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Theresa Quintanilla
Houston, TX
Founder at SteadyCRM.com
Interests: CRM, customer relationship management, marketing, loyalty, innovation, business books, houston's image, blogging, new york, marketing trends
Recent Activity
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If you have email-based conversations with your customers, you are already building loyalty with email (if you're being nice, I guess). The real question is can we build loyalty with mass emails? Personalization helps, but we have to do more than just toss in a name. We have to merge individual recognition, which is impossible if you haven't been using a CRM to track activities and add history to your contact records. A big, powerful company like Marriott can serve up reams of personalized data. A smaller company can at least log birthdays, major milestones, and preferences that will help... Continue reading
Reblogged 4 days ago at QViews
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Fast-growing startups can spin out all types of innovations. Some work, some don't. For most of us, it's a matter of following along and copying what works. Fortune: Starbucks and Lyft partner to give rewards to drivers and riders, 2015-Jul-22 by Kia Kokalitcheva Retaining drivers is a critical front in the riding hailing wars. Both Lyft and Uber have used aggressive tactics to poach each other’s drivers through big cash rewards. Simple things like letting passengers tip their drivers through the app with Starbucks “stars,” or points, can help drivers feel more appreciated by Lyft. With that said, Uber has... Continue reading
Reblogged Jul 23, 2015 at QViews
One of the best ways to build customer loyalty is to recover excellently from our mistakes. Groove provides customer service software, and they've compiled a wonderful list of words that customers want to hear. I think these are phrases customers always want to hear, but they are most important when things are not going as the customer hoped. Groove: Word Choice Matters, 2014-Oct-21 by Len Markidan I don't know, but I'll find out for you. I'd be frustrated, too. I'd be happy to help you with this. I'll send you an update by [day or time]. I really appreciate you... Continue reading
Reblogged Jul 22, 2015 at QViews
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One of my most memorably bad experiences was in the service area of a car dealership. I was clearly not of the recognized regular customers. And I arrived in a bad mood, as a consequence of some problem with my car. The service manager punished me by overlooking me for all the other customers in the area. There was no queueing system that might have protected my turn. As I stood there and stewed, I had plenty of time to consider what I had done to contribute to the situation and how I wish things had been handled differently. If... Continue reading
Reblogged Jul 21, 2015 at QViews
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Sorry to pick on Office Depot, but their loyalty program isn't reaching me. Office Depot has been my favorite office supply store for ten years. I can't even really tell you why, except I like going there. The people have always been nice. Some years I've been ramping up a small business and have spent heavily. Other years I'm in a job and just get a few things for home use. Right now I'm starting a business but trying to run very lean. However, their loyalty program doesn't vary. Points and discounts: they are missing an opportunity to get me... Continue reading
Reblogged Jul 15, 2015 at QViews
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Over at ChaiOne, they've designed a new "mobile sales enablement tool" called Game Plan that looks pretty cool. Fortunately for everyone, they've put out an infographic that sharing the research that led to the Game Plan project. The text is a little hard to read here, so head over ChaiOne to see their original. The most interesting perspective for me was how little patience sales people have for finding the right content that's already been prepared by marketing. I knew they hate data entry, but they also hate looking for content. So Game Plan might be right for your team.... Continue reading
Posted Jul 10, 2015 at QViews
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Evan Malter has been a small business owner serving small business owners. Now he is innovating ways to help them finance their growth. His new venture, ZipCap, provides 12-month term loans to small businesses which can get 100 or more customers to pledge to spend a minimum amount during the year. The amount of the loan is based on the total amount pledged, and it's early days to know whether this concept will work. Based on my experience with small business owners, I do think this idea has good prospects. New owners often get freaked out about short-term profitability, which... Continue reading
Posted Jul 7, 2015 at QViews
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We all have our issues with social media. As soon as we get comfortable it changes. Unfortunately, that's an advantage! The tools are getting better in many respects. It's not a smooth road but it does lead to greater awareness. Anyone interested in growing a business, building a career, and developing strong relationships has no choice but to start paying attention and participating. Not constantly, but with a sense of obligation. Our friends and associates are out their sharing their experience and views and we have to acknowledge them. We can actually insult them if we don't. It's just the... Continue reading
