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Intuition Tool: Sponsored Link Google Search

I think we would all agree that it's important to keep an eye on our customers and competitors. Here's another tool to help you do just that. This search returns only sponsored links.

If you want to see who else has bought the keywords you are buying here is your tool.

December 31, 2004 in audio publication, Blog Outsourcing, build credibility, Business Marketing, CMO | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Collecting AIM Screen Names

Do you use IM? Do your customers? Just as the collection of email addresses is difficult as people are spam averse the collection of Instant Message (AIM) usernames is also difficult. The good news is that it can be incentivesed. Simply offer a value exchange.

Set up a special AIM account with a special away message that could include something like a special code for a discount on their current invoice. Change these codes frequently. Log this account so that you can go back and capture the screen names and add them to your buddy lists so you can know next time your customers are online.

Once you are set up simply use your other communication tools to promote your special discount. Add it to your e-newsletter, voicemail greeting, e-mail signature file, etc.

Once you have the screen names find useful value added ways to use them. Don't just feed the same content through the new channel. This is especially true for IM since it's a very personal communication channel. You want to use it to follow up on orders that have shipped or very simple questions/verifications regarding open orders.

"Sue, did you get the order we shipped on Tuesday?" or "Tom, I see you only ordered three widgets this month. Last month you ordered five. Is this correct?

December 30, 2004 in award winning newsletter, Blog Outsourcing, blog publish, build credibility, Building Customer Community, Business Marketing, Business newsletter, CMO | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Intuition Tool: Out of Office Messages

In these days between holidays it may be hard to communicate with coworkers and customers as many are taking vacation or work for companies that shut down during this week. Ever feel like no one is returning your calls or emails?

You can intuit a lot about a person by observing how they use their communication tools. If it's a scheduled vacation but you receive no out of office responder messages by voicemail, email, IM or even a blog post that indicates time away you can figure the person is uncomfortable with these communication tools. If you get one type of Out of Office message but not another it may be a clue as to which communication channel they value most. i.e. Email vs. Voicemail. If you consistently experience timely voicemail message updates, email auto-responders, IM away messages, and even blog schedule notices you can bet that you are dealing with a tech savvy customer who is ready to subscribe to your email newsletter or the RSS feed for your corporate blog.

December 30, 2004 in award winning newsletter, Blog Outsourcing, Blogging Tools, build credibility, Building B2B Relationships, bulk email marketing, Business publications | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Opt-in Email: Are You Opting In?

Many companies are doing email newsletters and blogs to communicate with customers and prospects. Are you routinely signing up for the opt-in enewsletters of your customers, prospects and competitors? These strategic marketing communications are chuck full of customer intuition just laying there ready to be analyzed.

A customer announces new building in their newsletter. They might be ripe for your HR services as their staff grows in the new facility.

The first place a company is likely to announce a new product or service is to their customers via their email marketing or their corporate blog. If you are their competition wouldn't you like a head's up? Shouldn't you be reading along?

Your customer's customers are complaining on the corporate blog about problems with their products or services. You can spot an opportunity for you to help your customer solve their problems.

Monitoring the internet marketing efforts of your customers, prospects and competitors can be a leading indicator that helps you determine the direction and opportunities for your own business.

December 22, 2004 in award winning magazine, award winning newsletter, Blog Outsourcing, blog publish, Blogging Tools, build credibility, Building B2B Relationships, Building Customer Intuition, bulk email marketing, Business Marketing, Business newsletter, Business publications, Business relationships | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Intuition Tools: Top Five

Here are the Top Five Customer Intuition Tools we've posted this year.

Weather, Weather Everywhere
Using weather information sites to inform customer touchpoints.

Staying Alert to Your Customers
Using Google Alerts to stay informed on relevant information about customers.

Tracking Down Your Ex Customers
A service for cell phone companies to help them find and market to their ex customers.

Knowing When Customers are Online
A tool to track customer's online status in AOL Instant Messenger.

Six Questions to Ask Customers
A strategy for developing customer intuition by asking good questions.

December 21, 2004 in Blog Outsourcing, build credibility, Business Marketing, Business newsletter, CMO, Web/Tech | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Enewsletter Sample Article

If you haven't signed up for the BeTuitive Newsletter I want to share an article you missed.

BeTuitive is all about actionable results through dynamite enewsletters and blogs. Toward that end we have some excellent writers who really know their stuff. If you want to have an excellent newsletter that engages readers you've got to have good headlines.

If the Headline Sucks, You’re History

If you are like most ambitious writers – or you are the person who relies on their work – chances are you sweat, furrow your brow and stay up way-too-late fretting over the perfect copy.

Many a caffeine-driven writer worries; they wonder how to best button-hole important sources, ask probing questions, capture local color and structure an article into pithy, compelling prose.

