Your customer’s the hero. And how do we tell a story that puts them at the center of the story?
Susan Hallam is the Founder and CEO of Hallam, an award-winning digital marketing agency she started in 1999 to help clients thrive in a digital world. She was awarded an MBE for services to entrepreneurship and innovation in the Queen’s Honors 2018. Hallam is also a Fellow of the Institute of Direct Marketing.
In this episode of Velocitize Talks, Hallam gives her insights on the increasing expectations of customer experience, the power of brand loyalty and unleashing creativity.
Let it grow (1:30)
We need to be changing but we still have to deliver the goods. We have to be transforming while we’re still delivering.
Of course, for many companies, growth doesn’t come easily. An estimated 35% of small business owners feel that their business is too small for a website.
Create to innovate (2:35)
While we want to collaborate to create, and we want to be creative, we also need the space to concentrate. It’s that balance between concentration, and then learning something new and creating every day.
Hallam has created campaigns for some of the most recognizable brands in the world, including Speedo, where they worked extensively on website design and branding, and the user experience (UX)—fueled, naturally, by creativity.
[Digital] marketing (4:45)
There’s no such thing as digital marketing anymore; it’s all just marketing but marketing in a digital world.
According to Hallam, “digital” is just a channel, a methodology. It’s only one element of the customer journey. However, that journey is falling behind. According to Forrester’s 2019 U.S. Customer Experience Index, the overall quality of the customer experience only rose by 0.4 points, to 70.2.
Site unseen (5:40)
Their website is an extension of their business values. It is their digital representation of who they are and their mission.
A recent report examined Google rankings and SEO, and the 200 factors that figure into their algorithm, including keywords, page loading, outbound links, video, social and mobile friendliness. So what does this mean for small businesses? You’ve got about 200 reasons to make your site a priority.
The customer’s always…sad? (9:09)
At the moment people are deeply disappointed with customer experience because of the rising tide of expectations.
Hallam states that successful brands like Apple have forever raised expectations in terms of the customer experience (CX), which appears to be lacking overall. Research from KPMG found that most companies fail to capture the full benefits of CX. It also concluded that customer journey mapping is a vital tool for engaging your audience the right way.
I’m with the brand (10:27)
The story you’re telling about your business isn’t really your story. It’s, how do I become part of your story?
Close to 90% of all buying decisions start with online research. At the end of the day, businesses are interested in how their customers (or potential customers) make their purchasing decisions. There are a number of triggers such as online user reviews (when was the last time you bought something on Amazon that had one star?); talking with family and friends; subconscious choices; and emotions.
Women in tech (11:56)
It would be great for the tech industry to be harnessing this 80% of women not working in technical careers.
According to information from the National Center for Women & Information Technology, the turnover rate for women in tech is more than twice as high as it is for men. Over half of women in the industry are leaving their jobs mid-career. And only five percent of leadership positions are currently held by women.
Some brighter news? The gender gap appears to be narrowing.