#144: Digital Marketing and Transformation with Robert Tas, CMO, Pegasystems

#144: Digital Marketing and Transformation with Robert Tas, CMO, Pegasystems


Today on episode number 144 of CXOTalk, I
am speaking with Robert Tas who is the Chief Marketing Officer of Pegasystems and we’re
going to be talking about digital marketing and digital transformation, so it’s an exciting
morning on episode number 144 of CXOTalk, Robert how are you? Good morning Michael, I’m terrific thanks
for having me today. Hey, thanks for talking the time first thing
on a Monday morning, and we’ve known each other for a while. You we’re on a panel
that I was fortunate enough to moderate a couple of years ago at MIT, at the MIT CIO
symposium on digital transformation, so it’s great to talk with you again. Thank you. Robert, let’s start, tell us a little bit
about your professional background and about Pegasystems so we have some context. Happy to. So my background’s probably a
little bit unique in some of the CMO’s that I talk to. My background actually started
in the technology world, where I had spent a number of years in my career at working
at enterprise technology companies like Sybase, which got acquired by SAP while ago, and then
idea that a bunch of progressive start-ups in CRM, in Internet databases, in security.
And the one thing that is kind of consistent in my career is that I’ve always been fascinated
about what technology can do for business and how it’s transforming business.
And then I got into the Internet, probably about 15 years ago and started on the technology
side, working for a company and that really was a technology company at first called Tacoda,
which really used analytics to power that Internet advertising as it’s known today
and all those great segments. And it really opened my eyes to helping connect
customers, to consumer brands, B2B brands, and how technology was really shaping the
world and how the Internet was really helping to evolve all of our lives. And then I built
my own start-up and raised some venture capital and sold the company, and spend a lot of time
in the demand side platform business. I really understood the convergence of how media was
being bought and sold, not just digitally media but all media and that was an amazing
experience. And then I ended up working at JP Morgan Chase,
in a really interesting role where I helped create its first sort of center for excellence
for digital, really trying to infuse digital into the organization and build many of its
capabilities that include you know, personalization, media buying platforms. I ran social media;
I built the first content group. It really was an amazing journey to help infuse digital
into one of our most largest and successful banks in the world and really seeing how they’re
going about their transformation. And then about a year and a half ago I joined
Pegasystems, which for those who don’t know is an enterprise technology company providing
strategic applications to the largest global companies in the world. And we serve the likes
of Horizon, Vodafone, JP Morgan, American Express, and people like that powering their
customer facing and back office systems that really drive customer experience. And it’s
been an amazing experience to come to Pega and I’ve been here just over a year and
a half. And Pega is a public company and you have
about $600 million in revenue. Yep, well a little bit more but growing. We’re
growing nicely, we’re growing in a tough category in a space that people don’t know
very well. We are actually doing very well globally. We have over 3500 employees now
and we have offices all around the world, and like I said we serve large global enterprises. Okay, so let’s talk about digital marketing,
what are the kinds of marketing activities that you undertake that you do at Pega? Well much like everybody in both the consumer
and B2B world. We have a plethora of demand generation programs, brand building programs,
thought leadership programs that we run. We recently did a pretty unique piece of digital
content with the Economist and partnering with one of our e-system integrators Accenture.
We built a digital portal on the Economist talking about digital transformation.
