Lessons From an Exercise in Customer Service Futility

Recently, I went through the absolute worst customer experience of my life. The experience was with a major telecommunications firm that, in my opinion, is sorely lacking a customer-centric focus and a strategy for effective social business.

I normally am not one to vent publicly, but in this case I absolutely feel compelled to share my story.  I am choosing not to name the company in question, but I am endeavoring to contact senior staff. I want them to know that this happened. Maybe I am naïve, but I am hopeful writing this post will make a difference.

Towards the end of the post, I have shared a few thoughts on things this company might consider doing differently.

Day 1: It begins.

  • I called the company to order TV and Internet, with specific interest in a new TV service they’re offering.
  • After being on hold for 20 minutes, I reached a customer service rep. I was given pricing for TV and Internet, but soon realized that the TV pricing was for an older, existing service – not the new service.
  • I was told that I needed to speak with someone in a different department to order the new service and was transferred, enduring another 20 minutes of time on hold.
  • Finally, I spoke with someone about the new TV service and we went through pricing. Given the multitude of pricing options, things got confusing very quickly. All the while, I made it clear that I only wanted the most basic TV and Internet package.
  • Before proceeding with the order, I was told that the TV and Internet package would actually be $20 less expensive per month if I added home phone; reluctantly, I decided to do so (I use my mobile and I don’t have a need for a landline).  Installation was set for the following week, on Saturday.
  • I received my invoice via email, and realized that monthly pricing was actually $40 more expensive than I was quoted. There was no “bundling” discount for ordering home phone, and I wasn’t given the basic TV package I had asked for.
  • I called back, to cancel home phone and change my TV package. After enduring another 30 minutes on hold, the customer service representative told me that he was not able to cancel home phone; I needed to speak to someone in the “Loyalty” department, he said, which was closed for the day. I needed to phone back tomorrow.

Day 2: Nobody home.

  • I phoned to cancel my home phone, and endured another 15 minutes on hold before speaking with another customer service representative.
  • I was told that the “Loyalty” department was not open on Sundays, and that I needed to phone back on Monday – in spite of being told the previous day to call back “tomorrow”.

Day 3: Starting to memorize the “on hold” music.

  • Again, I phoned to cancel my home phone. Again, I endured 20 minutes on hold before getting through to a customer service representative.
  • The customer service representative said that I can’t directly call the “Loyalty” department, and that he would need to transfer me – resulting in about 25 more minutes spent on hold.
  • Finally, I spoke with someone in the “Loyalty” department and was able to cancel my home phone.

Day 5: My head hurts.

  • Fast-forward a couple of days, I received an automatic email from the telecommunications company reminding me about my installation on the upcoming Friday – and that I would need to be home from 8am to 5pm.
  • Of course, this made no sense! I had earlier arranged for the installation to be on Saturday, and received an email confirming the day. I work during the week, which was why I needed a Saturday installation.
  • Again, I called the telecommunications firm. By this time, sadly, I was starting to memorize their number.
  • Again, I had to spend 20 minutes on hold before speaking with someone.
  • I got through, but then was told that I had the wrong department – I was connected with the department responsible for the “old” TV service.
  • The customer service representative said she needed to transfer me to a different department; I was put on hold, and 20 minutes later I was connected with the SAME department.  That’s right, the department responsible for the old TV service.
  • Once again, in a second attempt to transfer me, I was put on hold for another 15 minutes.
  • Finally, I was connected to the right department. In short, I was told (1) the installation was changed to Friday, (2) they didn’t know why, and (3) there was nothing they could do about it – they couldn’t reschedule back to Saturday.
  • I explicitly mentioned that I work during the week, and that weekday installation not possible under any circumstance. The customer service agent then proceeded with litany of questions including (1) Can someone else be home for you? (2) Can you get building manager let the installation technician in? and (3) Are you available next week?
  • My answers: NO, NO and NO!
  • Finally, I was able to schedule installation for Saturday of the following week. Or at least I was hopeful that installation would be on Saturday – by this point, I had lost all confidence and trust in the company.

