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Posts by Howard Kaplan

FutureNow Post
Monday, Feb. 13, 2012 at 8:56 pm

Which Type Am I? Thoughts on Personas & Personality Type

February 13th, 2012

Isn’t it interesting to site back and watch the old become new again?

While speaking with marketers after my session on Personas at Conversion Conference, it seemed to me a trend was (re)gaining traction.  Over the past few months, the digital community at large has taken up the Personas mantle, and there have been many great articles written to help Marketers.  As we wrote in Waiting for Your Cat To Bark, understanding your customers and enabling them to get what they came for is of utmost…

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FutureNow Post
Wednesday, Jan. 28, 2009 at 5:09 am

On CMOs, Customer Service, and Birthing Elephants

January 28th, 2009

If you’ve been to one of our trainings over the past few years, or seen any of us present at a conference, you’ve probably heard the line about the average tenure of a Chief Marketing Officer being less than the gestation period of an elephant.  Well, it’s time for some new material.  New research from executive search firm Spencer Stuart shows that CMOs are making it into their 3rd year with the same organization, on average, based on a…

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FutureNow Post
Thursday, Jan. 22, 2009 at 10:35 am

When the little things matter most

January 22nd, 2009

Transparency. Speed. “We” are smarter than “Me”. Interconnectivity.

These are just a few of the staples of the digital world in which we now live, and each present opportunities for success, or potholes that must be navigated around as business owners & brands interact with their audience, prospects and customers.

Consider three brand interactions I had yesterday, and observe the different ways I shared my experience with others (prior to this very public broadcast of all three!)

The good, the bad and the…

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FutureNow Post
Monday, Jan. 5, 2009 at 10:16 am

Calling All Sports Fans – ESPN.com gets redesign

January 5th, 2009
ESPN.com - 2009 first major redesign

ESPN.com - 2009 first major redesign

In the first major redesign of the new year, ESPN.com unveils it’s latest redesign today, after two weeks in “private” Beta for it’s Insider subscribers.  Despite the two week focus group, today’s redesign doesn’t appear noticeably different from the version that launched privately 12/15.  Their stated goals were:

1) less clutter, ostensibly to drive higher engagement (more time spent on site, more pageviews, more traffic) 2) more ad space, to drive higher revenue

Do you…

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FutureNow Post
Friday, Nov. 28, 2008 at 2:16 am

Black Friday or Bleak Friday?

November 28th, 2008
Amazon's Black Friday deals

Well sports fans, here we go.  Black Friday.  Soon, Cyber Monday.  (Forgive me for the brief digression, but did you know neither Black Friday nor Cyber Monday typically deliver results, in the form of conversions, er, sales, mainly just delivering traffic :(   Unsurprisingly, retail numbers thus far have been bleak, to say the least.

Retailers are hopeful however, and doing everything they can to jumpstart the economy and try to turn a profit this holiday season.  …

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FutureNow Post
Thursday, Oct. 30, 2008 at 1:03 am

When Consumer Confidence is Low…

October 30th, 2008

Guess what becomes more important? Yup, conversion.

As online marketers are forced to reign in their spending (along with just about everyone else today), many may be tempted to cut their optimization budgets. After all, optimizing a website is w_o_r_k. It’s far easier to simply buy more traffic, when you need to generate greater profits.

That strategy even works too, on a short enough time horizon, although admittedly more so in bull markets than bear ones. But in recessionary times (or those…

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FutureNow Post
Tuesday, Oct. 21, 2008 at 2:25 pm

Has Social Media killed blogging?

October 21st, 2008

Argh.

Wired’s (and Valleywag) Paul Boutin writes a eulogy for Blogs. Link-bait? Probably, but he certainly raised the ire of several in the online community, myself included. Heck, he even got me to crawl out from the rock I was hiding these past few months and pen a few words of commentary, in defense of blogging (yes, I recognize the irony ;) . I think Mathew Ingram wrote the best counter to Paul’s argument, so I’ll let you hop off and read his discourse…

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FutureNow Post
Tuesday, Jul. 8, 2008 at 3:08 pm

Case Study: Comcast uses Twitter to delight

July 8th, 2008

Sitting down to the watch the Sox game last night, I surfed over to my hometown paper and found an absolute gem of customer-centricity in the most unlikely of places – a cable television company. As someone who’s lived in a few different markets over the years, I’ve experienced Time-Warner, Comcast, Primestar, Cablevision, and Verizon, and I can tell you there is one common bond that stands out amongst all of Big Cable – the privilege each of the CSRs allowed me…

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FutureNow Post
Wednesday, May. 21, 2008 at 11:39 am

3 Great (and Quick) Optimization Reads from Omniture

May 21st, 2008

omniture logoYesterday’s visit to the Omniture Industry Insights blog gave me a one-stop-shop for fodder on marketing optimization tactics and strategy worth sharing (and a personal opportunity to apologize to boot!).

First up, John Broady writes about 5 fundamentals for improving the ROI from landing pages. This has long been a popular topic, yet, sadly, it’s still front-and-center in a lot of practitioner’s minds. The fact that so much has been written on the topic only makes John’s piece that much more impressive. His…

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FutureNow Post
Tuesday, Feb. 5, 2008 at 11:10 am

Finding Signal in the “Microhoo” Echo Chamber

February 5th, 2008

MicrohooI guess last Friday was a slow news day; GrokDotCom and 155 of our closest blogging and media friends “broke” the big news. Yawn. (I’m guessing Google execs wished they’d released earnings then, rather than the day before ;) )

Look on the bright side: For followers of the online space, if you didn’t like the coverage you read, you certainly had other rehashes and “me-toos” to keep you occupied. In fact, the hardest thing about actually reading all this coverage would…

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