We’ve partnered others like Bloomberg and Forbes and really trying to bring about the
sort of enterprise issues that using digital as a way to help the buying process. One of
the things that when I joined Pega was the marketing was really much more a sales support
function, and we really tried to make it a growth engine for the company, where we were
trying to get our brand out there in a more thoughtful way, and trying to educate the
market on the big issues that are driving digital transformation in their large enterprises. So as you are seeing your customers going
through digital transformation, what are the marketing impacts of that? So how does digital
transformation change marketing? Wow, I mean that’s a topic in itself, but
its dramatic Michael. I think the reality is that marketing is being redefined by the
customer, the consumer. You know the consumer is touching all facets of the organization,
and I believe marketing is really the catalyst and the you know the Chief Customer Officer
in a way to help fight for that customer across the organization and to ensure that every
department treats that customer in the best possible way, because we no longer define
marketing as just by an ad campaign. We define marketing by our experience, and
that experience is end to end and I think that is a big transition for many companies
to try to make, where the marketing guys are now starting to touch things like the call
center. They are starting to touch things like product design. They’re starting to
touch things like fulfilment. You know, as we think of our own experiences the world
of marketing has changed so dramatically in the last few years, and I think it’s going
to continue to evolve. And I think organizations that really get
this are the ones that are at the forefront pushing their definition of really the customer
and how they are driving that customer centricity into their own organization. So Robert we hear about this term of customer
experience all the time and you said that there’s this difference between customer
experience and ad campaign, so maybe you can take us through what is the difference. I think if we all picked up our phones and
look at it and you start thinking of the applications that are on your deck you know, whether it’s
Airbnb, even your banking application you know or Über, I mean those have all redefined
what our expectations are and how we expect to interact with all brands. And I think whether
you’re B2B or B2C it’s irrelevant. I think those expectations have been now set,
and we have to respond whether it’s by a HR application internally here or my Über,
I want instantaneous feedback. I want something with immediate transparency to what I’m
trying to do. I recently purchased something on an e-commerce
site, and I’m a big big fan of the brand and I was so disappointed in their digital
experience. As you compare it to Amazon or others, it just sets the bar. And you know,
this product I ordered took almost 10 days to get to me, and they didn’t update their
website with you know tracking information, little things you take for granted now are
becoming the norm. And I know it’s a consumer example, but I think that’s in all categories.
I think you know in my business and the B2B side, we want to take our content and push
it out there. We want to have things like our product demos which never used to be online
available. We want reviews, we want people to be able to collaborate and ask questions.
We want to use digital to really help empower our customer, and I think you are seeing that
across all facets. So the skill set and the mindset and the capabilities
that are needed to for marketers to create these types of experiences as opposed to pushing
out ad campaigns is completely different. So, how did you retool marketing to be able
to conduct this type of experience type of campaign? Well, I think it’s a multiple pronged approach
there. I think you have to bring in experts in certain areas, like we have roles at Pega
that didn’t exist before I got here. You know whether you call that the analytics role
or some of the content roles that I mentioned that I created at JP Morgan. You know, it’s
really reimagining of the marketing function and then I think you have to train people.
I think you have to give them opportunities to experience. I think you have to create
boot camps. I think you have to figure out how to transfer that knowledge and experience.
I remember when I was at JP Morgan and I ran social media and we were writing the job description
for the head of social media, and the executives were saying, well let’s go and hire someone
who’s done social media at a Fortune hundred company that has 10 years, 15 years’ experience,
and well that person doesn’t exist. You know, and I think that’s the reality,
you have to reimagine these things, but you have to invest in training your folks and
giving them opportunities. You have to partner with agencies that have expertise that you
can build. But I think the most important thing is you have to have a cultural transformation
programme. You have to understand that this is a transformation and is a change to the
way you run your business. I see often people do digital off to the side,
they have the digital group, they check the box and they may be have an mobile app and
things like that. But what we’re seeing today is that those failed because the customer
gets a worse experience. The customer gets a negative experience, where they are treated
the same way as some of the other entry points. And I think that lack of connectivity into
the enterprise is hugely detrimental to their brand.
You know, my little branded story that I shared with you, you know it’s so frustrating,
you walk away and it’s such a bad taste in your mouth. But that’s how the brands
are being redefined. It’s not by when the customer actually sees you and hears from
you, but it’s those micro-moments that we like to talk about that are defining each
of our experiences. And I think it’s the companies that has
to figure out how to map to those micro-moments and really think about how everybody in the
organization is just diligently attacking those to make those frictionless, to eliminate
the customers clicks, to really help them through the process. It’s a really different
mindset. So there’s a realigning of the organization
and of the entire organization and not just marketing around what is best for the customer
and what the customer needs. Absolutely I mean you know, you used to have
and again I’m still proponed by advertising, I just think you can’t do the ad campaigns
separate to the product, to the fulfilment to the rest of the organisation. You can’t
make these promises of the marketing guy without being able to deliver on end to end on it,
and understanding that when that person clicks on that button what happens? What’s the
digital experience? What’s the connection point and how you’re going to manage that,
to all the way through to fulfilment and that entire journey. You know McKinsey loves to
talk about their customer journey, and I think it so critical to have the entire organization
bought into that vision of a customer map. But explain a little bit more why this is
the case, so right I click on a button, I want to buy something, how does this affect
the whole organization. Take us through the mechanics of it, because you’re somebody
who’s doing this. Well I mean using my e-commerce example I
logged into a website hoping to find out where that my product was. Couldn’t find it, had
to call the call center. The call center had to go and search for it. The call center had
to go back and figure out why I was calling, what my problem was. Connect that back to
the website and the web traffic that I have and there is a huge disconnect right.