Day 6: Now I’m laughing.

  • Yes, there’s more! I received an automated call from the company indicating that installation would be on Friday –  the day I had just said would not work for me. By this point, I didn’t care, and didn’t bother to respond.

Day 7: This company likes to call me.

  • I received automated call from company indicating installation would be on Saturday  – the original day I had hoped for.

Day 8 (the original installation date): Peace and tranquility.

  • Nobody showed up. Not that I was expecting anyone to. I mean really, I wasn’t.

Day 14: Another lovely automated call.

  • I received automated call from company indicating installation would be on the following day.

Day 15: Hallelujah!

  • The installation technician showed up, and my home TV and Internet were set up.  Of course, during the installation, the technician himself had to endure about 20 minutes on hold with someone at the company.

So there you have it. Really I don’t know where to begin with the failures of this company. The tools, the technology – they now exist to help organizations become customer-centric. However, a customer-centric focus starts with senior leadership and well-directed strategy.

What could this company do differently?  Here are a few thoughts.

1. Differentiate yourself based on customer service and relationships.

“The fastest network”.  “The most reliable network”. “The best rates”. Do you know which specific telecommunications company made those claims? Didn’t think so.  Telecommunications companies can’t differentiate themselves on product, but they can differentiate themselves based on service to the customer.  In the case of this company, the time has come to create and adopt a “customer is king” (or “customer is queen”) philosophy and focus.  Put the customer at the center of planning, and re-engineer business processes accordingly, creating the best customer experience possible. Believe me, we’ll notice. And you’ll win – because word will get out. Yes, we’ll tell our friends about the amazing experience we had with your company – instead of telling the world about terrible debacles.

2. Simplify your phone system and leverage technology to improve it.

A different call center for each TV service that you offer, with each having little or no knowledge about the “other” TV service?  Really? Train your employees so that they have a broad and in-depth understanding of all of your different products and services – and empower employees to speak about them.  Also, implement automatic call back functionality.  I spent hours waiting on hold, I shudder to think what my cell phone bill will be (thankfully, my cell phone plan is with one of your competitors).

3. Be available to listen and to help – when and where your customers want it.

I tried to look for help on Twitter and on Facebook.  I was looking for you. I was looking for your helping hand.  But where was it? It is clear that you have no social strategy. If you do, it is being extremely poorly executed. Have a look at what a litany of other top tier companies are doing – and follow their lead.

Now, having written all this, if the guilty company is reading this – you still have a chance. I am still your customer.  Please …. show me that you’re listening. Show me that you care.

Right now, I have my doubts.

5 Things to Thank Steve For

Perhaps it’s fitting that I’m writing this on Thanksgiving, a great time to pause, reflect, and give thanks to those who have had a significant impact on my life. Last Wednesday the world lost a true visionary in Steve Jobs. Much has been written, and much has been said, about the overwhelming impact and contribution that Jobs has made; some people have alluded to Jobs as being the Einstein of our generation, and I have a hard time disagreeing with that comparison.

Here are five personal things that I would like to thank Steve for:

  1. Inspiring me. Steve’s many accomplishments, and the manner in which he achieved them, speak volumes.
  2. Helping me to maintain and build relationships with friends. Sure, I use platforms like Facebook and Twitter, but it’s through Apple products that I access them.
  3. Adding an element of fun to my runs. I bought an iPod Nano years ago, and have since graduated to using my iPhone. The Nike+ GPS app is definitely one of my favourites.
  4. Teaching me. Steve Jobs built Apple into a brand that is unlike any other – one that cultivates passion and emotion, and arguably has the most loyal customer base in the world.
  5. Reminding me that nobody is perfect. Even Apple is not without it’s flaws. Lost in the outpouring of admiration for Steve is one very staunch reality:  the majority of Apple products are manufactured in China by Foxconn, a company that is known for significant human rights violations.

