Tuesday, January 05, 2016

2016: The Year of Emotion (our CX mission)

We are at the beginning of another year full of boundless opportunity to continue to advocate for and improve customer experience. To kick off the new year, Bruce Temkin has published has annual listing of CX trends and I love that has posited that 2016 is (or will be) "The Year of Emotion."  Sounds great!
In his post for this, Bruce says, "Historically, emotion has been an underserved area-as you can see in our new infographic, Customer Experience Needs More Emotion. However, this year we expect companies to start explicitly considering emotions as part of their customer experience efforts."

He has also produced an awesome infographic to help us visually-centric media consumers get emotional with this information more easily.  Imagine a year where customer experience professionals end up in tears of joy for having transformed their brands and companies into the most amazing, sensitive, touchy-feely friends we need in times of duress (let's face it, we usually call or talk to customer experience with problems, right?).


 To back this up, he also suggests you dig into three other new pieces of research:
Overall, this is one of my fave analysis shares ever from Bruce, and I hope we can live up to his expectations for all of this year.  ;-)  Pass the Kleenex.

Thursday, December 31, 2015

That's a rap...2015

Lots of change and transformation
No shortage of strange or bad information
Hard to land on our feet every time
Easier to say if the words just rhyme...

I am reasonably surprised to be in as great spirits, with so much optimism and a sincerely big smile on my face and a warm heart here for the last few hours of 2015.  I am glad this year is over actually.

And I am going to kick 2016's ass to the curb to make up for the compromises and forgiveness it takes me to get here still dancing. 

The good news is that in all that has transpired over the past twelve months I squirreled away enough hours in the studio to get some great work to an almost done state.

The even better news is that I finally have my life the way it always should have been.  I learned that the light at the end of the tunnel is behind you, that what you need you always had, and that where you are going you have already been or at least seen.  I forgot some important things and accepted some pretty unacceptable things that got me on the wrong track, but I am back on the high road again and I am ready to kick ass.

I wish everyone all the best and I hope that we all get what we deserve in 2016.  I love all my friends, all my family as it is now, and most of all I love my new old life and all the promise it holds for me and everyone around me in the coming years.   Loving ourselves gives us the right to love others, and as such I can now love you all again.

I love what you do.

I love who you all have become.

I love what we all do.

I love when we do it together.

I love what I am about to do.

I love who I am going to do it with.

Let's do this.

Happy New Year.

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Boomers vs. Millenials. Uh huh. Good one, GenX!!! BTW, that was a bit of a dick move there.

Every GenX occupant knows the best defence is a good offence - that is 100% GenX right there.

This is why I find it interesting that so many GenX denizens are out there on the misinformation campaign trail regarding the lockup between Boomers and Millenials. I present here this sarcastic, mostly fictitious, but amusing enough to get us to share it, if not only because we (millennial and boomers) are feeling over sensitive on this issue thanks to the smear campaign.

Technically the defence will rest that any actual generational rub is directly between both GenX and Boomers - sheesh remember that?!?!?! - and GenX and Millenials, their immediate peers who are actually them down while they grab the glory up in Boomer town and take their larger share of the profits (as they always have since achieving degrees status) out of both ends of this equation.

Click the vertical comic strip here on your left (should be there and should be fine as long as GenX has been approving millennial to adopt the latest and greatest web standards)

By the way, one of the easiest ways to detect a GenX writer or pontificator is their blatant use of terms like crush, hustle, vs., etc...many GenX I know use these terms very sincerely thus affording the rest of them a grace period about as long as their entire effective career.  It's our own fault - we fell for it - they left us a massive clue what they were up to and we missed it.  i think they call it gamification or something like that - apparently you love it.  It's basically ramification without one spelled with a G.

Oh sure we have some way frickin overpaid Boomers, there's prolly about 100 or so even. Sounds like we are being over run here, right?  Nope, the Boomers lost their savings when they invested in GenX back in 2000 - a fracking huge pile of it. Here in Vancouver I see more boomers any day on East Hastings than there are billionaire boomers in the entire world.

Oh, and don't forget this, GenX is out there busting and jailing your millenial tattletales apparently on behalf of the boomers who didn't even know they had secrets on the internet.  If only we could get our hands on the ACTUAL age data in that Ashley Madison breach, I bet we could make an interesting point.  That also reminds me that GenX did reserve one special spot for Boomers in their hearts and pants - this is the generation that brought you terms like MILF and GrannyFucking - now aren't they a special bunch.  I have yet to meet a millennial GrannyFucker and I am glad we got that out of our collective dialogue and that it never made it my hallowed Playboy pages.  It was probably close during a management shuffle in the 90s where some upstart was railing on good old Hugh in is bathrobe about taking on Larry Flynt.

There, I said it, you can kill me now, this tail end boomer just hung himself out to dry on the fucking internet, blah blah blah...do your best you tricking riot-inciting bunch of thieves and cheaters and liars. Kk, sorry honey, no not you...well, actually, hold on...we never got to guilt manipulation another of GenX's wonderful psychological gifts for the blind and suddenly overly mistrusting boomers.  This is now also referred to as emotional manipulation (of the most dirty sneaky kind you can imagine), covert aggression, and other clever terms - but I will always think of it as a wolf in sheep's clothing because I grew up on Aesop.  By the way millennial, good on you guys for always checking the tags when you pop them.  I love you guys. You are the hope I wanted to have.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

ThingSpot - #IoT

Testing embeds from Spunge for a new IoT curation project I am working on.