So, then the customer by the way here I am, I’m calling this call center, I’m angry
and upset and 10 seconds later the brand is retargeting me with an offer. How disconnected
is that? Instead of retargeting me with thank you, or hey here’s 10% off because of your
trouble, it’s hey, here we want to sell you something and have no context with your
experience with me. I mean that’s the gravity of the real-time
nature of this, and companies that aren’t connecting those dots are going to lose. They’re
going to take that person who’s disgruntled and then there going to amplify it over and
over again in that negative context. And it’s so easy to have that break versus organization
like Amazon or Über or others that have this seamless transparent process where everybody
is connected into it. Everybody knows, oh you had a problem or you
had a dropped call or your car didn’t show up, Über’s you know emailing me 10 minutes
before saying your car is going to be late, we’ve given you a $10 coupon. It’s that
kind of experience that’s the new normal. So, okay, so you have this cultural mindset
that is bringing together everybody in the company around this reference point of the
customer. And then you pull together the right skills, but you also need technology, so there’s
a technology component to enable this as well. Michael there is and you know Pega is very
fortunate to provide some great technology, but I can’t stress enough as I talk to a
lot of my peers and our customers. I was recently at a world economic forum event, where they
had the Chief Strategy Officers of major corporations coming together, and the theme I kept hearing
from everybody was how do I get my management to buy in?
Some are creating new roles like Chief Digital Officers and I’m not a huge proponent of
that and we can talk about that, but I think this is a CEO level mandate that culturally
has to change the organization in the way you think.
You can no longer implement a product centric culture, and hope the rest of the organization
does right. Compensation structures have to change. The way you measure people’s performances
has to change, and it’s far more integrated than it’s ever been. You know, we’ve all
seen the websites where the website is disconnected from the retail store.
You know, I wanted to buy a TV a year ago and I called Costco and I wanted to go and
pick it up because I wanted it for the game and I couldn’t. They said, well our websites
aren’t connected to our stores. That’s not okay any more, that doesn’t work, and
you’ve got to take the entire structure and reimagine it from that customer’s perspective. So, you know it’s interesting that you mentioned
the Chief Digital Officer, because when I talk with CMOs and I talk with CIOs, there’s
always this question of where should the ownership of digital lie inside an organization? You know, again having been a guy that’s
created a digital function at a major corporation, you know I always viewed my job was to put
myself out of a job. It’s unfathomable for me to say that I can have one guy or one group
that runs digital for an entire organization the size of JP Morgan Chase, or others.
And the reason I say that is that everyone has to be digital. The world is digital. It’s
no longer this little thing on the side where we have our website as a brochure. The website
is a major channel like retail is. It can no longer be treated as oh someone else has
got that bulb they’ll figure it out. Every facet of a business has to be reimagined.
Every facet from legal, risk, compliant, product, and I can go down the list all have to be
accountable to what the digital experience is like.
You know, when I was doing social media at the bank, you know I had legal risk in the
meetings with me, I had educated them on how customers were going to use you know Twitter
to do service, how that was going to go about, how we were going to re-engineer our call
center to be able to handle that. It’s hugely Omni-channel right, there’s
nobody that gets a pass on this, and when I hear people higher Chief Digital Officers
I worry that though I agree they can be a catalyst, but I think ultimately this is an
organizational choice. This is a decision that a company has to make at a scale to reimagine
their business and that’s why I’m very passionate about the fact that digital has
to be a C-level, CEO level mandate and they have to be accountable to it to really affect
change. So marketing in a sense is the most visible
from the outside point of view marketing is the most visible aspect of digital, because
that’s what the customer sees when they hit the website. Yeah, I mean again marketing is that advocate
for doing what’s right for the customer. You know, the one lesson I learned from one
of my old bosses at JP Morgan, he said, ‘Robert, you have the customer card. Your job is to
make sure that we don’t screw it up. Your job is to protect the customer, make that
experience better and better every day, and use the digital technology to help improve
that’. Now, we obviously want to sell them things,
make things better, and get the right products and things like that, but we want to be thoughtful
in building that relationship and that’s the beauty of digitals, we had this amazing
set of data. That’s the other thing that we are seeing as an evolution is you can’t
have these silos of data in the organization. You have to have one view, one moment, one
set of truth around what the customer is telling you with their behavior, or even more prescriptively
their voice or their actions and being able to have all groups leverage that. There has
to be one lexicon of customer across sales, service, marketing, product and so forth. We have an interesting question from Bob Rothman
who asks, how do you differentiate between customer satisfaction and customer experience? Well I think they’re very intertwined obviously.