Of course, it’s also fitting that I’m writing this using my MacBrook Pro. Steve, you will be missed.

Innovation in Advertising: Ignacio Oreamuno and Giant Hydra

I am excited to introduce a new feature on my blog. Every few weeks, I will be posting short interviews with interesting people who are truly making an impact in the business world – through their thoughts, their ideologies and their actions, paving the path for new and innovative ways of doing things.

This week’s interview is with Ignacio Oreamuno, a true innovator in the advertising industry. Ignacio is President of IHAVEANIDEA, one of the world’s largest online advertising communities, and he is CEO of the Tomorrow Awards, an international advertising awards show with a focus specifically on the future of advertising.

More recently, Ignacio developed and launched Giant Hydra. Giant Hydra is a unique technology that enables ad agencies and clients to access a global pool of creative professionals for work on a particular project. Qualified professionals, selected by the ad agencies and clients, participate in mass collaboration – working virtually and as a team through Giant Hydra, leveraging their collective ingenuity to create ideas for the project at hand.

Thank you, Ignacio, for taking the time out of your busy schedule to share your insights.

1. How do you envision the creative development process at agencies evolving over the next five to ten years? With respect to a movement towards mass collaboration, at what stage are we at?

The advertising has not changed in over 150 years. It is pretty much the same structure and method of work.

Take a look at all other industries and you can see that they all have changed dramatically over the last 50, 20, 10 and even last two years. Remember when Kodak claimed that digital photography would never have the quality of film? When music companies said digital music wouldn’t work, that the quality of CD’s was better?

The creative process between a copywriter and an art director that Burnbach famously pioneered is no longer apt for the campaigns of today.

As the recession proved, money talks. If an industry can produce a product (in this case creative ideas) in a lot less time, of better or equal quality and for less money, there is nothing that will stop change from destroying the old way of things. All it takes is a handful of agencies to start doing it and boom, it will change things forever.

Look at other industries, like digital film, online music etc. Once technology makes things better, it’s impossible to turn back the page.

Right now agencies are skeptical. They are all waiting for the other one to try mass collaboration and see if it works. Again, instead of seeing the opportunity and jumping on it, a lot of them are so scared of change that they would rather wait. I know a few people who say this model won’t work. They are the same people that have never used it. Ironic.

2. What do you believe is the biggest barrier with regards to improving collaboration and innovation?

The biggest barrier is going to be in getting proof that mass collaboration produces quality. Agencies want to know one thing and one thing only. That you can produce award winning work out of mass collaboration. Giant Hydra is so new that it is hard to show case studies since all of the work is confidential. It will take some time for the work to come out and for the evidence to be ready. I am not worried about that, I’m just focused now on showing the system on a case by case basis to each agency. Everybody always gets blown away by the quality of the people working in the system and the quality of the ideas.

I don’t think there are any more barriers apart from that. Giant Hydra works. Period. Mass collaboration works. Period. I’ve seen it, I’m seeing it right now.

3. A number of creative professionals and associations have expressed reservations about crowdsourcing, essentially claiming that crowdsourced creative undervalues their skills and expertise. What are your thoughts on this?

The HydraHeads in Giant Hydra are all paid. Some of them work on multiple projects at the same time earning multiple fees. And they work from wherever they are in the world, whether that is NY or Japan or a beach. They are all award winning creatives, strategists, planners, and social media mavericks. I would challenge anyone to have a beer with one of the HydraHeads and ask them how they feel about it. In all honesty, they seem pretty excited and happy, and these are 10+ years experience people.

Most people understand crowdsourcing as a contest where the best idea wins. This is not the case with mass collaboration crowdsourcing where it’s essentially a group of people (more than 2 working together online for a fixed salary). The word “crowdsourcing” is now tainted I think, and there’s not much anyone can do about that.

Follow Ignacio Oreamu on Twitter at @ihaveanidea.

Follow Giant Hydra on Twitter at @GiantHydra.

