So much content, so little time...
A weekly round-up of the posts and themes I found particularly interesting or useful.
People are not just bits of data was a recurring theme this week, together with more discussion on the changing nature of branding, and some interesting case studies on how brands are adapting.
People are people...
With the massive increase in the quantity and variety of data on customers, several posts reminded us not to confuse data with people.
Drawing The Line Between Clever And Creepy With Customer Data highlighted the need for companies to build trust with customers, by being transparent about their use of customer information, and demonstrating how the customer will benefit.
Big Data Doesn't Work if You Ignore the Small Things that Matter pointed out that there's little point investing heavily in big data, if you don't do the simple things to make your individual customers happy.
Do You Trust Your Customer Survey Results? provided good advice on how to ensure data accurately reflects the quality of your customer relationships.
While In Search Of Customer Insight reminded us that it's the insights, rather than the data itself, that really matter, and outlined a simple 5-step approach to find them.
In a world that's seeing dramatic change, the elements of a new approach to branding are starting to emerge.
The Story Behind The Stuff: Consumers' Growing Interest In "Real" Products argued that brands need to engage people with things to think about and to do, in order to become more interesting, and more "real" in their eyes.
"If you don't like change, you're going to like irrelevance even less" highlighted how many major brands have concluded that "doing good" as a long-term business strategy is the only way to ensure positive growth.
Useful and believable promises pointed out that marketing only works if you promise something that's useful enough to people, and they believe it's a promise you're going to keep.
While Simplicity. The Most Powerful Branding Principle argued that in a world of ever-increasing complexity, every brand needs to create a simple experience for their customer.
Lessons from the front line...
Some interesting case studies this week, that showed how different brands are adapting.
P&G, J&J Prove Agility Is Today's Must-Have Skill to Keep the Edge in Branding gave some interesting examples of how these companies can respond quickly, if something relevant to the brand occurs.
Anatomy Of A Redesign: How eBay Pieced Together A New E-Commerce Machine explored how eBay is tackling some of the most difficult problems of the retail industry, to give customers a better experience.
While McDonald's Local Strategy, from El McPollo to Le McWrap Chevre highlighted five ways McDonald's has learnt to blend global scale with local specialities.
Talking about adapting, let me know how this weekly round-up could be made more useful...