Over 500 people participated in the CheetahMail Annual Summit last week in New York City. RichRelevance was pleased to be a sponsor and exhibitor at the event which was themed around “The Art & Science of Customer Engagement.” From best practices to new innovations, the entire event was focused on customer relationship and success and the sessions were highly informative and entertaining. The MoMA (a CheetahMail customer) even allowed use of its highly exclusive sculpture garden for the opening night reception. As a sponsor, we welcomed the opportunity to meet with colleagues and customers at a fantastic partner event. Thank you to all who came by our booth to watch the demo of our new solution RichMail–publically launched on the first day of the conference. We couldn’t have asked for a better way to celebrate than with the partner who directly enabled the launch case study with one of our valued customers, which you can read here.
As an entrepreneur, I interact with many different branches of business at our various partners, customers and vendors: from sales and marketing, to engineering, to IT and corporate development. While I’ve spent the least amount of time interacting with Corp Dev, I’ve nonetheless maintained a highly ambivalent view of them—until very recently.
The Hot Dog Vendor
The other day I’m at the ballpark watching the Mariners get their butt kicked, and I hear that old call, “Hot dogs! Get’cher hot dogs!” I send money down the line and catch the hot dog the vendor chucks my way. ”Hmm. I want a soda too,” I thought, but no drink vendors are around. ”I should have asked for mustard.” I wait 20 minutes for another vendor to come by with drinks. Out of diet. Too much ice. Now my hot dog is cold and still no closer to being covered in mustard. Dang.
So the question is: Is the concessions company aligned correctly with the stadium on the right business objectives, or are they just trying to hit their sales goal and save money by not asking if a customer needs condiments? The answer to that question is what differentiates a vendor from partner.
What’s in a Name?
A quick Google for definitions turned up the following:
vendor: “n: a supplier of goods or services”
partner: “n: a cooperative relationship between people or groups who agree to share responsibility for achieving some specific goal”
Wow, 300% more words are needed to define “partner.” And check out the power of those words: cooperative, share, responsibility, achieving. Those concepts are at the absolute core of our company. But as they say, actions speak louder than words; let’s talk about some of the ways we’ve demonstrated to our customers that we’re a partner, not just a vendor.
- Have code, will travel. We don’t pay lip service to helping our clients succeed. Our performance-based business model incentivizes us to really get behind our customers and help them succeed – including on-site brainstorming, custom strategy innovation, and guidance on personalization best practices. The RichResults team is here to help customers achieve their goals. Why? It’s the spirit of partnership.
- Lightweights need not apply. A top-tier customer asked us if we can process their terabytes of offline loyalty program data to further personalize recommendations online. Our answer? “Yep!” (It took their previous personalization vendor over 12 hours to complete a simple catalog build of just 1GB. Yipes!) The enRICH™ Personalization Engine, conversely, is enterprise-grade, leveraging Hadoop (also used by Google, Yahoo, Amazon, Hulu) to process large data sets with ease. While our 7 data centers are a serious investment for us, they are the right business decision for both us and our customers. We’ve got skin in the game, and customers share the benefit of our award-winning technology achievements.
- Education leads to happier customers. The RichResults team comprises some of the smartest brains from the online world – Amazon, Redfin, Overstock, PayPal, Salesforce. We spend a crazy amount of time analyzing performance of our 40+ algorithms, figuring out what’s working best for each customer, making sure that what we deliver aligns with each customer’s objectives. We’re transparent with our results and our technology – “black box” technology is great for plane crashes, but terrible for business objectives.
Connecting the dots: The RichResults team holds a deep commitment to strong partnerships with our customers. On-site visits, brainstorming, brown-bag lunches with our Chief Scientist, investment in enterprise-level technologies, building a brilliant client services team – it’s in our DNA to focus on our customers. We want to see you succeed – period.
Come have a hot dog with us at the ballpark the next time you’re in town. We’ll bring the mustard (both fancy and yellow).
The naming of Amazon.com as the top-performing brand in the US by market research firm Millward Brown is truly a watershed moment for e-commerce players who have neither the long standing history nor seeming reach of many traditional multi-channel retailers. This ranking applauds those who have toiled night and day to build a rich, rewarding and relevant experience for online shoppers and demonstrates how much power this relatively new channel has in not just supporting but creating brands. What’s particularly interesting is that among the top ten performing brands in this study, six are products (e.g. Tide, Tylenol, Huggies), three are services (FedEx, WebMD, UPS) and only one is a retailer: Amazon. This is crazy—how is it that an e-commerce pure play trumps national retail chains that boast web sites, sales people and physical footprints?
Welcome to a new era of retail where the shopper is in charge. With competitors literally a click away, total transparency in the purchase experience and the ability to instantly price check from a mobile, today’s consumer is fully in command of the shopping experience. With this in mind, RichRelevance has launched a new campaign: Respect the Shopper. Continue Reading