brightedge post

Jim Yu had come far from growing up in an affordable housing unit in South Dakota—or so it seemed. He’d made his way to Silicon Valley, earning an MBA from Stanford University and a cushy job at Salesforce. But this landed Yu, his wife, Jamin, and newborn girl in a tiny 900-square foot condo in Foster City, where the region’s high cost-of-living eats up senior executive salaries. Like so many Silicon Valley dreamers, Yu wanted to change his fortunes and decided to bootstrap a startup out of his condo. This meant giving up a steady paycheck, stock options and lofty title, as well as lettingRead More →

rescue post

In the 2004 sci-fi movie “I, Robot,” detective Del Spooner (played by Will Smith) recalls a moment when a robot needed to provide the ultimate customer support. An accident had caused two cars to sink in a river, and the robot was tasked with saving either Spooner in one car or a girl, Sarah, in another. The robot chose Spooner. “I was the logical choice,” Spooner says, angrily. “It calculated that I had a 45 percent chance of survival. Sarah only had an 11 percent chance. That was somebody’s baby. Eleven percent is more than enough. A human being would’ve known that.” While we’re stillRead More →

messaging bot post

In 2008, Pizza Hut made a bold move in the mobile space by launching SMS ordering. Pizza lovers simply had to flag their favorite orders on Pizza Hut’s website and then tap out the text message, “send me my order.” The word “order” triggered pizzas to be made and delivered and credit cards charged. After a couple of years, SMS ordering was shut down. “In hindsight, it was way too early,” says Baron Concors, global chief digital officer of Pizza Hut. Eight years later, though, Concors is on the main stage at MobileBeat 2016 in San Francisco talking up Pizza Hut’s new ordering bot forRead More →

olympics post

In August, some 90,000 fans will pass through RIOgaleão Airport in Rio de Janeiro every day on their way to and from the Summer Olympics, and a new mobile app will help them navigate the airport’s busy hallways, shops and terminals. The mobile app is slick and easy to use (see below), and passengers should be pleased. But they’ll have no idea about the Herculean effort that went into it: a massive network overhaul, a mobile app appealing to diverse cultures, Internet of Things (IoT) technology in the background, and mountains of data used to improve the customer experience—all tied together under a ticking clock.Read More →

bubble post

In the months leading up to last week’s big news that Vista Equity Partners would be acquiring Marketo for $1.79 billion and Salesforce buying Demandware for $2.8 billion, Silicon Valley was awash with rumors of a bursting bubble. The bubble comes from a marketing tech explosion that has given rise to more than 3,800 vendors, billions of venture capital dollars, sky-high valuations and a whole lot of shaky balance sheets. Now marketing tech appears to be on the verge of a shakeout, a frenzy of merger-and-acquisition activity, the inevitable fall back to earth. A sudden squeeze in venture capital in the tech sector earlier thisRead More →

mobile mountain post 2

In 2002, world-class mountaineer Alison Levine attempted to reach the summit of Mount Everest but came up short by about 200 feet, turned back by bad weather. On her second climb eight years later, she got caught in a snowstorm 26,000 feet high in the infamous “Death Zone,” took off her goggles and felt her corneas starting to freeze. When the storm subsided, she pressed on. At 8 a.m., Levine stood at the top of the world. “Fear is OK, but complacency will kill you,” Levine told marketers at Marketing Nation Summit in Las Vegas last month. “You have to be able to react quicklyRead More →

aragon post

For marketers swept up and tossed around in the mobile wave, which includes just about everyone, it would be nice to have an idea of what’s coming next. And the second mobile wave is following fast upon, in the form of chatbot-powered messaging and mobile-driven Internet of Things, says CEO Jim Lundy at Aragon Research. “Executives need to understand mobile,” Lundy says. Artificially intelligent chatbots are making their way to mobile devices and messaging. There are 100 billion messages sent every day. Messaging itself has grown from instant messaging to mobile messaging to messaging apps. Soon more of these apps will be powered by chatbots. ByRead More →

dupont post

In Germany, a farmer drives his tractor and works the land like generations before him. The tractor is equipped with an iPad docking station. There’s a smartphone in his pocket. On the seat lies a 400-page book of DuPont’s product info for keeping insects, crop diseases and weeds at bay. Why isn’t a sleek, mobile app providing crop-protection content instead of a heavy, outdated book? DuPont spent 12 weeks creating a mobile app and converting the book’s voluminous pages into HTML files. Now when a new crop gets registered on a product label, the German farmer has the right information at his fingertips when applyingRead More →

digital transform post

Jim Sinur came up with Gartner’s famous hype cycle, and his book “Digital Transformation: Innovate or… Die Slowly” is expected to hit shelves this spring. Companies wanting to become digital businesses must make a leap of faith and start a transformation that may take years. It’s the kind of transformation where everyone has to be on board. Executives will have to accept that there are no lines of attribution tying employee performance to digital success—at least not yet. Managers will have the odd task of incentivizing employees to run so fast that they might stumble. And employees must stop trying to be perfect, because theyRead More →

Mobile Banking post

There’s a famous scene in the 1994 thriller movie The Professional when Norman Stansfield, played by Gary Oldman, learns that a critical mission has gone awry and calls for backup. “I told you. Benny, bring me everyone,” he says calmly. Benny asks, “What do you mean ‘everyone’?” Suddenly, Stansfield goes ballistic: “Everyone!!!” At Adobe Summit 2016 in Las Vegas last month, speaker Giles Richardson, head of digital analytics at the Royal Bank of Scotland, played this movie clip to show both the urgency and need to have lots of people at a company working together to test, analyze and optimize the digital customer journey. InRead More →