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News & Views

  1. Customer service doesn’t (always) matter

    By Andrew Dalglish -

    I recently visited a major carpet retailer and had perhaps the worst customer experience of my life.  I was in a rush…they were just going to finish their coffee.  I had found the perfect carpet…they strongly disagreed.  I needed the carpet fitted as soon as possible…they might be able to do something in 6 weeks.  “Vote with your feet” I thought.  And I did.  I walked down the street to a conveniently placed competitor whose customer service was the polar opposite.  “Outstanding” I thought.  Then I walked straight back up the street, swallowed my pride and struck a deal with my tormenter.  You see, they had the carpet I wanted.

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  2. Are you one of the 80 or the 20?

    By Andrew Dalglish -

    Rules of thumb generalise but can be useful.  Here’s two of particular relevance in the current business climate.  It costs 10 times more to acquire a new customer than retain an existing one.  80 per cent of sales originate from 20 per cent of customers.  My point?  Now more than ever the focus has to be on retaining customers, especially key accounts.

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  3. Extracts from the B2B Barometer

    By Andrew Dalglish -

    A marketer needs to keep their finger on the pulse.  On the pulse of their customers, on the pulse of their industry and on the pulse of their profession.  Without doing so they risk becoming stagnant or, worse still, irrelevant.  They miss opportunities, insights and ideas.In conjunction with the Institute of Direct Marketing (IDM) and the Association of B2B Agencies (ABBA), Circle Research has developed a regular survey to take the pulse of the B2B marketing profession.  This definitive study canvassed the opinion of more than 100 client side B2B marketing professionals who represent some of the UK’s largest industrial organisations.  Between them they control B2B marketing budgets in excess of £35 million.

    Here’s a few interesting observations.

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  4. Enhancing the net promoter score

    By Andrew Dalglish -

    In recent years advocates of the Net Promoter Score (NPS) concept have claimed clairvoyance.

    It’s easy then to see why NPS has been adopted by big hitters like GE and Microsoft.  Alongside its apparent predictive power, NPS is beautifully simple and provides a focal point for action across the organisation.First ask a representative group of your customers a simple question – on a scale of 1 to 10 how likely are you to recommend us to a colleague or peer.  Then subtract ‘detractors’ (those rating you 1 to 6) from ‘promoters’ (9 or 10) and out pops your NPS.  And here’s the most compelling part.  Evidence suggests that when compared to other marketing metrics this one number is the single most reliable indicator of a company’s ability to grow (although it’s worth noting that some recent studies have disputed this claim).

    In my view NPS is undoubtedly useful, but incomplete.

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  5. Knowledge is power

    By Andrew Dalglish -

    Here’s a positive voice amongst the gloom.  Recession is about change and with change comes opportunity.  Marketing is no exception to this.  The change?  As marketers seek more immediate ROI there has been a clear shift of focus from brand building to sales based activities such as lead generation.  The opportunity?  To adopt a new approach which makes you stand out more than ever.

    On this point I was recently discussing the role of research in lead generation with Lindsay Willott of The Marketing Practice.  The roles can be seen in full on Lindsay’s blog but here are three questions you might like to consider when planning your next campaign.

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