I think that customer satisfaction and people use MPS as a common measurement of customer
satisfaction, would they tell their friends to use the service or product, and that’s
a big one. I think that’s a telling sign. You know, in my definition is the customer’s
behavior speaks the truth. What do they do with their actions? Do they come to my website
repeatedly? Do they use my product repeatedly? Are they showing me the behaviour that I want?
You not my example of my e-commerce experience, you know if I’m that company, am I going
to go off and improve myself service? Am I going to learn from Roberts call center call
of how frustrated he was and make changes to my process? Because they didn’t need
that call, I’m a pretty digital guy. I wanted them to solve my problem on line, but I couldn’t
and it didn’t work. So, there’s an opportunity for someone to take data and improve that
experience which really then customer satisfaction is a result of. So customer satisfaction happens when the
experience is right? I even take that a step further Michael, and
say that customer satisfaction happens when an experience isn’t right but you make it
right and maybe even proactively, you know you start to predict where you’re going
to have experiences. I used my Über ones where my car was late and Über knew that
and new that I waited a long and proactively sent me a coupon to say, hey sorry, have that
on us and we are trying to make it better. You know, those are the types of micro-moments
that we have as an opportunity to transform our brand and relationship and that satisfaction.
Listen, we all live in an imperfect world, we know that things aren’t going to go perfectly,
it’s how we respond to that. So when I talked to that brand earlier and they kept telling
me ‘sorry, you’re out of luck, we don’t know what you’re talking about’, and that
just makes the customer experience bad, the satisfaction bad. But it’s when you actually
have the ability to respond, change, and learn do know and I think that’s what great brands
do out there is they take this amazing set of information and feedback and adapt their
businesses to improve. So is it safe to say that customer experience
then is the sum total of these micro-moments that you been talking about? I like that. I like that, I think that’s
very safe to say, and that’s where I come back to saying that it’s not a marketing
thing. It’s not one guy’s job to be the customer experience. You know, I went into
a hotel the other day in New York and I wanted to check my bag, and I wasn’t staying there,
and I am a Starwood Platinum guy, and the guy said no to me. You know he said it in
his New York attitude, and it just wasn’t a great experience.
Now, he doesn’t know who I am, but that brand experience is lost their, and that person
who manages that hotel has an opportunity to learn and change that. And you know, they’re
not using, they’ve got to be able to connect that entire experience through the customer’s
journey. Because one, I do a lot of events at hotels. I’m a great Starwood loyalist,
and there’s so many opportunities to just do little things like those micro-moments
and do them better and learn what’s important for your customer. But these micro-moments, I mean you have just
described why this is so difficult, because you can lay out the best campaign in the world
and have the best website. But when Robert Tas shows up at the desk, if the person behind
the desk doesn’t treat you in the right way it’s all for not. You know Michael I hear you, and you’re
right. However, what I struggle with is that I see the silos of organizations and the way
they go about learning and being iterative in the process and I think we are not pushing
the envelope. I mean the great news is that technology is available now to be able to
learn when I’m unhappy, be able to learn what my context is and experience is, and
be able to apply those things. Companies just aren’t choosing yet to apply
them. My e-commerce example today and they’re retargeting me after a bad experience. We’ve
all had that, we’ve called the call center, we’ve had a bad experience and yet you’re
seeing another ad. What a missed opportunity that is to really build my relationship, and
I think we’ve got to push the limits of really understanding this customer centricity
mindset. My experience by the way is magnified you
know, 10 times the younger you get. You have a little five year old boy, when he starts
and the computer doesn’t work, he gets frustrated and he’s five and that his bar. I think
the millennial’s, this is the new norm. We’ve got to dramatically overhaul what
customer experience means and that’s not just the website or advertising campaign,
or social media. It’s broader than that and we all have to be accountable. So the problem is when we think about customer
experience in terms of just marketing, when in fact the experience is created by these
micro-moments that comprise all of the interactions that a customer has with the brand. Absolutely, I was looking for a cell phone
the other day and I was searching around on the site, and one of these cell phone companies
took me to a webpage and it was a dead end. And it was a bad experience right, and they
lost me, and it’s because the marketing guy and the fulfilment team aren’t connected
in that journey. It’s understanding that when you make that
promise of whatever that is onto delivered that, you have to be able to deliver end to
end. You know American Express who is one of Pega customers and we run their service
backbone, and we run their service architecture. When you call American Express and have a
problem you know, it’s Pega that’s helping fix that.