The One Question That Truly Defines Someone’s Level of Social Media Expertise

It’s been awhile since I’ve had a chance to blog. Now that my life is a bit more settled, I hope to be able to write and share my thoughts on a more frequent basis.

Over the last number of months, there’s been a fair bit of discussion in the social media world about how people describe their level of social media “expertise”. Terms like social media “expert”, “evangelist”, “guru” and, surprisingly, even “ninja” are used so frequently, it’s almost like there’s a fire sale on them.

Now, I am all for the progression of social media – I feel that it’s important for companies to leverage available tools and technologies in becoming more social and more human in the way they act, communicate and conduct business.  Having people who are enthusiastic about social media, as well trained in and knowledgeable about social media tools and emerging technologies, is key to this progression.

However, unfortunately there is a significant credibility issue when it comes to people and their often self-proclaimed level of social media expertise. Social is evolving at such a breakneck speed, can anyone really claim to be an expert? In my opinion, no. Further, and more notably, many who claim to be experts actually lack formal marketing or communications experience – social media doesn’t exist by itself in a vacuum, it needs to be integrated with marketing, communications, customer service and other business functions!

This leads me to a key point I would like to make. There is one great way to judge someone’s knowledge of social media. Ask them this question:

What tangible business results have you created through your social media efforts?

The proof should be in the pudding. Even Bruce Lee can’t fake an answer to this question.

Shipping

Are you in the mindset of shipping? Do you focus on delivering quality work and output in a timely manner, but with a realization that it might not be 100% perfect?

Often times, I think that people spend too much time trying to achieve perfection. It’s not that producing quality output isn’t important – it is. However the time spent achieving perfection can often best be utilized for other pursuits.

I’d rather produce 10 projects that are really, really good as opposed to one project that is perfect. Recently, I’ve spent some time working for a couple of startups – I honestly don’t think they’d survive if they didn’t focus on shipping.

Do you strive for perfection? Or do you have a sense for when the time is right to move to the next task?

A Social Welcome to Your New City

I recently co-authored a blog post with my friend Debbie Horovitch, posted on the blog for her new community management talent agency sparkle & shine. The post provides tips on how immigrants to a new country can leverage social media to ease the transition and become better acquainted with their new surroundings.

Please read the post and let us know what you think!

How Observant Are You?

Too often, people are guilty of getting stuck in their own world. They focus on the minutiae of daily activities – without realizing the vast, amazing changes that are happening around them.

Those who are most observant of their external environment gain knowledge that can prove to be very beneficial. Knowledge that lends to creativity and new ideas – enabling people to get unstuck from the confines of their own world.

How observant are you?

Ignite Passion and Word of Mouth: Connect Your Customers!

Buoyed by eagerness to reach customers on the social web, many businesses have endeavored to build personable, direct relationships with customers and other stakeholder groups using social media. Businesses realize the potential to create deeper connections and loyalty, which should ultimately lead to sales over the longer term customer life cycle. However, many businesses are uncertain how to participate and consequently, in my opinion, few truly take full advantage of the business potential associated with social media.

One key is to create a strong and vibrant online community of ambassadors for your brand. It’s true that the web has made building individual relationships cheaper and faster than what was previously possible. However, scaling such deep relationships over a broad base of stakeholders is, in most cases, neither feasible not effective.

Alternatively, companies that focus on building brand loyalty with a small subset of customers might find that their efforts have an exponential impact.

Here are several companies that have done this successfully:

Maker’s Mark

Maker’s Mark is a small batch bourbon whiskey that is distilled in Loretto, Kentucky by Fortune Brands. For a number of years now, they’ve been running an ambassador program that is all about passion for their brand of bourbon. Maker’s Mark ambassadors receive access to a private online community, appropriately named “The Embassy”, through which they can receive a number of perks – including personalized business cards (ideal for handing out in bars), as well as having their name engraved on an actual barrel of Maker’s Mark bourbon. How cool is that? Additionally, amongst other things, ambassadors receive access to VIP tasting events and exclusive gift shop access.

