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 New iPhone Photo App Changes The Way You Go Shopping

Friday, December 17th, 2010

The Next Step in Customer Engagement?
By CM Arnold

Contrary to popular belief, the customer is not always right, but an unhappy customer can do a lot of damage. Hence, the implementation of telephone and internet surveys by retailers like Macy’s, CVS and Walmart.

More and more, sales receipts include toll free numbers and website addresses accompanied by calls to action encouraging customers to give their opinions. How many people actually do that, even if they had negative experiences?

In many cases it is not convenient or possible to find a customer service person in the store, and in most cases, if and when you do find someone to speak with, he is either incapable of solving the problem or doesn’t want to help you, said Marc Karasu, founder of MeasuredUp.com, who believes his company’s new “Hotline App” for the iPhone will solve that problem. The Hotline App allows you to “document” something at the store that is not right: long lines, incorrect prices, messy aisles, dangerous situations etc. Likewise the App can be used to “report” a complaint or say thanks for a job well done.

Customer satisfaction is a key element to any company’s success. The instant gratification aspect of MeasuredUp.com’s new app, which would actually allow a customer with a complaint to receive a response from someone in management within minutes, might increase the number of people who give honest and constructive feedback. On the other hand, such a feature could lead to a massive influx of frivolous complaints that might otherwise have been posted on someone’s Twitter or Facebook page. Caveat venditor.

Read the article here

 Small-Business Marketing Strategies

Tuesday, October 19th, 2010

New small businesses pop up every day trying to get footholds in larger markets. In order to attract desired patrons, they must market themselves in unique, fun and interesting ways to a wide variety of consumers. In today’s world, effective consumer marketing strategies always include using the Internet, with online surveys or reviews playing a large part.

If you are a small business, it is important that you leverage the Internet to better market your company, said Marc Karasu, founder of Measuredup.com, in an e-mail interview.

Karasu shared his thoughts on how small businesses can use Internet marketing to broaden their customer horizons.

1. Take charge of what is said about your business online. Unbenownst to you, there may be many unflattering things being said about your business that you need to refute or correct, Karasu warned.

2. Consumers use the Internet for shopping research. If your company does not come up near the top of searches on sites like Google or, worse, has bad reviews associated with it, then you could be losing out on new sales.

3. Build a great customer service brand to increase sales and engender customer loyalty. It’s more important than ever for small-business owners to join the conversation online and help to manage their companies’ reputations.

Establishing a good rapport with consumers is probably one of the biggest challenges that faces small-business owners as they try to break into larger markets. Providing quality products and services are only half the battle. The other half, as Karasu pointed out, is creating effective marketing campaigns, which include taking the time to create comprehensive consumer surveys that will allow small-business owners to know going in just what consumers require.

Read article here:
http://survey.cvent.com/blog/cvent-survey/0/0/small-business-marketing-strategies

 Corporate Branding

Tuesday, September 28th, 2010

How to Set Things Right

“The key issue is for a company to understand that some upfront work must be done to create the brand positioning around an agreed-upon value proposition. Having a clear and agreed-upon value proposition allows for a crisp brand positioning to emerge, making it much easier to create marketing and advertising that is compelling to consumers,” said Marc Karsau of MAKtaste.com.

Jen Dorman, marketing coordinator for Niagara Blower Heat Transfer Solutions/Kathabar Dehumidification Systems, believes that “keeping consistency with the brand is essential to success. There is sometimes a brand champion like the marketing director or company founder. If he does not communicate his brand essence to everyone else at the company, it can easily fade away. If the brand is not enforced, it deteriorates,” she cautioned.

Corporate branding gone wrong can destroy not only a company’s bottom line but its overall image with customers and clients, too. Learning what works and putting a plan into action will increase revenue and generate a larger customer base by instilling trust and confidence in your company’s brand.

Read more at Suite101: Corporate Branding Done the Wrong Way http://www.suite101.com/content/corporate-branding-done-the-wrong-way-a289108#ixzz10q9PxmRj

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