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iBeacon: It's Time for Mobile Marketers to See the Light
February 13, 2014
Never mind the Seattle Seahawks completely smoking the Broncos -- Super Bowl XLVIII may go down in history as the turning point for iBeacon. Apple's iBeacon is an indoor positioning system based on Bluetooth Low Energy technology. Its proximity-detection capabilities enable it to send relevant information -- including, most enticingly, targeted ads -- to a mobile device.
Google Glass Could Bring CRM Into Focus
February 06, 2014
Google last week debuted several trendy eyeglass frames for Glass, shedding its dorky look while accommodating prescription lenses. The more natural look means consumers likely will be more accepting of Glass once it becomes generally available -- assuming the price is right. The new Glass frames and support for corrective lenses are also a boon for CRM.
Betting Big Bucks on the Real Omnichannel Deal
February 04, 2014
CRM vendors for years have been acknowledging the need for omnichannel support while bending over backwards to explain how their particular applications or product suites excelled at providing that missing link. A funny thing began to happen at the end of the 20th century. Instead of talking about it, CRM vendors started doing something about it. One by one, they made some strategic acquisitions.
Mobile CRM's Great Big Internet of Things Challenge
January 30, 2014
Shortly after Google's $3.2 billion acquisition of Nest was announced, Nest CEO Tony Fadell felt obliged to clarify something for its users: Any changes to the company's privacy policy would be opt-in. Also, Nest would be transparent about those changes, he said. It's questionable whether Fadell can keep such a promise, though, unless it's written into the deal.
T-Mobile Gives Customers No-fee Checking
January 23, 2014
T-Mobile USA on Wednesday launched Mobile Money, a money management application for smartphones that is meant to be used in conjunction with a reloadable T-Mobile Visa Prepaid Card. There is no charge for activation, monthly maintenance, in-network ATM withdrawals, or for replacing lost or stolen cards. There are also no minimum balance requirements.
Smart Marketing in a BYOD World
January 21, 2014
Bring Your Own Device, or BYOD, is an established trend at many U.S. enterprises, and it's likely to continue to grow. Mobile marketing is an established channel through which many U.S. companies reach customers and prospective customers -- and it also is expected to grow. Is 2014 the year the twain will meet? Will marketers begin targeting consumers at work?
Omni-Channel Retailing Keeps Amazon in the Lead
January 09, 2014
A short while ago, few people had heard of omni-channel commerce, also known as omni-channel retailing. Today, however, if you were to ask most retail executives, you'd no doubt find that they are well-informed about the subject. In fact, our most ubiquitous brick-and-mortar retailer, Walmart, is currently quite immersed in this relatively new phenomenon.
Will 2014 Be the Year Mobile CRM Goes Omni-Channel?
January 06, 2014
There was no end to the enterprise interest in mobile CRM in 2013. From apps to innovative text marketing campaigns to self-service tablet applications for B2B industries, companies were gleefully trying out new pilots and experimenting with new technologies. Why? Simply this: Computing has reached an inflection point. Desktops are just one vehicle offering access to the Internet.
The Emerging Real-Time Business Traveler Market Takes Flight
December 17, 2013
The Federal Communications Commission last week voted to reconsider the ban on mobile phone calls during airplane flights, unleashing a collective cry of angst from travelers not wishing to be forced to listen to the tedious conversations of neighboring passengers. The move suggests a new opportunity may open up for mobile marketers targeting business travelers in real time.
Email Marketing for the Holidays, Part 2: Crafting a Compelling Call to Action
December 10, 2013
There's no doubt email marketing has become nonnegotiable for retailers during the holiday season, and that's particularly true on the mobile side. Mobile emailed offers are also playing bit roles in other strategies, such as showrooming. Retailers have learned not to push against this trend but to fight back by targeting shoppers while they are actually in the store.
Email Marketing for the Holidays, Part 1: Making the Right Mobile Impression
December 03, 2013
Email marketing will be a key strategy in retailers' advertising playbooks this holiday season, but not just any email. Increasingly, it is becoming clear that more consumers are reading emails via their mobile devices -- in many cases, only that way. They are also using their mobile devices in stores for last-minute product research, and that includes the emailed offers from local merchants.
Keep Holiday Shoppers Happy, in 3 Easy Steps
November 21, 2013
This holiday season, everything from Nerf N-Strike Elite Hail-Fire Blasters to Doc McStuffins dolls and even diamond jewelry will be purchased via mobile devices to a greater extent than ever before. In fact, mobile shopping will surpass the growth of all other channels during the upcoming holiday season, eMarketer has predicted, as more and more consumers change they way they purchase gifts.