Yelp

Recently, while on a group hike near Toronto, I asked a fellow hiker if she had any recommendations on Toronto events and restaurants I should consider checking out. Immediately, she provided a few thoughts and strongly suggested that I create a profile on Yelp – a social networking, user review and local search website for members to post reviews and get user feedback on local businesses and restaurants. She’s actually a member of Yelp’s Elite Squad – a program through which Yelp rewards it’s top users, providing them with exclusive offers and access to members-only events. In addition to rewarding loyal users, the program provides a great incentive for other members to post additional reviews, making the site content stronger while keeping the broader community active and engaged.

Fiskars

In an earlier post on Community Management Best Practices, I referred to Fiskateers.com. Fiskars, a well-known brand of scissors, created a vibrant online community by focusing on a shared passion for many of it’s customers – scrapbooking. The company started by recruiting some of its most loyal customers to the community – branding them as Fiskateers. Fiskateer ambassadors receive a number of benefits, including access to exclusive meetup events and the opportunity to share their passion for scrapbooking with others in the private online community.

So, what did these companies do right? They built strong connections with the most passionate segment of their customer base. In doing so, they essentially put their customers to work for them – spreading word of mouth through their personal networks, inspiring new customers and spurring community growth.

Building connections with customers takes both commitment and recognition that social media can be a great tool for achieving businesses goals. In oder to attain a tangible return, business must be willing to make an investment – online and offline – as Maker’s Mark, Yelp and Fiskars all did. They didn’t just focus on counting Facebook Fans, they created social communities that generated value – for themselves, the ambassadors, and other customers.

Do you know any companies that have connected their most loyal customers through innovative brand ambassador programs? If so, please share!

We Are All Canucks

Wow, do those words ever ring true. Thanks to a loyal, ardent fan base, and the power of social media, Vancouver Canucks fandom has risen to an entirely new level. Canucks fans have turned to social media to share their experiences and emotions, expressing themselves through compelling content ranging from short tweets to engaging videos. At the same time, the organization itself has really excelled at leveraging social media to encourage fan participation and build loyalty – and there is little doubt that the strength of the Vancouver Canucks brand has been significantly augmented as a result.

Let’s first look at fan participation in creating and sharing content. Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and the blogosphere have all been significant conduits for the spread of entertaining and engaging videos, images, and opinions on the Canucks.

Numerous fun, high quality videos have been created – many by relative amateurs. This one, a parody of Rebecca Black’s viral hit “Friday”, was posted on YouTube at the beginning of April and has already garnered over 320,000 views.

People have also developed Canuck-themed avatars, posting and sharing on Facebook, Twitter and other platforms.

The blogosphere is also abuzz with postings related to the Canucks. Enter the term “Canucks” in Google Blog Search, and over one million results are returned. No, not all are related to the team – but given limited alternative applications of the word “Canucks”, it’s a fairly good indicator of the conversations that are happening.

On top of all this, Twitter and Facebook truly enhance the experience of watching a Canucks game, by enabling people to partake in banter as the game unfolds – no matter where they are watching from.

Paralleling the fan generated content, the Canucks organization has really done a great job in engaging with fans through social media.

For starters, the Canucks have built a strong presence on Facebook, with over 445,000 fans, and Twitter, with over 113,000 followers. According to sportsfangraph.com, the Canucks rank 7th amongst NHL teams with respect to total following – and second amongst Canadian teams, trailing only the Montreal Canadiens. They also have a strong degree of activity in forums hosted on canucks.com.

Of course, numbers only tell part of the story. The Canucks have used their website and social media platforms to share compelling content including, for example, polished highlight videos, player interviews, and behind the scene glimpses of team activities. They also run fun, compelling contests that fans enjoy.

One neat social initiative the Canucks have launched for the playoffs is This is What We Live For – a website through which Canucks fans can help create a mosaic. Upon submitting a personal photo for the mosaic, people are asked to mention why they are a Canucks fan, and are then prompted to share the mosaic through Twitter or Facebook.

