If you thought digital marketing leadership was about large enterprises, you thought wrong.

Justin Bowser, Managing Director of HTK, is showing how a 40-person business can lead the way. Dennis caught up with Justin at Think G-Cloud 2013 in London, to see why he’s such a big believer in the cloud.

It turns out that Justin practices what his company preaches, using cloud-based programs to take better care of his own customers. For CRM, they use Salesforce.com. For billing, it’s Zuora. Both, Justin says, bolt seamlessly into the HTK Horizon platform. All of the information – from tweets about the company to whether a valuable customer has raised multiple ticket issues — helps in cross-selling and up-selling. Or simply just serving customers better.

Dennis points out that it’s not really about the transaction; it’s more about the service element. Justin agrees, adding that it’s all about getting the software ecosystem to create a whole that is greater than the sum of the parts. How quickly can they react to signals coming from the system? With the help of MongoDB, much of the information comes back in “pretty much real time”.

In the end, says Justin, it’s all about customer lifecycles — and not just about acquiring new customers. Because the acquisition cost is high. With large B2Cs like utilities, telcos and retailers focused on customer retention, why should a smaller operation be any different?

Justin says that focusing on social listening and social influence helps to identify who the leaders and influencers are. And who the long tail of their friends are. It comes down to trust, understanding that monetization of the customer is more than  OK – so long as there is an open and transparent exchange of value.


Show Notes

:30 HTK’s product helps to acquire, retain and grow B2C customers

:52 Horizon software bolts seamlessly into other cloud programs, like Salesforce

2:04 The program is less about the transaction and more about the service element

2:48 Using MongoDB to process big data in “pretty much real time”

3:32 It’s all about retaining customers once you’ve acquired them

4:20 ID leaders and the long tail of their friends via social listening and social influence

5:02 The retailer’s megaphone of yesterday belongs more to the customer of today

5:55 As an SME, HTK can build their system exactly how they want it