Move from Perfection to Excellence

In the Coronavirus age (yes it’s just six months but seems like an age!) there are great challenges and no “re-opening” strategy seems to be perfect. Organizations can just try to do their best (be excellent) instead of trying to be perfect. The virus is invisible and thus it brings the “Excellence vs. Perfection” dilemma into sharp focus.

Why marketing is about customer value – and not social media

Ask anyone – What is marketing? And you’ll get answers like advertising, social media or mobile marketing. Others, who have taken a formal marketing class, will say 4 P’s (Product, Price, Place, Promotion). This is surprising and at the root of any marketing effort that fails or provides a less than hoped results. And as anyone who has tried to market anything has learnt – marketing results tend to disappoint. Unless, the marketer is razor focussed on the customer and their perceived value.

B2B opportunities after COVID

States like New York have started to reopen after reaching low COVID infection rates. Here are some thoughts about opportunities for B2B marketer:

Happy July 4th: Why think about life after the COVID Pandemic?

Tomorrow is July 4th, 2020 the American Independence day.  July 4th is the American Independence Day and a day of hope and freedom for people.Due to the recent spike in American coronavirus cases, traditional firework displays have been cancelled in regions where there is an upsurge of cases. However, there are some options to watch fireworks  and here is a nice list of virtual fire work displays. Here is our July 4th post from 2008, in the midst of the great recession.
It’s really important to start thinking about life after the global coronavirus (COVID) pandemic…. because like the great recession, we will overcome this.  Here is why we should all be hopeful this 4th of July:

Why Reopening America in the Summer of 2020?

Today all US states have reopened partially after two months of lockdown. This has left many of our readers worldwide wondering why America is reopening when Coronavirus infections and deaths keep increasing ? Here are some thoughts on this question:

Why marketing attribution continues to be a problem

The backstory starts in the pre-internet age when sales folks were very reluctant to adopt technology because they wanted to keep their leads to themselves. After all, commissions were earned depending on who “closed” the sale. Similarly in direct mail and catalogs, the coupon code and a mailed in  order identified which mailing worked. As digital and internet marketing developed, the legacy metrics were adopted and “last click attribution” became important. If you think about it “last click” or the ad that you clicked mirrored the “sales closing” and fitted neatly with the old direct mail coupon code model. All you had to do was to put a code on the ad, email  and upon checkout just match the ad to the transaction and “Eureka” you had attributed the ad spend, specific email or ad to the purchase. 

Forever 21 : What is your strength – that customers value?

It is sad to see that Forever 21 filed for bankruptcy. Their backstory is fascinating and the 5 minute video backstory of Korean immigrants achieving the “American Dream” by Business Insider is worth watching. 
Unlike the typical sad “decline of US malls”  story and rise of “online retail” the Forever 21 story has important lessons for all businesses. It is also an eerie reminder of the the New Coke fiasco,  To recap, Coca Cola did not realize in the eighties that customers did not drink Coke for taste but  it was all about being American – a much deeper meaning.

Purpose of a Corporation : What every American needs to know

The most exciting thing for business over the 2019 summer was when the Business Roundtable put out a Statement on the “Purpose of the Corporation.” Signed by 181 American CEO’s all of whose brands are well known to consumers or businesses, the statement reflects the changing times. Download the  Roundtable Statement here and check out the 181 signatures from many CEO’s of companies you are already familiar with.American politicians have been telling us what we know to be true – the “American Dream” eludes most folks today due to rapid changes in globalization and technology. Thankfully, leaders of American businesses have taken notice and have decided to move their focus from the “next quarter” to “long term shareholder value” on the shareholder element and have included all stakeholders in the “Purpose of the Corporation”. The times have truly changed in the last decade with all stakeholders having a voice on social media and the old dictum of “just focus on shareholder (short-term) value”  can no longer work.  See Eric Posner’s article “Milton Friedman was wrong” in the Atlantic.

The recycling crisis -what should you NOT be putting in your recycle bin

Monday was   Earth Day and it’s a good time to think about the recycling crisis facing the US. Last year China that took in most of the developed world’s recyclable trash decided to up it’s quality standards.  Do recyclables going into  the recycle bin have quality standards ?- the surprised reader might wonder. Yes they do as this article in Mercury News explains. It is timely for all to understand what you should NOT be putting in the recycle bin.

How TJX and Costco drive foot traffic in the digital age

The TJX group (including brands like TJMax, Marshalls, HomeGoods etc.) and Costco seem to be always crowded. And when you look at long checkout lines you know they must be doing something right in the digital age.