Sunday, April 27, 2008

Marketing Musings: Don't Be a Wooden Waiter

Note to servers all over America. Leave me alone.

Back when tipping was actually optional hospitality staff had to work as hard as possible to maximize their income. The problem today is that tips are expected and let’s face it, most people tip almost 20% regardless of how the service actually was.

So you are going to get the 20%, all you have to do is be nice. Stay out of the way, don’t interrupt every 8 minutes – we really are OK and if the food does happen to suck, we’ll let you know. Be there when we are looking around, and make it personal. Check on our meals for sure and remember who ordered what.

While I am whining, what ever happened to leaving plates on the table until everyone has finished eating? I’ve been at more than a few places where I am the only one still eating and my friends are being offered a dessert menu.

Truth is I don’t blame you I blame the person who owns the restaurant. They should be focusing on the customer experience and stopping you (called training!) from asking canned questions that no diner every seriously answers. You know them -“are we doing OK here?” … “Sure, thanks (go away, I just lost my train of thought because of you) – sound familiar?

Starting today, throw out the very notion of what you think it means to serve and be attentive. The owner might even notice; even if she doesn’t, someone will, and you’ll be soon on your way.

Marketing Musings: Jobs on Life

Still one of the best speeches I have ever heard - life is short. Stay Hungry, Stay Foolish.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Marketing Musings: No More Wrap Parties?

Since Facebook opened up its platform to third party developers over 16000 apps have been thrust upon the membership. A whole new industry sprang up not just in the development of the apps, but also the marketing and optimization of them, many of which are already marketing initiatives in themselves. The old advertising model ADIA (Attention Interest Desire Action) is still very much in play:

Get a Facebook user’s attention and interest, build enough desire to actually interact with your service then, have them take action, preferably in the form of inviting other friends.

What is a little crazy (as in good crazy) is just how measurable this medium has become. Many months ago I wrote that there was nowhere to hide in this new world of marketing. Everything is measurable to the nth degree and clients are increasingly understanding this, and therefore not only demanding the statistics but of course, asking why they are not higher/lower/declining/inclining etc etc.

That an electronic medium is more measurable is not exactly CNN material. What is interesting is that the entire planning/creative/production model is history. It is being replaced with a series of planning / creative/ production cycles that are constantly repeated throughout the initiative’s life. In other words, you no longer spend 6 months planning and designing a campaign which is then thrust upon the world in “set and forget” mode (with results possibly dissected a few months later); today you get what you can out there and using real time numbers you review, tweak, alter, update, enhance “on the fly” so that your actions of the past 24 hours are potentially altering your prospect’s behavior in real time.

This new world is labor intensive for the folks working on "the campaign” and certainly not news to Google advertisers – after all, they have been able to change their text based ads on the fly for years – but this “on the flyism” has infiltrated all aspects of on-line marketing and has been exposed so granularly by the massive Facebook user base and the ability to see how in real time, changes to these apps can dramatically affect your end goal.