Three C’s of Marketing Today

The Three C’s of Marketing today are Customer Experience, Customization, and Content Management/Optimization.

The First of Three C’s – Customer Experience

Customer Experience has been around for a while, but in today’s market, it’s essential and omnipresent.   Mobile has a lot to do with customer experience, because of the constant use, “always open” culture, and intimate setting.

What does all that mean?

Customer experience is NOT just customer service.

Three C's customer experience woman shopping onlineA customer’s experience with your brand and business is everything all combined in one – your branding, your customer service, your pricing, your billing – all of it.   How does that customer experience your brand?  Do they prefer email or a shopping app?  Are they connecting with you by smart phone searches or apps?   Do you give free shipping, are you price competitive, what is the culture of your brand?  How is your billing, it’s it easy, fast and painless?  Do products arrive on time, in nice packaging?  If there is a problem how is your customer service?  How do you encourage your customer to shop you again?

Every single step from first hearing about you to paying their bill and problem resolution is the customer experience and at any point along that timeline, they can disappear.   To encourage a great experience and to have a flawless execution requires every single department in your business to be on board and doing their best.

So you can see why the customer experience is the first of the Three C’s.  In the past two years, Customer Experience has been the largest growth concern in business marketing and it looks like it will continue that way through the rest of the year and into 2016.  (Adobe Quarterly Digital Intelligence Briefing: Digital Trends 2015 )

Second of Three C’s – Customization

Again, mobile here is going to  play a big part.   How much customizing can your customer do with your brand / product?   Do you have a shopping app that allows them to save their favorites, put things on a wish list and input things they like?  When they put in things they like does your app send them similar items?   Can they customize the product itself – engraving a name, picking a color, choosing to bill to one address and ship to another?

The more your brand knows about your customer’s preferences AND offers options to meet those preferences the more they will interact  with your brand and buy.

Three C's customization make up bagA good example of this is some of the make up box companies.    (Pictured here is a “glam bag” from Ipsy).  You fill out a profile of what your skin color is, skin type, favorite colors, whether you like experimenting or not, your over all style, etc.   Then you pay $10 a month and these companies ship full size sample sized products to you. They  do this with the hope that you will buy those products through their website or app.   The brands they carry and put in those sample boxes, give them deep discounts, also with the hope that you will buy the product full price from the app or from your favorite make up shopping store or website.

These apps are overly abundant.  You find many that sell clothes, shoes, make up, etc.  The new arrival in the last year has been food categories – especially health food snacks.

How can this concept help your business?  Adobe’s Trend report also shows that business to business companies (B2B) are lagging behind their retail counterparts.   Do you sell supplies?  How might you take the make up bag idea and apply it to pens, paper, sticky notes, etc?

Again according to Adobe’s white paper, Customization is the second most important area of growth for businesses going forward.   Which makes it number 2 on our list of Three C’s.

The Third C – Content Management / Optimization

Adobe Quarterly Digital Intelligence Briefing: Digital Trends 2015 – lists Content Marketing as the third most important business concern and that makes it number three on our list of the Three C’s of Marketing  today.  In fact – Almost 40% of B2B marketers selected content optimization as a top priority for 2015.

And the concern isn’t just content management but content optimization.   How is your content perceived across channels?  Do you post the same thing on your Facebook, on your website, on your mobile app and Pinterest?  Is your Pinterest user the same type of person to be found on LinkedIn?

I have to make a side note here.  NO Facebook and Pinterest posts are NOT translating well to LinkedIn.   I have read blog after blog begging people to stop putting personal and feel good posts on LinkedIn and to keep it professional.  And I swear by this advice.

Side note – LinkedIn is not for fun, it’s buttoned up, professional, blue suit and a power tie kind of social media.

Back to our third of the Three C’s:  content management and content optimization. Content management is making sure that you have new and relevant content on your website for search engines to find you and push your site up the page over others.  This involves knowing how to write for the different audiences, knowing where to share on social media, and knowing how to get a click through to your website from social media.

Dollarphotoclub_80484857Content optimization is learning from those posts.   What made people click?  What content was liked what content was shared?   How was the engagement versus sales?  Was the content designed to reach a lot of people? (getting eyeballs)  Or were you aiming at engaging people?  (likes and shares or perhaps to download an app)  And everyone’s favorite of course is to get a direct response, to make someone shop and BUY.  There are different techniques for each and different data points to look at for each.

The nature of the beast is that content meant to reach will get more people, less interaction and few sales.   Content meant to get engagement, will get fewer people, more interaction and a few sales.   Content meant to get a direct response, will get fewer people, more interaction and the most sales (per person).

The businesses that will be succeeding in the future will be those with the best strategies for the Three C’s – Customer Experience, Customization, Content Management / Optimization.

While I help mostly with Content Management / Optimization, I’m happy to consult on all three.

If you have found this information helpful, I hope you will share it to your favorite place.

Generation Z – Quick Takeaway

Thank God.   Seriously.   I like this Generation. Forget all the quirkiness you know about the Millennials. Generation Z is a refreshing change.

Here’s some quick info on what Gen Z is all about:

They want to find their dream job, but being financially stable is their main aspiration.  They know that the millennials have a bad reputation and they want to be known for working hard and being able to communicate in person, specifically with older adults.

They are risk averse, practical and realistic.  They’ve learned from their Gen X parents and while they have an entrepreneurial reputation, it’s not out of a desire to make it rich but out of necessity of being employed.