I find the mosaic itself to be quite fitting. Yes, fellow Canucks fans, We Are All Canucks.

50 Key Takeaways from the BCAMA VISION Marketing Conference

On May 19th, the British Columbia Chapter of the American Marketing Association held its’ annual flagship VISION Marketing Conference. This year, the focus was on the concept of ‘community’ and how the concept is reshaping our marketing landscape – as companies build deeper, more meaningful relationships with customers.

As I’m currently in Toronto, unfortunately I wasn’t able to attend VISION. However, I was paying close attention to the Twitter stream, enticed by a great speaker lineup and my affinity for the BCAMA – I volunteered with the association for over five years.

Thank you to VISION attendees, as well as the BCAMA’s social media team, for sharing what was being discussed. Here are the top 50 takeaways I was able to glean from Twitter!

Scott Stratten – Social Media Expert, Author of UnMarketing

  • rgerschman: #2011vision Marketing is not a task. Marketing is every time you choose to or choose not to engage with your market. It just is (S.Stratten)
  • wusnews: Online conversations are the most raw, passionate thoughts of your customers. #2011Vision
  • patrickmgill: #2011vision the best marketing is creating awesome customer experiences @unmarketing
  • rgerschman: #2011vision “When does the ‘we are experiencing an unusually high call volume’ = the usual high call volume? Think about Customer service!!
  • BCAMA: “Every time you create a QR code and it does not go to a mobile page… a puppy dies.” @unmarketing #2011Vision ^NT
  • kelsey_bar: People spread “awesome”. They don’t spread “meh…” Great stuff from @unmarketing at #2011Vision
  • GusF: By 2013 50% of web access will be done on mobile phones – get your website mobile #2011vision
  • GillianShaw: Create awesome content 1st then SEO. Create your content for your audience, not for Google. @unmarketing #2011Vision
  • rgerschman: #2011vision @unmarketing social media success doesn’t exist… It’s just amplification. If you suck offline, you’ll suck even more online!
  • shirleyweir: Reminder: we do business with people we know, like and trust. Live it #2011Vision @unmarketing

Kerry Munro – Technology leader and visionary

  • GillianShaw: 72% Internet users say they’re exposed to too much advertising (could you buy a @vancouverSun please : ) ) #2011Vision
  • nicolb: “Strategy. Insights. Automation. 3 areas that are the biggest level of challenge today. ” @kerrymunrois #2011Vision /via @bcama
  • GillianShaw: Your customers will create new customers, all you have to do is take care of your existing customers, sez Kerry Munro #2011Vision
  • GusF: A social media strategy should be inline with your business strategy. Many have that disconnect #2011vision
  • BCAMA: “FB user value: spend, loyalty, brand affinity, acquisition cost, propensity to recommend, media value” @kerrymunrois #2011Vision ^NT
  • GusF: Since the core of any business is to drive sales, it’s important to understand the value of your “fan”. #2011vision
  • rgerschman: #2011vision Consider this: Friends & family continue to be the biggest influencers in ppl making purchase decisions.
  • fburrows: #2011Vision Bing and Google change their analytics daily-impossible to keep up, just focus strategically on what works for you.
  • BCAMA: “It’s all about being in that moment and creating the most efficient and optimal connection w/ the consumer.” @kerrymunrois #2011Vision ^NT

Scott Bedbury – Author of A New Brand World and former Marketing Executive at Nike and Starbucks

