Thursday Sep 27, 2012

What You Can Learn from the NFL Referee Lockout

American football is a lot like religion. The fans are devoted followers that take brand loyalty to a whole new level. These fans that worship their teams each week showed that they are powerful customers whose voice has an impact. Yesterday, these fans proved that their opinion could force the hand of a large and powerful institution.

With a three-month NFL referee lockout that seemed like it was nowhere close to resolution, the Green Bay Packers and the Seattle Seahawks competed last Monday night. For those of you that might have been out of the news cycle the past few days, Green Bay lost the game due to a controversial call that many experts and analysts agree should have resulted in Green Bay winning the game. Outrage ensued.

The NFL had pulled replacement referees from the high school ranks, and these replacements did not have the knowledge and experience to handle high intensity NFL games. Fans protested about their customer experience. Their anger-filled rants were heard in social media, in the headlines of newspapers, on radio, and on national TV. Suddenly, the NFL was moved to reach an agreement with the referees. That agreement was reached late in the night on Wednesday with many believing that the referees had the upper hand forcing the owners into submission. Some might argue that the referees benefited, not the fans. Since the fans wanted qualified and competent referees, I would say the fans did benefit. The referees are scheduled to return to the field this Sunday, so the fans got what they wanted.

What can you learn from this negative customer experience?

  • Customers are in control. NFL owners thought they were controlling this situation with the upper hand over referees. The owners figured out they weren’t in control when their fans reacted negatively. Customers can make or break you more now than ever before, which is why it is more important to connect with them, engage them in a personal manner, and create rewarding relationships.
  • Protect your brand. Whether knowingly or unknowingly, the NFL put their brand and each team’s brand at risk with replacement referees. Think about each business decision you make, and how it may impact your brand at different points in time. A decision that results in a gain today could result in a larger loss down the road.
  • Customer experience matters. The NFL likely foresaw declining revenues in ticket sales, merchandising, advertising, and other areas if the lockout continued. While fans primarily spoke with their minds in the days following the Green Bay debacle, their wallets would be the next things to speak. Customer experience directly affects your success and is one of the few areas where you can differentiate your business.

What would you do if your brand got such negative attention? Would you be prepared to navigate such stormy waters? Would you be able to prevent such a fiasco? If you don’t have a good answer to these questions, consider joining us October 3-5, 2012 at the Oracle Customer Experience Summit in San Francisco.

You’ll have the opportunity to learn even more about customer experience from industry experts such as best-selling author Seth Godin, Paul Hagen and Kerry Bodine from Forrester Research, Inc., George Kembel from the Stanford d.School, Bruce Temkin of The Temkin Group, and Gene Alvarez from Gartner Inc.. There will also be plenty of your peers and customer experience experts available for networking and discussions.

RightNow CX @ OpenWorld: What to Experience

RightNowWe want to welcome our RightNow CX customers to Oracle OpenWorld next week. Get ready for a great week and a whole new experience!

For a high level overview of what is going on during the week, please review these previous posts: Is There a Cloud Over OpenWorld? and What to "CRM" in San Francisco? CRM Highlights for OpenWorld '12. Also, don't forget you can add on the Customer Experience Summit @ OpenWorld to make your week even more complete and get involved with the Experience Revolution!

Below is a highlight of only some of the RightNow related sessions at OpenWorld. Please use OpenWorld Schedule Builder or check the OpenWorld Content Catalog for all of the session details and any time or location changes. Tip: Pre-enrolled session registrants via Schedule Builder are allowed into the session rooms before anyone else, so Schedule Builder will guarantee you a seat. Many of the sessions below will likely be at capacity.

No better way to start off than hearing where Oracle RightNow is going!

Oracle RightNow CX Cloud Service Vision and Roadmap (CON9764) - Oct 1, 10:45 AM. Oracle RightNow CX Cloud Service combines Web, social, and contact center experiences for a unified, cross-channel service solution in the cloud, enabling organizations to increase sales and adoption, build trust, strengthen relationships, and reduce costs and effort. Come to this session to hear from David Vap and his team of Oracle experts about where the product is going and how Oracle is committed to accelerating the pace of innovation and value to its customers.

