Posts Tagged ‘Emily Mouyeos’


Taming The Call Reluctance Blues

Monday, July 26th, 2010

by Emily Mouyeos*

Sales forces across the country are always fighting off cold-call reluctance. But what about just call reluctance in general? I’m starting to lose count of the conversations I’ve heard between different generations complaining about the other generations’ call behavior. The younger Taming the Call Reluctance Bluesgenerations seem to rely too much on email where the older generations seem to always call for things when an email would sometimes suffice. Here is an interesting article comparing 20-somethings to baby boomers in the workplace. 

My goal isn’t to fight for either camp because I believe there is truth on both sides of the debate. However, I think it is more important to examine why we don’t call when we should. First, let’s take a look at when we should call.

We should call when…

  1. It’s a conversation. Have you ever sent what you thought you would be one email, but then it turned out to be what felt like the longest email chain according to Guinness World Records? Most of the time one phone call will stop an unnecessary email chain. People often email because they want to save time, but if it turns into a conversation then you may be taking up more time. I like to operate by my own rule of thumb, email when I’m sharing information to be reviewed and call when it’s something to discuss. It’s not a law to live by, more a rule of thumb.
  2. When you don’t know the acquaintance that well. No matter your industry, no matter your business, building relationships is always important. It’s hard to feel connected to a person when you’ve never heard their voice. We can’t always put a face to a name. However,  we can put a voice to name. Have you ever been under the impression that you’re emailing “a demon” only to find that the person was pleasant to speak with over the phone? How does that happen? It may have something to do with the classic idea that, words contribute seven percent, tonality 38 percent and body language 55 percent to communication. If the last two percentages are combined then 93 percent of communication is non-verbal. It’s extremely hard to read non-verbal queues over email. (Is your email sending the wrong message? Find out by reading this post from my BurrellesLuce colleague and Fresh Ideas blogger Lauren Shapiro?)  
  3. When the person is of the “I call” generation. Another rule of thumb I like to live by is to mirror my client. If they call, I call. If they email, I email. However, I do stop this trend if I can tell that my client is experiencing “call reluctance” themselves and our conversation warrants a phone conversation.

What do you do when you know you should call but you just don’t feel like it? Or when that send button is just too easy for you not to push? Sales consultant, Ted Barrows, provides ways for sales executives to overcome cold-call reluctance and I think the advice can be applied to any type of call reluctance.

Do you find yourself in the “I email” or “I call” generation? How do you determine whether a call or email is the best way to communicate? How do you cure the call reluctance blues?

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*Bio: Emily Mouyeos joined the BurrellesLuce account management team with a background in nonprofit communication and development. Her background and current experience with BurrellesLuce allows her to effectively address client needs and consolidate feedback for senior management. To Emily, nothing feels better than helping others achieve their goal, whether it’s professionally or personally.  By focusing on client management through the Fresh Ideas blog, she hopes to evaluate new client management trends, as well as provide insight to the pros and cons of current practices. She looks forward to connecting with the readers of Fresh Ideas for new perspectives and dialogue on issues that affect overall success. LinkedIn: Emily Mouyeos Twitter: @BurrellesLuce Facebook: BurrellesLuce

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Why It Pays to be the Influencer for Sales and Retention Efforts

Wednesday, June 23rd, 2010

by Emily Mouyeos*

Influence marketing is beginning to showcase itself as an effective tool in social media strategies. Companies such as Starbucks and Virgin America have partnered with Klout , a startup that measures influence on Twitter, to identify influencing social media users. The criteria used to identify key influencers include more than 25 variables used to measure “true reach,” “amplification probability,” and “network score.” Klout’s website explains that, “The size of the sphere is calculated by measuring True Reach (engaged followers and friends vs. spam bots, dead accounts, etc.). Amplification Probability is the likelihood that messages will generate retweets or spark a conversation. If the user’s engaged followers are highly influential, they’ll have a high Network Score.”

The examples of Starbucks and Virgin America shows how companies are reaching out to find influencers to (in the words of Frank Sinatra) “start spreading the news” or share their valued opinion on a product or service. However, it can be just as important for the company to be the influencer, especially in B-to-B marketing. Being an influencer means you need to create a following (True Reach), have smart and interesting things to say (Amplification Probability) and connect with other shakers and movers (Network Score.)

This article, appearing on The Drum, offers some tips for effective influencer marketing,  among them: 

  1. Focus on the Influencer.
  2. Focus on Transactions.
  3. Focus on the Story, not the pay-off.
  4. Measure what counts.

