Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Marketing inspirations abound

I've found that learning about and exploring marketing ideas is downright inspirational. Today, I've stumbled across so much inspirational stuff that I can't give all of it its fair shake here in this blog post, but I can at least stick them in a list so you can take from it what you will. Here goes:

  • The New York Times reported on a new trend taking shape in the marketplace called Social Shopping. According to the article, social shopping sites "tr[y] to combine two favorite online activities: shopping and social networking. These sites are hoping to ride the MySpace wave by gathering people in one place to swap shopping ideas. And like MySpace, the sites are designed for both browsing and blogging, with some shopping-related technology twists included." These retailers are trying to do something that librarians often try to do: allow people to discover resources when their needs are still somewhat vague and they're not quite sure what they want, but they know they can't find it through the usual suspects.
  • Real-life RSS Marketing from ClickZ isn't necessarily unique, but there are lots of idea-generating examples of RSS at work (I found the Apple widgets described to be particularly interesting).
  • How to Be a Compassionate Designer for Passionate Customers from MarketingProfs outlines 4 practical ways to nurture compassion for users: get out of the office, talk to someone, eat, sleep dream, curiosity, and do what they do. Also, you all know I'm a fan of MarketingProfs' content. Recently, there was a technology-related mix-up that resulted in subscribers like me being deluged with e-mail messages we weren't supposed to get. I really didn't think too much of it, but MarketingProfs lost some subscribers as a result and profusely apologized for the mistake. It's a terrific example of service recovery when things go bad (they even responded personally to each person who complained and thanked them for complaining - wow!).
  • Blog About Libraries author Steve Backs initiated Naked Reference Month at his library. This September, desk staff are forbidden to bring non-desk work to the reference desk but instead they are to be 100% focused on providing reference and related desk duties. Though I am extremely conscious to never appear to be too busy to help someone if I'm working on other tasks on the desk (which there's rarely time to do anyway), I know I would probably learn a lot more about needs, be more approachable, and discover more service opportunities if I ditch the non-desk stuff entirely, so I'm joining in.
  • Trendwatching.com has two recent and highly-recommended reads: Customer-Made Update and Status Skills. The former is an update to the first Customer-Made report that came out in May 2005, which was an excellent description of how customers are taking on marketing roles. The latter merits its own post, which I hope to work on tomorrow.
Whew! That's a lot of inspiration, at least for one day. Hope these examples get your gears turning like they did mine. If you have inspirations of your own to shre, please feel free to do so!

Categories: must_reads | resource_roundup

1 comment:

Ann Handley said...

Hey Jill,

Thanks for referencing MarketingProfs -- not once, but twice today! Much appreciated! Didn't realize you were a victim...umm....recipient of all that mail, too. Again, apologies.