What they’ve done amazingly well and I love what Jim Bush says is that you know service
and American express is no longer a silo, it’s horizontal across every single service
person at American Express, like every employee, every department has an obligation to do their
part. Whether that is getting me a new credit card because I may have lost it or getting
me money, or finding my luggage or whatever that experience is, you need to have that
end to end culture and manifested in every single thing. So this type of transformation it is so deep
and so difficult and I imagine that for most companies this would take quite a long time,
because it gets back to the cultural dimension that you were talking about at the beginning. It is it takes a long time, you know I mentioned
that thought leadership piece, we did a survey with Accenture and the Economist around digital
transformation and the survey talked about whose leading the charge, and there’s a
lot of talk about you know CMOs as the new change agent and all that. and surprising
to me, only 16% of CMOs are leading the digital transformation charge. That was a pretty shocking
stat. But what’s also surprising to me and I mentioned
that economic event I went to, is that I don’t think we’re aiming big enough. Don’t think
we’re really transforming. I think we’re making iterative change and I think we’re
seeing companies do better, don’t get me wrong, but man are we really dramatically
flipping up over the business. You know, as I think of and I struggle naming companies,
traditional brick and mortars that have made that transformation leap, and if you really
think about it I don’t know that I can show you one.
You know maybe Netflix is a great one because they went from the CD to the download and
the digital side of the world they’re probably one that come to mind in me. the one that
actually comes to mind and probably fair but I’ve got to give them huge, huge credit
is Facebook. Facebook has made this leap from being a digital company to a mobile first
company. I mean they stated their business and had a little advantage, but boy, you would
not have thought as Facebook as a mobile company when it first went public.
That’s the kind of transformation I want to see out of the traditional fortune 500.
I want to see us really raising the bar of reimagining our businesses. You know including
the hotel business right now, you now seeing what Airbnb’s doing. You know, it would
be great to check-in to my hotel room with my phone if I could, but we’re got to reimagine
business models. We’ve got to reimagine the way we engage that journey across all
of our customers and I saw today that Marriott is going to try to buy Starwood.
You know, good scale, but how are they reimagining their business and how are they using digital
to really drive that organization forward. You know I wanted to mention regarding Facebook,
how when they went public, they went public about 28 I believe and the reason the stock
went down below the offering price, precisely for the reasons you we’re describing and
their concerns about their ability to transform to mobile and now, having done this so well
the stock is up over 100. That’s a great example of a CEO that stepped
up and said, ‘oh my god, this is going to change and here’s how we’re going to do
it’, and I think that’s how you shift culture. And I get it, it’s really really
hard when you make billions and billions of dollars of doing something a certain way.
But again, every major business is going to be – if it already hasn’t then be disrupted.
If I’m in the insurance business, the healthcare business, Child co I mean I could go on and
on. I’d love to see these companies really pushing the envelope and I don’t mean opening
a little office in Silicon Valley or hiring a couple of digital guys from Google. It’s
really a dramatic transformation that has to come and I think that’s a C-level, board
level mandate. What about CRM, Customer Relationship Management,
what’s happening to CRM in this world in which the customer relationships are changing
in so many different ways. Well Michael I mean you know the talk we just
had about digital transformation, I think CRM is being transformed. I remember you know
when Siebel first came out and really set the bar of what CRM and the promise of. Honestly,
I think if we all look back CRM has not lived up to the promise of what it should have been.