Reblogged Jul 2, 2015 at QViews
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If you have a restaurant and customers use Facebook to announce their presence, do those customers expect the restaurant to notice? What if they are checking in frequently? Do they feel the restaurant should acknowledge them? We don't have good answers yet, but as this Harvard Business Review article points out, large chains like Starbucks now have access to this information and can integrate it into their loyalty programs. We expect that as customers experience such benefits at our competition, the customers will expect us to catch up at some point. Harvard Business Review: The Internet of Things is Changing... Continue reading
Reblogged Jun 13, 2015 at QViews
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Two of my Facebook friends are deceased now, but they are still in my Friends Count. Of course, I appreciate seeing their names although I don't visit their profiles. I do remember them fondly when I see their names in the list. Deceased customer names in a marketing database? Not such a good idea. Unfortunately most marketing databases are cluttered with the names of people who moved away or aged out of our market or just rearranged us out of their lives. We compete not only with chance events but with competitors who are stealing our customers. If we don't... Continue reading
Reblogged Jun 11, 2015 at QViews
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Most of us believe we have to talk in order to be persuasive, but one of the best ways is to ask good questions, listen to the answers, and integrate those answers into the way forward, acknowledging the person who contributed. PeterBregman.com: If You Want People to Listen, Stop Talking, 2015-May-26 by Peter Bregman It is easy to fall into the habit of persuasion by argument. But arguing does not change minds — if anything, it makes people more intransigent. Silence is a greatly underestimated source of power. In silence, we can hear not only what is being said but... Continue reading
Reblogged Jun 5, 2015 at QViews
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At the leading edge, our competitors are now focusing on customer success in order to grab more market share. Relationships are all well and good, but the way to know if a relationship is really working is to monitor the success of our partner. CRM software is designed to help us manage ALL our relationships: customers, prospects, teammates, and suppliers. Now we have a new software platform called Customer Success Management. Developed for companies that depend on software-as-a-service (SAAS) subscription renewal and growth, the technology imports data from ERP as well as CRM and social media accounts to monitor growth.... Continue reading
Reblogged Jun 4, 2015 at QViews
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I was reading about the difference between conservative and liberal worldviews, and the author classified loyalty as part of the conservative worldview. That makes sense, but I think it speaks to the traditional definition of loyalty as a sort of tribal value. Loyalty in a business sense is about an enterprise including in its long-term plans a commitment to recognizing and rewarding its supporters. Supporters will include customers and many other types of people who want the business to thrive. Loyalty leads to increased profits, or improved operating margins for a nonprofit. Loyalty is provided by people, not by 'customers'... Continue reading
Reblogged Jun 2, 2015 at QViews
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Whenever I become the customer of a new web service, I'm often offered the opportunity to get reward points or even discounts for promoting the service on social media or for recruiting my contacts to join. While it's not offensive, it's usually pretty useless. It's too early for me to recommend a service I just joined. I'm not the "advocate" personality type. Customer advocates are one of the very cheapest and most credible ways to promote our businesses. Unfortunately, satisfying customers and creating advocates are very different processes. A 2010 case study from Harvard Business Review found NO overlap between... Continue reading
Reblogged Jun 1, 2015 at QViews
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Part of being a leader is making sure the vision is communicated. As an innovator, I find that extremely difficult because I don't like repeating myself. I want to find a NEW thing to say. I work hard at being a good leader, but I may be missing the very first step. So onto my check list goes: Did you repeat yourself today??? First Round Review: 42 Rules to Lead by from the Man Who Defined Google's Product Strategy, 2010-Apr-2 by Jonathan Rosenberg #1 Be a broken record. “When you think you’ve communicated something too much, you’re probably just beginning... Continue reading
Reblogged May 29, 2015 at QViews
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I'm torn by the necessity of sending regular contact to customers and the desire to wait until I have something important to say. It's a natural tension, and one I just have to confront on a monthly basis. If I haven't found something to email about at the end of the month, then I have to give up and email something anyway. "I still care about you" is the message I'm trying to convey. Code School blog: Forget About Clicks, Design Emails With Purpose, 2015-May-15 by Corey Rabazinski Here at Code School, we spend a lot of time thinking about,... Continue reading
Reblogged May 20, 2015 at QViews