Tuesday, August 05, 2014

Innovation for independent musicians continues to up the game at ReverbNation

ReverbNation has made some big changes over the past year and while I tend to focus on the larger community I have built on Soundcloud, I am increasingly impressed by the tools and options that the folks at ReverbNation are delivering.  Promoting your music online is a constant effort and involves a lot of tools and services so the efficient and effective ones definitely stand out.

The new HTML5 player widget is now solid and if you want to remove ads etc you can with the pro version.  Here is the free version with my music.

The musician's dashboard is pretty impressive.  It gives you a quick view of your fan stats as well as your chart position locally, nationally and globally.  You also have quick access to your inbox, social integrations, and other tools. The default layout for the artist page, which you can modify extensively, provides a ton of useful options and with a bit of planning you can build one that works well on mobile devices.  Here I show my page with the Admin console closed on a desktop browser.

The team at ReverbNation has invested heavily based on user feedback in the new HTML5 player by first adding better controls and adding Share, Download, Favorite, and Playlist options. Go to the far right and head down the Rabbit Hole...I leave that for you to explore.

In that same vein, they have added more options to the widgets including one targeted for press clippings and reviews as well as one that automates the signup to your personal newsletter, FanReach.  The other options are shown here.

I truly hope this kind of innovation continues and I hope the community continues to grow and engage.  It makes it more accessible for listeners and much more powerful and credible for musicians to consider the investment of time and effort in another tool and community.

Monday, April 14, 2014

The field guide to data science

The folks at Booz Allan Hamilton have put a refreshing and well designed report on the opportunity for converting big data into big insights.

In The Field Guide to Data Science, a large and skilled cohort of Booz Allen contributors provide their insights in the following areas:

  • Start Here for the Basics provides an introduction to Data Science, including what makes Data Science unique from other analysis approaches. We will help you understand Data Science maturity within an organization and how to create a robust Data Science capability.
  • Take Off the Training Wheels is the practitioners guide to Data Science. We share our established processes, including our approach to decomposing complex Data Science problems, the Fractal Analytic Model. We conclude with the Guide to Analytic Selection to help you select the right analytic techniques to conquer your toughest challenges.
  • Life in the Trenches gives a first hand account of life as a Data Scientist. We share insights on a variety of Data Science topics through illustrative case studies. We provide tips and tricks from our own experiences on these real-life analytic challenges.
  • Putting it All Together highlights our successes creating Data Science solutions for our clients. It follows several projects from data to insights and see the impact Data Science can have on your organization.

You can download the full report here

Saturday, March 01, 2014

Why don't we actually listen to people instead of just aggregating streams?

The technology industry loves to take very meaningful words and terminology and reduce it's meaning and depth down to a shadow of it's former self for the purposes of first strike advantage or developing market share.

Having broken ground in social media, but now spreading across the digital landscape is another one of these bold misuses of the English language - the concept of Listening.  The first instances of Listening technology that I saw (a few years ago) were essentially streams of data from multiple sources, typically filtered by brands or account names.  When the volume of data was too much to read, these streams gave way to trending reports based on keyword analysis, geography, sentiment (we should probably talk about how this word has lost it's way also) and other aggregating factors that help us do amazing things, like derive averages.  Oh, we love our averages in marketing. I always say that if you want to do something average, base your strategy on the averages you get in your reporting.

Aggregating, reporting, analyzing, filtering, mining - any of these would have been a better term than listening. But Listening made it sound so active, so enticing, so concerned and empathetic to the needs of people.  Listening it was.  One small problem - it was very selective hearing.

To me this begs the question - why not actually listen?  Why don't we actively listen?  We have the capability.  Let's borrow from the psychology and personal improvement gurus and build out some inter personal skills based on real human capacity and concern.

How to Really Listen to Someone By Tina Su. “Everyone desires to be heard. When we listen to others, we validate their need to be acknowledged and understood. Deep down inside, we all want to know that we matter, that we are important.
Creativity and Listening by David Intrator. “There sure is a lot of talk about listening.But in our contemporary world there doesn’t seem to be much listening going on.Which is really no surprise, considering how noisy life’s become. Add to that the clamor that naturally goes on inside our heads as conscious human beings, and listening becomes a near impossibility.
How to listen in which Dave Gray shares his 10 commandments for listening. “If you want to be a better communicator learn to listen, and more importantly, listen to learn.

  1. "Validate their need to be acknowledged and understood."  From putting some basic acknowledgement in place to truly honouring and earning the digital opt-in, this particular facet of empathy is a great guideline for what we can with big data when we break it down into the conversations we want to have with people (marketers, people is another word for customers)
  2. "Listening becomes a near impossibility." So much noise. So much clamor. If we want to hear someone we are going to have to shut up for a minute. Stop broadcasting. Start having conversations. It will change your, I mean their, life.
  3. "Learn to listen, and more importantly, listen to learn." I do honestly care whether or not you had lunch today, but I don't need to see a picture of it. It's not about hearing every single thing that goes on, it's about the cues and clues to inform and propel the conversations we need to have. When we listen to learn, we can do something with the things we hear.
This might seem obvious, now that I've written it down, but trust me it's not. This particular area is prone to some of the buzzword-laden, inauthentic, myopic discussions I have ever had with product managers and marketers.  Trust me, I was listening.