helping you master customer insight leadership

Pitfalls but publicity of public research

public researchHow reliable is public research? Can you trust those government or media covered surveys?

In the same week as we shared some examples of public segmentations, the BBC drove plenty of media coverage on the results of its latest “Happiness Test” research. Beautifully presented within its iWonder section, it captured the public imagination, especially in terms of evidence for traditional stereotypes in some areas of the country.

On the surface there was much to praise here. At a time when research is suffering being neglected by those interested in Big Data + Predictive Analytics, it is great to have such high-profile coverage for a large survey.

Sharing their data, and visualising it in a way that’s accessible for the general public, is the kind of data reciprocity and PR that public research really needs. It also captures the media & public interest, because it’s  fun; a “where should I live?” game. (more…)

The dangers of Public Segmentations

public segmentationsRecently it seems that segmenting your customers or citizens, and then sharing as public segmentations, is becoming fashionable.

In part, this is to be applauded and welcomed.

It highlights a key tool within the Customer Insight toolkit, encourages greater focus on understanding people and embraces the need for greater transparency. However, there is also an inherent risk, that readers fail to understand the purpose, design & limitations of such segmentations and thus unwittingly apply them where they will not help.

It reminds me of a time many years ago when psychometric segmentations were very popular in business circles.

Myers Briggs (MBTI) and many other profiles were enthusiastically applied and team members categorised into their ‘type‘. Sadly, all too often this perception into some important differences between team members was then filed away following the team build exercise and never used again. Screening interview candidates via psychometric segments was also ‘flavour of the month‘ at one stage, although I hear it being much more rarely used now (or only as part of a mix of ‘facts’ to be considered). (more…)

Is your true Marketing performance eclipsed?

marketing performanceHope you saw the solar eclipse in March 2015, or to clarify, enjoyed it without looking directly at the sun.

Quite an event to celebrate the first day of Spring (Vernal Equinox).

Whilst reflecting on this spectacle, I was reminded of the interim results coming through from our recent poll on how you measure your marketing performance.

Perhaps some of you feel that the benefit of your targeting efforts or insights are being obscured by inadequate measurement or big Marketing egos?

Here are some thoughts on what people have shared so far: (more…)

Event: FSF annual members’ conference

logo-tfsf-205x68On 24th March, the Financial Services Forum (FSF) held their annual members conference, with approx. 100 delegates across FS firms & agencies.

A number of marketing experts shared their experience, including Alan Gilmour, Liana Dinghile & Christophe Langlois. They covered relevant topics for FS firms today: Customer Centricity, Clear Communications & use of Social Media. Sadly, I missed most of their presentations due to other meetings, however Christophe shared some useful reminders to think of social as a new way of doing business rather than a separate channel (including example of an Indian bank offering “hashtag banking” enabling various transactions via Twitter).

Here is the agenda, as well as further information on those speakers (see below for my slides via SlideShare):


Is Pharma learning from FS too?

exchange-of-ideas-81822_640After previously sharing on FS firms & Retailers learning from each other, it’s interesting to see in CX Magazine how FS firms are sharing CX lessons at a conference for Pharma.

Perhaps sector cross-pollination of ideas is back in fashion as firms refocus their strategies for growth? Other sectors learning from FS is surely an encouragement to those of you who are customer leaders within FS firms, still working hard to de-toxify your brands and build a new perception.

Caroline McKinley from RBS has published an infographic summarising their approach to Customer Experience (CX), which you might find interesting: (more…)

Wales All Sector Coaching Conference

welsh-coaching-conference-2Although this was a coaching conference, aimed at coaches of all kinds, the content proved very insightful in understanding human thinking & behaviour, so should also be of interest to all leaders.

It was hosted at University of South Wales, by the very friendly Commercial Services team there. Sponsors included the Association of Coaching & the Institute of Leadership & Management (I’m a member of both organisations and recommend their resources). Our chair was the passionate hub of coaching in South Wales, Dave Tee an excellent academic and coach of coaches who has really advanced the focus on coaching in this region.

Themes for the day proved to be learning from Neuroscience, best practice in coaching (especially selecting a coach), Ethics in business and the controversial topic of aptly titled “Provocative Coaching“. There was much to learn from speakers in all these areas. (more…)

How to get back to Customer Centric as the point

iStock photoAfter so much media attention to the terms Big Data, Predictive Analytics and Data Scientist, I’m pleased to see that attention is returning to topics like being “Customer Centric“.

Without cultural change within most organisations, ever more sophisticated use of data & analytics will just make them more efficient at irritating the customer rather than actually improving those vital relationships.

Despite the fact that Big Data still dominates Google searches…

…there are encouraging signs of more focus on application for the benefit of the customer. Here are a few sources I’ve found recently. (more…)