Tablets and CRM, Part 2: Revolution in the Making
November 19, 2013
GE Capital has an iPad app, based on Salesforce.com, that integrates geospatial data to let mobile sales reps know which customers need attention and where they are. It is a simple, yet impressive example of a company using tablets and CRM functionality to improve its internal productivity. While appreciating its capabilities, many companies would not put the necessary energy into developing it.
Tablets and CRM, Part 1: A Plus for Productivity
November 12, 2013
The CRM case for tablets is quite clear: Workers are more mobile than ever and need to be able to access their systems on the go. Ditto customers and the workers who service them while on the go. Tablets are more robust tools than smartphones and allow for even greater functionality. Somehow overlooked in this business case, though, is the productivity factor.
Harvest Customer Intelligence Through Smart Surveying
November 07, 2013
Satisfaction surveys can be much more than a yardstick to measure customer opinion or an extra channel for customer support. The optimal survey presents an opportunity to uncover important insights about your business process and drive real improvements in the organization. Before you can start reaping the customer intelligence benefits that result, however, you have to lay the right groundwork.
Mobile CRM Design, Part 2: Refining the M-Commerce Experience
November 05, 2013
Now that mobile app developers have the basics of user-friendly design down, we've moved into the m-commerce industrial age, according to Pradeep U.N., Symphony Teleca's vice president and global head of design and innovation. Specifically, the mobile app vendors and retailers that rely on this channel are now experimenting with more sophisticated tactics.
ZipRealty Brings CRM to Real Estate Agents on the Go
November 04, 2013
ZipRealty recently released a mobile CRM app that complements its custom-built Zap online CRM system. While the mobile version, dubbed "mobile Zap," has the same functionality as its online desktop counterpart, it was designed with an eye to accommodating real estate agents' on-the-go schedules, said Jamie Wilson, the company's senior vice president of technology.
Making Feedback Mobile
November 01, 2013
Businesses and consumers instinctively understand the importance of customer feedback. Customer engagement represents a potential source of continuous improvement and competitive advantage for businesses. Consumers want to be heard and shape the products and services that impact them. I believe the creation of a virtuous customer feedback loop may represent the greatest transformative opportunity in business today.
Mobile CRM Design, Part 1: Different Devices, Different Rules
October 29, 2013
Most mobile app developers today have the basics of e-commerce design down pat. Increasingly, they are now thinking about the psychology of the user and how that should be factored into a mobile site or app's design. That's where testing becomes essential. "The features and functionalities of smartphones are inherently different from those on tablet devices," said Maxymiser's Daniel Toubian.
In-App Processing: It's Not Just About the Money Anymore
October 15, 2013
In-application features have been all about revenue so far, but as the technology evolves and mobile becomes ever more entrenched in consumers' psyches, the in-app phenomenon will likely spread to other forms of customer outreach as well, including messaging. First, though, let's talk about the money. Some 43 percent of mobile gamers have made purchases via an in-app mechanism, according eMarketer.
Constant Contact Kicks It Up a Notch
October 14, 2013
Constant Contact has rolled out enhancements to its platform, beefing up functionality in its reporting tools, customer tracking and reporting, and mobility options, as well as in a library tool designed to make storing and using content easier for users. The upgrades are a culmination of a lot of effort to develop features that Constant Contact sees the market adopting.
Groupon Adds a Dash of CRM to Its Breadcrumb POS App
October 10, 2013
On Wednesday Groupon announced that it has added new CRM features to its Breadcrumb point-of-sale app with the potential to drive traffic and improve customer relations for Groupon merchants. Customer tracking, for instance, is one of the new features now included in Breadcrumb. The software tracks customers, stores their contact information, analyzes purchase behaviors and records notes on their preferences.
'Tis the Time for Mobile Marketers to Grease Gears
October 08, 2013
With so much riding on the holiday season for retailers, marketers pull out all the stops. This year, the latest ad technologies are being put to the test in the mobile realm. Retailers need to have a landing page optimized for mobile, and they need to prepare for an onslaught of visitors, suggested Chris Kivlehan, vice president of account management at INetU.
inContact 13.2 Helps Agents Make a Personal Connection
October 07, 2013
inContact recently debuted the second major release this year of its cloud contact center software. Version 13.2 offers new call prediction technology, mobile functionality and a new agent console that was written natively on Force.com for Salesforce.com users. There are other features and upgrades as well, noted Madelyn Gengelbach, director of market intelligence at inContact.

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