Oracle OpenWorldInterested in the Cloud and want to know why some leading CIOs are moving to the cloud? You can hear first hand from CIOs from Emerson, Intuit and Overstock.com: CIOs and Governance in the Cloud (CON9767) - Oct 3, 11:45 AM.  

And of course there are a number of sessions that drill down into more specific areas. Here are just a few:

  • Deliver Outstanding Customer Experiences: Oracle RightNow Dynamic Agent Desktop Cloud Service (CON9771) - Oct 1, 4:45 PM. This session covers how companies have delivered exceptional customer experiences and how the Oracle RightNow Dynamic Agent Desktop Cloud Service roadmap will evolve in the future. The Oracle RightNow Contact Center Experience suite includes incident management, knowledge, guided processes, and other service capabilities to unify the customer experience across channels. Come learn about the powerful tools that enable even your junior agents to consistently provide outstanding service across all customer interaction channels.
  • Self-Service in the Age of Data Intimacy (CON11516) - Oct 1, 3:15. Even though businesses are generating more and more data around their relationships and interactions with customers, very little of the information a business generates ends up available to the contact center and even less is made available to the online service experience. The generic one-size-fits-all approach that typifies most online service experiences ultimately fails to address all user needs, and that failure ultimately leads to the continued use of high-cost agent-assisted channels for low-value interactions. This session introduces Oracle RightNow Web Experience’s Virtual Assistant and discusses how you can deliver rich, engaging, highly personalized experiences with the quality of agent-assisted service at a much lower cost.
  • Improve Chat Experiences: Best Practices for Chat Pilots and Deployments (CON11517) - Oct 1, 4:45 PM. Today’s organizations are challenged to grow revenue and retain customers with fewer resources, and many have turned to chat as an approach to improving the customer experience, increasing sales conversions, and reducing costs at the same time. From setting goals and metrics and training staff to customizing and tuning the solution, this session provides best practices and lessons learned from a broad set of implementations to help you get the most out of your chat solution.
  • Differentiated Experience with Web Service (CON9770) - Oct 2, 1:15 PM. A reputation for excellent customer service can differentiate your brand and drive revenue. In this session, learn how to develop that reputation by transforming your online self-service into a highly interactive, branded customer experience. See live examples of how Oracle RightNow Web Experience has helped customers deliver on their Web service strategies.
  • Unifying the Agent’s Engagement Console (CON11518) - Oct 2, 1:15 PM. Does your customer experience suffer because your agents are toggling between multiple tools? Do your agent productivity and morale suffer as well? Come to this session to learn how Oracle RightNow CX Cloud Service seamlessly unifies these disparate systems into a single engagement console. Regardless of channel, powerful adaptive tools consistently guide agents across contextually aware personalized workflows. Great agent experiences drive great customer experiences.
  • Oracle RightNow CX Cloud Service and the Oracle Customer Experience Portfolio (CON9775) - Oct 3, 10:15 AM. This session covers how Oracle’s integrated suite of customer experience (CX) products fits with the Oracle CX portfolio of products (Oracle Fusion Customer Relationship Management; the Oracle ATG, Oracle Endeca, and Oracle Knowledge product families; and Oracle Business Intelligence) to increase revenues, strengthen customer relationships, and reduce costs across the entire end-to-end customer lifecycle for companies that sell to consumers and those that sell to businesses.
  • Greater Insights from Customer Engagements (CON9773) Oct 4, 12:45 PM. In this session, hear how to leverage service interaction insights, customer feedback, and segmented service engagements to improve the customer experience. Discover how customers, such as J&P Cycles, learn and take action based on business insights gained through their customer engagements.

Again, these are just some of the sessions, so check out the Content Catalog for details on Knowledge Management, Customization, Integration and more in the Oracle Develop stream for Customer Experience. Be sure to visit the Oracle DEMOgrounds in the Moscone West Exhibit Hall.

If this is your first OpenWorld, welcome! If you are returning, hi again and enjoy!

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