  • rgerschman: #2011Vision “Consumers are not just that into you. Look past your product to the world your consumers live in.” – Scott Bedbury
  • asilhouette: Worlds best brands connect themselves to timeless human needs that are both physical and emotional #2011vision bcama
  • G_Speaking: Cool. Original brainstorm map of Starbuck’s ‘the third place’. #BCAMA #2011vision http://t.co/hzmovdW
  • rgerschman: #2011vision Stand for something more than your product. Humanize yourself. Consider value, ethics & style. Tell stories.
  • Ian_Cruickshank: It’s what you do beyond your core product that actually defines you. Scott B #2011vision love it.
  • SuburbiaRetail: “At the heart of a brand is it’s relationship with employees.” – Scott Bedbury @bcama #2011vision
  • rgerschman: #2011Vision Physical brand touch points can do more than digital bytes. Who is representing your brand offline? Train, inspire & motivate.
  • kelsey_bar: Scott Bedbury: “Be fully present in the moments that matter most.” As true in business as it is in life. #2011Vision
  • k8senkow: “Stay forever curious. Don’t ever think you have all the answers.” Scott Bedbury at BCAMA #2011Vision Conference

Nikki Heller – Director of Marketing, Future Shop

  • timr03: Social shopping isn’t just online #2011vision
  • misscheryltan: “Social Shopping is ANY purchase influenced by your personal network (i.e. community forums)” Nikki Kellyer #2011Vision (via @bcama)
  • GillianShaw: Listening to people in social networks flipped Future Shop marketing plans for back to school. #2011Vision
  • BCAMA: The funnel before: http://ow.ly/i/bMHC & the funnel after is a loop: http://ow.ly/i/bMHL #2011Vision
  • codias: #2011vision #authenticity #authenticity #authenticity #authenticity #authenticity
  • erinpongracz: #NikkiHellyer just used #BBC “groundhog Alan” vid as an ex. of mrkters shouting msg into the void & not knowing ur aud. #Amazing #2011vision
  • elliottchun: Online and offline retail is merging. And, evenings & wkeds are dead. – Hellyer #2011Vision #FutureShop

John Ounpuu, Strategy Director at Blast Radius and Sarah Dickinson, VP Strategy at Blast Radius

  • Ian_Cruickshank: Traditional models work in traditional media – outside of traditional you have to be more creative and break some rules – #2011vision
  • codias: When you transcend categories, you elevate yourself beyond your category into a superlative. #2011vision
  • GusF: 3 steps to build meaningful relations – Foundation, Role, and Culture. #2011vision
  • BCAMA: “Gamefication – leaderboard scores, badges – moving out of the realm of games and into other areas.” John Ounpuu #2011Vision ^NT
  • BCAMA: “Finding your shared ideal. Understand role & live it. Build on relevant cultural currents. Execute boldly.” Sarah Dickinson #2011Vision ^NT
  • petequily: Social media can be an incredible tool but it can’t fix an acute internal problem. It may only make it worst. #2011vision
  • robynmichelles: Great insights from Blast Radius – understand the foundation of your brand & it’s role, then live it. Be culturally relevant. #2011Vision

Tod Maffin – One of North America’s leading digital marketing experts, CBC Radio Host

  • BCAMA: “By deconstructing viral videos, you can find 6 “markers” that can increase the chance of going viral.” @todmaffin #2011Vision ^NT
  • BCAMA: “#1 Audience, Content, Call to Action Matching: content must match audience. CTA must match content.” @todmaffin #2011Vision ^NT
  • BCAMA: “2. Successful viral campaigns are stripped down to a simple, single concept. Double Rainbow.” @todmaffin #2011Vision ^NT
  • misscheryltan: Successful viral videos are one of the following: Silly, Serious, or Stunning. @todmaffin #2011Vision
  • BCAMA: “3. Sentiment Factor (silly, serious or stunning). Dove was seeded entirely online: http://bit.ly/lsvEdV@todmaffin #2011Vision ^NT
  • BCAMA: “4. Reward sharing. Ex. Doritos unidentified flavour campaign, winner sharing Doritos profits.” @todmaffin #2011vision ^NT
  • BCAMA: “5. Embrace the unofficials. Do not hate them. Ex. Diet Coke & Mentos” @todmaffin #2011vision ^N
  • BCAMA: “6. Deliberate successive rounds. Need a certain # of impressions for people to take action. Ex. Shreddies” @todmaffin #2011Vision ^NT