What has formed this practical practice among Generation Z is that they have grown up post 9/11.   They have never known a time when the US was not at war.   They also have been through a long recession / depression and aren’t used to boom spending.

Generation Z at workThey don’t have a 8 second attention span, they have an 8 second filter.  What does that mean?  Generation Z has grown up with the internet, social media, apps and more.  They process so much information on a daily basis.  They know that information is limitless but their time is not and so they expect to get what they need in those quick 8 seconds.

They also are very aware of social media, heavy users of it, but do not want to be defined by it.  Generation Z wants to make a distinction between their personal use of social media and building a professional brand for themselves.   And they are brand managers extraordinaire.

Generation Z is also more independent and solution-oriented,  having been raised at a time when single parents,  blended families and divorce is common.  They are more racially diverse.   They are open-minded, having lived through gay marriage becoming law, a two term black president and have tackled bullying online and on the playground.

Thinking of marketing to Generation Z?

Generation Z Tech SavvyThink about putting them in charge.   Think about online shopping.  They prefer customizable apps, and personal online shoppers.  They are less likely to go to the Mall and more likely to belong to several shopping sites.

Generation Z are acutely attuned to being “sold” and can tune you out quickly.  Once you have them, they tend to be loyal.  Price can be a way to break in to their mindset, with three for two coupons, but will not be enough to garner loyalty.  They love to create and design and personalize, so items with these options will appeal to them.  And it should be seamless, easy, and quick.  If shopping is too difficult, if check out is to cumbersome, you will lose the sale.




Forget Millennials. Is Your Workplace Ready for Generation Z?  Inc. And Adecco Staffing 2015

What Is Generation Z, And What Does It Want? Fast Company 2015

Make Way for Generation Z   NYT March 2015

Move Over Millenials, Gen Z is in Charge.  Forbes Aug. 2015

Content and SEO – Again

Content is King

Many people have for many years now been saying that for SEO, “Content is King”.  But what does that really mean and why is so important to a B2B company?

This is a basic article, so let me spell some things out for those who are new to all of this.

SEO – search engine optimization – making your website the best it can be for success on Google and other search engines, preferably a spot on the first page.

Content – the information on your website, including pictures, picture tags, etc.   But most importantly, the text and preferably blogs.

B2B – Business To Business.  Companies that sell products / services to other businesses as opposed to the general public.

It’s great if you sell HP or Xerox items and you have the text from that item mention the brand and pictures that mention the brand.  But this will only go so far.   Remember there are only so many slots on the first page of Google.


Content and Search

As Google creates smarter algorithms, content becomes so much more important.  What search engines want on their first page, are websites that give the searcher everything they need regarding the search they just made.   To this end, the search engine will look at all those keywords and meta data and links.  But they will also look at your content.

Do you have new content?  Is the new content relative to the searcher’s needs?  Is the content unique?

If the answer to those questions – any of the three – is no, you’re going to slip down the page to other pages.

The reason this is key to B2B companies is that so much of your content is product and price.  Any competitor, in your city, in your state, in your country, in the world, carrying the same products will have the same or similar content.  How are you any different?  Why should Google move you to the top?


New content will move the needle.  Now you are different from all those other companies because you have something more recent on your site than the rest.


If a searcher is looking for a tablet to use for business, what information on your site will help them make a decision to buy and specifically buy from you?  Did you answer with a product name, or a discounted price?  Do you think they can get that same price somewhere else?

relevantContent.   Reviews of your service, testimonials of happy customers.  Forget free shipping what about delivery and training and service?  How about your personal review and recommendation of the product including why you use it?  These are things you can’t put in a product description, brand name text or price.  These are the things that will make a customer comfortable with buying from you in person, and the same goes for online.   And the more Google sees that, the more Google likes your site.

As an added bonus, relevant content gets shared more often, giving you links to your website and better social media engagement!


Here is where  you CAN NOT cheat.   DO NOT pick up a review written on another website.  Do not pull text from an expert.  Because repetitive content gets ignored.   If Google sees the same article on 15 websites, it assumes the original author is the only site that counts.

See?  Original author.  Write your own content.  You can have the same ideas about the product, even share a quote or two.  But the content should be yours, authored by you to again move that needle.


Where does this new, relevant, unique content go?

I hear you.  You are too busy to be reviewing the products you have to sell.  You hate writing.  You can’t trust the receptionist to do it and the sales person rather sell than market for you.  And once it’s written, where does it go?  What do I do with it then?

Blog_(1)It goes on your blog.   I can’t even imagine a business today having a website without a blog.  Blogs are not just about your favorite recipe or what toys are great for your kid, anymore.

Blogs are where you prove your expertise, and ultimately prove you are worthy of your customers spending their dollars.

When a customer can justify spending the money with your company some crazy cool things start to happen.  They really no longer care about price.   They will recommend you in person, and online.   They will follow you on social media and share your info with others.  And the next thing you know, you have more customers.  You also have more social shares.  And more links coming to your site.

And what do you know.  Looky there.   Google moved you up.

One word of caution.   This isn’t magic.  It doesn’t happen overnight.  Like growing your business, you are now growing your Google / online reputation.  That takes time.

And one personal observation.  The less “salesy” you are in your content, the more credible you seem and the more likely shares and links will happen.

I’m not a writer, I’m a business owner.

I know.   That’s why I’m here.  Or my competitors.  Or your marketing agency or service.  There are many people who will give you new content for your site.  You’ll need to weigh the service provided versus the price you will pay.

I would be honored if you chose me.