gathering. A study released in 2005 by search engine portal Yahoo! and research firm Ipsos Insight reported that although 27 percent of respondents used personalized Web pages (such as My Yahoo!, My MSN, etc.), only 4 percent realized that RSS feeds drove the content on these pages. In case you’re part of the populace who isn’t quite sure what RSS is, the acronym stands for Really Simple Syndication and is a technology that allows a company to

Talking Tech
March 1, 2006

It’s one thing to size up how fast a new technology might be adopted based on customer market size, user interest surveys and other progress measurement tools. To provide an additional layer of perspective, Target Marketing caught up with JoAnne Kim, director of e-Marketing services at e-Scholastic, the e-commerce and online communication arm of children’s publishing company Scholastic. She provided insight on which tech developments are powering her company’s online endeavors, as well as those emerging solutions that are on e-Scholastic’s radar going forward. Target Marketing: How do you stay abreast of the latest technologies? JoAnne Kim: We find out about the latest technologies in multiple

Tech Roundup: A look at some of the latest solutions on the market
February 1, 2006

New technological solutions are being developed at a dizzying pace, and the good news is that many of them do not require an upgrade in hardware or software for most marketers to integrate them into their bag of tricks. The following is a sampling of some of the latest offerings from tech vendors in areas such as data hygiene, live chat, pay-per-call and more. Bazaarvoice Based in Austin, Texas, Bazaarvoice provides hosted customer ratings and review features for e-commerce Web sites. The ratings tools and review postings can be customized to match the marketer’s Web site design for seamless integration, without the installation of hardware or

Data on Demand
May 1, 2004

Two New Data Management Systems Help Miles Kimball Get Nimble. Miles Kimball, a multi-title catalog company in Oshkosh, Wis., has employed a two-pronged technological approach that gives it a clearer, real-time vision of the company’s front- and back-end operations. Armed with these tools, managers now can make business decisions—on everything from marketing campaigns to staff scheduling—by using data available on their own desktop computers. Managers no longer have to ask other departments such as IT for lengthy reports that often can take days to generate. Instead, a question, such as how many returns it’s getting on one particular SKU listed in the latest catalog