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I've always loved being in museums. Back in college, I thought I'd like to work in them. Fortunately, I had the opportunity to intern in a few before I left graduate school. For the advertising business. Also a mistake, but I've never regretted leaving the museum world behind. Museums are inextricably linked with commerce in art. Curators compete to acquire major works from private collectors who may donate or share the works they've acquired. The job performance of curators is often judged not by the quality of the shows but by their ability to cultivate a strong relationship with independent... Continue reading
Reblogged May 10, 2015 at QViews
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I've been worried about the email newsletter. Although it's one of the most reliable ways to provide steady customer relationship management, they are so difficult to write well. But maybe it's not the writing but the content. In the article below, Blaise Lucey makes a great comparison of the spontaneity and sense of discovery we experience in social media, in contrast to the predictability of most email newsletters. I'm inspired to follow his advice. Moveable Ink blog: Why Live Social Media Feeds Are the Future of Email + Social, 2015-Apr-27 by Blaise Lucey We don’t expect much from brand emails.... Continue reading
Reblogged May 5, 2015 at QViews
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As I build my understanding of leadership and customer experience, I'm frequently struck by leaders who struggle with the idea of culture. They want to extract the necessary culture to achieve their goals. Unfortunately, culture is so deeply rooted in the behavior of the leaders, that trying to manage it is challenging. Leaders have to manage themselves, model the behavior they want to see, and recognize it when performed by employees. Many people think good recruitment is the key to culture: 'just hire people with the right values.' Unfortunately, smart employees know how to express the values the company has... Continue reading
Reblogged Apr 29, 2015 at QViews
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Recent captures: EQ Heights coffee shop Japan Festival in Hermann Park, with blooming bonsai View from our balcony down Hermann Drive, looking west toward The Galleria Art Car Parade This sky Continue reading
Posted Apr 21, 2015 at QViews
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The homepage of BuzzFeed is a real turn-off for me, but this article by Ben Thompson has me sticking with it. It's not dignified or 'nice,' but it's very real and very hard-working. I think that's what I can respect. The writers and editors at BuzzFeed are working very, very hard to communicate all the news that we want to have online. It's a good way to understand mainstream interests, and it's not ephemeral (although the interests are). Stratechery: Why BuzzFeed is the Most Important News Organization in the World, 2015-Mar-3 by Ben Thompson In short, by not making money... Continue reading
Reblogged Apr 18, 2015 at QViews
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I spend way too much time reading. But occasionally I stumble across something that blows open my mind, making it possible for me to reach the next level of achievement, or something... a higher state of existence. If you want to go there youself, stop reading this and instead read The Web's Grain by Frank Chimero. You'll enjoy it more if you have a big screen and you may want to turn your sound low if people are nearby. I have a habit of drawing circles that represent a day in my life and then to divide it up and... Continue reading
Reblogged Apr 7, 2015 at QViews
We usually write a resume that makes us feel good. Unfortunately we are not the target audience. Asking our business associates for feedback may make us uncomfortable, but it is vital. The more like our targeted hiring managers they are, the better. Career Marketing Coach: A Little Resume Tough Love, 2015-Mar-25 by Debra Rosenfeld …because a resume is a very personal document, and it feels uncomfortable to have qualified people tell you that you need to change your very personal document. It feels much less threatening to ask for advice from people who are not qualified to give it. So,... Continue reading
Reblogged Apr 2, 2015 at QViews
Thanks to Ann Iverson for linking up this classic McKinsey article about customer experience. We are reminded that you can manage your company culture and incentives, but you cannot actually motivate people--they decide to act based on their motivation. All you can do is set the stage for them. When your organizing your team, you have to anticipate a range of good and bad motivations, plan your own reactions, make some announcements, and consider the messages your own actions are sending. Incentives should allow you to elevate some people as role models without generating too much negative competition. It's one... Continue reading
Reblogged Mar 30, 2015 at QViews
Medium: The art of asking: or, how to ask and get what you want, 2013-Sep-9 by Sarah Kathleen Peck [highlight added.] Put the ask on the table. Make it easy to find. Make your wishes known. Give alternatives if you’d like, but stick to two, maximum three. Sometimes it’s easier for people to say yes to one of two options rather than having to choose between many. Stick to just one or two things. Start with small wins. Ask incrementally for specific, small things. Get a foot in the door. Don’t ask for the big thing until you’ve established rapport,... Continue reading
Posted Mar 17, 2015 at QViews