And I think today depending on your definition, whether it’s salesforce automation or call
center automation, you know CRM today is needing to be and being pushed to do a heck of a lot
more. You know, as we think of digital transformation
the ability to connect the customer from the front office to the back office, takes CRM
to a whole new level. You know having those truths that I talked about earlier or having
one place that has one 306 degree view of the customer is paramount to deliver CRM effectively
because the people that are touching your customer is a heck of a lot broader than it
was a few years ago. You’re no longer in that one silo doing
your thing, you’re now required to connect across the enterprise and have a common set
of information to make better business decisions to empower that customer, and by the way,
to empower that customer at a speed that your organization has never thought of.
You can no longer do things in days, months, and ours. It’s seconds, the customer wants
their information and everybody has to be able to move at that, and I think that CRM
being something that’s now global in requirement it needs to have predictive and adaptive analytics,
it needs to be able to change to that new thing.
We no longer live in a world where we can buy a system, put down several million dollars,
plug it ain’t and walk away for 20 years. Those days have gone. The reality is that
we’ve got to change, we’ve got new things coming, Snapchat WhatsApp or whatever those
things like be. We’ve got to figure out how to harness new information into the ecosystem
within our customer’s world, being able to apply that across all of our businesses
in a speed that is just redefined in how we go to market. That’s a really interesting point, so historically,
CRM was essentially a database of let’s say documenting communication transactions
with a customer. An incomplete list of transactions. Okay an incomplete list of transactions, so
I call the customer, I’m a salesperson, I put it in the CRM system and send the customer
an email, it’s in the CRM system. So now with customer experience touching all of these
different channels that you were describing, so when you talk about a 360 view of the customer
elaborate a little more about what you mean by that and how it’s different from CRM
in the past. Well several things. First of all, the dataset
that in that 360 view, like you said is no longer just a transaction. I’m sure you
can name companies that have you in their email database, there direct mail database,
and their web database and those don’t talk to each other.
You know I subscribe to a print publication, and yet I still get offers in the mail, or
a credit card company I called the product that I keep getting offers sent to me. You
know, the reality is CRM became that silo of this customer record, but never became
the place where all the customer data is stored, bind and optimized and I think that’s the
evolution as companies are now realizing that they have to have this central repository
and they need a brain and they need analytics and technology to help the organization optimize
that experience. You know, when I go to a Horizon or my bank,
I want to be able to get an offer that’s right for me, not for this segment but for
me based on my family, my situation. And I think that companies have to figure out how
to connect the dots, and that’s why I say that it’s not just about data it’s about
connecting data, people, process across the entire journey.
It doesn’t do me any good to make an offer that I’m going to reject, or I’m going
to get reject for if my credits not good. That’s only going to hurt my brand. It’s
really important to be able to take those pieces and connect the natural workflow, business
rule associated with that CRM view of the entire customer interaction.
it’s kind of like my e-commerce example, they’re targeting me and ad is something
that the pixels set up on that website because I went to it. It has no connection to the
customer service experience that I had, and they are missing an opportunity to leverage
that engagement. So how does the data that lives inside a CRM
system, how can that be used to then actually be able to make real improvements in the customer
experience. What’s the connection between the data and the ultimate experience? Well I think when we first started the conversation
is you have to look at those micro-moments that the customer is showing you where there
is engaging, how there is engaging, they’re time spent. You know, using my e-commerce
example this morning, I spent probably 10 minutes in my profile page on that e-commerce
website and didn’t do anything. If you look at my click stream, my click patterns it didn’t
do anything, because I was talking to the agent of that experience, they’ve got to
take that in mind that and say, well can we see a pattern here. And then they’ve got
to connect the processes to enable change of that.
they’ve got to create a loop that says, ‘what else are we doing to touch this customer,
oh we’re selling them and ad oh my God, we shouldn’t be giving him and ad when he’s
a dissatisfied customer’. You’ve got to take that journey and break it into those
components and how to understand how to create the organization to be able to leverage it.