Yet, there’s something that is far too often overlooked in the quest for Pulitzer Prize perfection: If the headline fails to capture readers’ interest, the story will go unread.

The same is true of digital marketing copy. If your “headline” is not persuasive, your message will fail to help you forge closer relationships and attract the interest of potential clients. A “headline” can be that line of words above an article, or the introductory words that label a Web page. A “headline” can also be the subject line in an email message.

A headline acts as the bridge over the gap between the creation of a good story and the reading of it. It must offer the essence of a story, boiled down to fit into a limited space. The headline’s job has always been critical in print publications. It is arguably more critical in the message-crowded world of electronic customer communications.

So, how do we make each headline into something that demands, screams or sweetly whispers “Read me” ?

Try three strategies:...continue reading

Sign-up for the BeTuitive Newsletter

December 20, 2004 in award winning blog, Blogging Tools, Building Customer Community, Building Customer Intuition, bulk email marketing, business credibility, Business newsletter, Business publications, Business relationships | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Intuition Tool: Good Telephone Voice

Do you work on your telephone voice? Does your first telephone call of the day get your best gravel voice? One of my coworkers was explaining his morning telephone voice routine. Each morning before his first call he makes a point to clear his throat and practice his answer line to work out the gravel.

Being in good phone voice is a good for customer intuition. Combining good voice with Caller ID and even CRM tools allows you to infuse your voice with appropriate emotion when taking calls. It may be your best customer calling, next year's best customer or even a problem customer. Your tone of voice will communicate to your caller that you are glad to hear from them. A warm excited greeting will put them at ease and perhaps they will be more candid about the content of their call if they know you are glad to hear from them. People will be quicker to return your calls if they intuitively know by reading your tone of voice that you are glad to hear from them.

Take care of your voice and use technology to help you communicate with authenticity and energy. Customers will respond and connect with you.

December 17, 2004 in award winning newsletter, Blog Outsourcing, build credibility, Business newsletter, Web/Tech | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Email Newsletter Writing Tools

One of the best things the blogsphere can do these days is to equip readers with useful tools and tips that can save valuable time and effort. Mark Frauenfelder over at Boing Boing has been recommending some great tools and services of value to anyone needing to record interviews or dictation and then transcribe the audio to text.

First Mark recommended Audio Recorder which is an OS X application for recording MP3 files directly to a computer hard drive. (note: there are many PC apps that can do this as well)

Mark uses Audio Recorder with a telephone connector to record telephone interviews. The built in microphone on a laptop might be all that's needed to record a meeting or presentation.

Next Mark recommends a transcription playback software:

I've been using iTunes to play back the files, but last night Boing Boing reader Mason told me about a $20 transcribing program called Listen&Type. I gave it a whirl, and I'm sold on it. Here's why: (1) You don't have to switch back and forth between iTunes and a text editor to stop and start the recording. Listen&Type lets you set up keyboard commands so you can stop and start the audio without leaving your text editor. (2) You can skip back 5 seconds by entering a keyboard command. There are some other functions, too, such as marking, but features 1 and 2 have made me an instant fan.

He then points to information about transcription services that will take your uploaded mp3 files and transcribe them to text files using human typists. While these services aren't perfect they are a useful resource for writers needing to transcribe megs of MP3s.

Tools like these can help you develop content first class content for your email newsletters, blogs, reports, studies etc. Load up and go get those customer interviews for your next issue.

December 15, 2004 in award winning design, Building B2B Relationships, Building Customer Community, Building Customer Intuition, bulk email marketing, Business Marketing, Business newsletter, Business publications, Business relationships, Web/Tech | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Content Items For Newsletters

We have been trying an experiment here at BeConnected. We have been posting a daily "On this day in history" factoid daily. We did this as an example of a technique you might employ with your email marketing newsletters. By building a spot for relevant history factoids into your email newsletter template you are giving away a bite sized chunk of content that could positively impact your open rates. As I have posted about before, readers may be motivated to open and scan your e-newsletter simply for the extras you provide. Cartoons, polls, factoids, photo contests, etc. are all simple ways to connect with your readership that just may get and keep attention for your opt-in email marketing.

By the way we're giving all the staff writers and crack researchers of the "on this day in history" department the rest of the year off for the holidays.

December 15, 2004 in blog publish, Building B2B Relationships, Building Customer Community, Building Customer Intuition, bulk email marketing, business credibility, Business Marketing, Business newsletter, Business publications, Business relationships, CMO, Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

On December 14, 1902

The first telegraph cable was laid across the Pacific Ocean. Fast intercontinental communications is only about a century old. Who knows where things will be in another 100 years.

December 14, 2004 in Building Customer Community | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack