Sunday, November 28, 2010

The Under Utilization of Social Media

Successful sales people usually focus on understanding their prospects demands/requirements in order to build a proposal that fit the prospects needs.   This level of feedback can only be gained through two way communication channels.  Some popular channels of two-way communication include person to person, by phone, email, and text message.  However, social media provides yet a new means to communicate with prospects and customers that if effectively leveraged can be utilized to provide not only a platform to promote its products and services but also a platform to gain feedback from customers to understand what customers want in terms of products, experiences, and services.  It befuddles me why firms don’t take full advantage of this new channel of communication.

A new poll from Netherlands based consultancy, Executive Learning Partnership, has found that while regular users strongly believe that social media has improved their relationships with customers, far fewer of those polled actually use it for business purposes.” Citing only 38% of the respondents to their survey say that they actually use social media for business purposes.

The ROI that social media provides far outweigh the drawbacks.   Sure a prospect or customer may post negative feedback about a firm’s products or services or maybe openly shared information is not something a firm wants its competitors to see.  But most business should agree that feedback itself is valuable rather negative or positive.  A firm should want to know what its prospects and customers are thinking, especially if it’s negative and could potential result in loss of business.
To take full advantage of the benefits social media provides a firm should have a “living” social media presents.  As such they should be able respond to inquiries within social medial much like inquiries can be responded to by phone, in person, or by email.   Social media is simply a new means of two way communication and it should be utilized as such.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

The Jury Is Still Out on Neuromarketing

Contrary to Joseph Turow beliefs, a professor of communication at the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania, neuromarketing “…will never enable marketing professionals to discover that Holy Grail of market research, a ‘buy button’ - some mythical region of the brain which need only be stimulated to compel consumers to purchase a product whether or not they actually want to do so! It will never be found because, of course, it does not exist!”1

Purchasing decisions are much more complex than what information can be taken from the technology available through EEG or iMRIs. “The idea is that somehow neuromarketing is going to be so much more powerful that, like zombies, we are all going to go out and buy soap,” Professor Wolpe says. “But that is just not realistic in terms of the way the brain works.”2 Sure, EEGs and iMRIs provide marketers information about the consumers responses to a particular add but it will not provide them the feedback they need to determine what it is that makes a consumer decide the way that they decide.

Firms such as EmSense, Sands Research, MindLab International and NeuroSense that specialize in neuromarketing techniques are riding this fad that in the short-term will provide a return. However, long-term the success of these firms will depend on their ability to diversify their product offerings.