You can’t have the digital marketing guys pounding ad’s out there, and the service
people trying to close call volume or call time. Those can’t be the metrics that are
defining customer experience today. So you’ve got this body of data and the
customer comes in and now has some type of interaction and the system basically immediately
then needs to compare that interaction with data that is stored in order to trigger some
type of next event in the sequence. And that next event has to be absolutely appropriate
to this particular customer and that’s what creates the micro-moments that you’ve been
talking about. I sometime say its common sense right, you
have to pass the smell test, you have to do things. There’s a set of journeys we all
have whether it’s in our own companies or in others that we should know with some predictability
of what we want to occur. You know, when I go in and I type ‘refund’
on a website, it should know what I’m trying to do. It should know what to send me to,
how it should help me and it should be able to connect my digital footprint to the call
center if I choose to go that path. And it should also say, how can we get Robert what
he needs in a way that I don’t need to call the call center. I would have been happy to
do it myself, proven that self-service is a really big thing. There’s so many learning
moments there that the organization has to take and apply across the board. It’s not
in one department; it’s across all those departments. What’s the best way for the organization
to in a sense to use the term model those customer interactions in the right way because
it requires so much of a detailed understanding of what the customer is doing at so many different
moments in time. Well ironically one of the things that I tell
people that they should do as sort of 101s, step one is go and be a customer yourself
you know and actually see the journey and experience it across all devices. Experience
it across on how you would do it on a mobile phone, tablet and so forth and you know, it’s
a huge eye opening experience. Number two, listen to all the call center
calls. Three, look at all the drop-offs in different phases in the journey as you would
predict. You know I think those are all things that you could rally and create culture change
around and really be able to reimagine those experiences, and you have to make this cultural
where everybody in your organization is going after this, and everybody is aligned in solving
those and removing friction through the process. Okay Robert, we only have about five minutes
left and so for somebody who’s listening that is thinking, god, I want to do all of
this but it’s like rocket science. Where should this person start? I think you have to start by creating a culture
in the organization that says the customer is at the center of our business, the customer’s
going to drive and make every decision around our strategy around our operation and is going
to be our true North. And that’s a big big statement just so we’re clear.
I’ve been to a lot of presentations where everybody says we’re going to be customer
centric and we’re going to do this, but there’s some real tenancy to making that
decision. There’s some hard choices that you’re going to have to make. Things are
not going to be popular; they’re going to cost money. It’s a big decision to really
make that decision to put that customer in the center.
The second thing you need to do is bring in experts and different pieces of that customer
experience that can influence the whole. So I think bringing in digital, mobile, analytics,
those content skills are important to the team. I don’t believe you can replace your
entire team. I think you’ve got to bring in and infuse that expertise and you’ve
got to create a collaborative culture to be able to take that in, that’s why I don’t
love the Chief digital Officer because I feel like sometimes business owners say they’re
digital so they’ll figure it out. That doesn’t kind of work that way; you all have to be
on the hook for that. That’s why I think each team member across all the functional
areas needs to bring in some of this digital native skillsets
And then third and final, is you’ve got to hold yourself accountable to the customer.
Customers don’t like their behaviors, how they use stuff, how they go about stuff. They
show you with their actions how and what they like, what they don’t like and by the way
ask them. they’ll tell you, they want to give you feedback. They want to be a part
of the process. You know they want to make their experience better and that I think is
an amazing shift in our world where the customers are actually dying to be part of it.
And when you have brand loyalists like me with my experience today, I’m dying to help
that company figure out how to make it better because I want to give them my business. But
if they don’t and if they continue to ignore my feedback and ignore my three calls to the
call center and my web traffic, I’m going to leave. I’ll find somebody who won’t,
and I think those imperatives are critical for organizations to go take. So create the right culture, get the skills
in place that you need, be accountable to the customer and actually listen to the customer. Yes. I guess that’s a pretty good summery of
what’s needed. Obviously it’s easier said than done by far. It is. You know, I think that it’s just
such an amazing time to be in the market suite and to have that moniker and that mandate,
that ethos right now. It’s such an exciting time. I wake up every day enthusiastic, excited,
a little petrified but I just think we’re in such an amazing time; we’re redefining
everything. Nothing has to be done the way it was done
last time, or last year or whenever. We have a clean slate and our customers will tell
us what they like and we can build on that and we just want to listen and to be able
to move in a sea that’s very different. We’re not doing you know, 12, 24 month planning
cycles anymore. We have instantaneous feedback. We’ve just got to train our organizations
to listen and to be able to take advantage of the and you know, the next five years of
marketing is going to be a heck of a ride. Okay, Robert Tas, this has been very eye-opening
about digital transformation and the role of marketing. We have been speaking with Robert
Tas, who is the Chief Marketing Officer of Pegasystems and you have been watching episode
number 144 of CXOTalk, Robert thank you so much for taking the time today. Thank you thanks for having me. It’s been a very very fast 45 minutes, and
Robert we’ll have to do it again another time. Everybody thank you again and have a
great day, bye bye.

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