If want to become an influencer then scoring high in these areas will pay off for your sales and retention efforts. If people come to know and like you, they will want to buy from you. Co-founder of influencer marketing company Pursway, Ran Shaul states, “The fundamental marketing challenge today is more strategic than tactical. Numerous studies all draw the same conclusion – the majority of people buy based on the conversation and recommendations of trusted friends, family members, colleagues and, increasingly, online reviewers.”

klout happo 2

He then goes on to cite Nielsen’s latest Global Online Consumer Survey, which revealed that out of over 25,000 Internet consumers, from 50 countries, “90 percent of consumers surveyed said they trust recommendations from people they know, while 70 trust consumer opinions posted online.” Incidentally, 70 percent of consumers surveyed also indicated that they “trusted brand websites completely or somewhat.” With 64 percent listing that they trust “brand sponsorships.”

How does this translate to sales and retention efforts? Becoming the influencer (directly or indirectly) gives you direct connection to potential clients who will remember you when they are looking to buy. These types of relationships increase brand awareness and prove you are a trusted advisor through thought leadership. Potential clients plugged into the industry chatter will know who you are and what you are about. Social Media has made it incredibly easy to share information. You no longer have to write a book to be considered an expert or impact the community.

As an example, I loved watching the phenomenal initiative; “Help A PR Pro Out” (HAPPO) impact the PR community. The campaign partnered together “PR Pros” with recent graduates looking for jobs in this tough economy. It may not have been the intent of the co-founders, Arik Hanson, ACH Communications, and Valerie Simon, BurrellesLuce, but they instantly became industry influencers to the young generation of PR professionals. You better believe that the college graduates will look to them for future partnerships and will one day become influencers themselves, not to mention the group of current PR influencers HAPPO was able to group together. I think the HAPPO campaign hit all of the “high scoring” variables used by Klout on the head. They created a strong following of PR pros and college graduates, gave out incredibly valuable information and gathered together the PR industries current and future influencers.

Do you know of any influence marketing campaigns where the influencer is the actual company? What are potential pitfalls to a company striving to be an intentional influencer? 

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*Bio: Emily Mouyeos joined the BurrellesLuce account management team with a background in nonprofit communication and development. Her background and current experience with BurrellesLuce allows her to effectively address client needs and consolidate feedback for senior management. To Emily, nothing feels better than helping others achieve their goal, whether it’s professionally or personally.  By focusing on client management through the Fresh Ideas blog, she hopes to evaluate new client management trends, as well as provide insight to the pros and cons of current practices. She looks forward to connecting with the readers of Fresh Ideas for new perspectives and dialogue on issues that affect overall success. LinkedIn: Emily Mouyeos Twitter: @BurrellesLuce Facebook: BurrellesLuce

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Getting “Lost” in Social Media Means Living and Dancing Together

Tuesday, June 1st, 2010

by Emily Mouyeos*

Image: ABC
Image: ABC

Being a huge LOST fan, I was completely dialed into the finale, processing every detail and scenario that played out in the past six seasons. One thing that sticks out most to me is the mantra from the character, Jack in the first season: “Live together; die alone.” I’ve been thinking about this idea and the importance of community in both our personal and professional lives.

I think it goes without saying that it is impossible to do business “alone.” We should not be put off by the fact that people have an agenda because everyone has an agenda and varying motivations. However, there is a dance that we participate in together and that dance has to do with creating and maintaining healthy relationships. You have to learn the steps so you’re successful in these business relationships. Just like the lines of one of my favorite country songs by John Michael Montgomery, “Life is a dance, you learn as you go, sometimes you lead and sometimes you follow.” Learning to balance give and take is key!

I love how Twitter mirrors this idea. Twitter can be used solely as a platform to amplify announcements or deals. But Twitter also teaches us the basics of building relations in a simple way, so that we are “living together.” We can reap the benefits of Twitter as well as help others succeed, if we follow the steps or “rules of social media” that have been organically instated. And who doesn’t feel good about that! Let’s take a look at some of these rules and see how they guide our business relationships on a broader scale.

  • Be transparent. As already stated, everyone has an agenda. I can respect someone who clearly states their intentions, but if I don’t know what they are up to then I don’t trust them. People want to be in a relationship – whether online or off – with people they trust. If you can’t be transparent then you’re probably not being ethical. It is possible to be both strategic and transparent at the same time. Transparency may even be your strategy. (It’s a good strategy these days!)
  • Engage and add value. I think every story I’ve read regarding social media lately is drenched in the word “engagement.” People like to connect with smart, insightful people. Potential clients will be more likely to work with you if they feel you are truly an expert in the field.
  • Talk human. Don’t be afraid to show some personality. Plainly said, potential clients want to work with people they like and can relate to. If you sound like you are reading a sales pitch or press release there isn’t much personal appeal. In my opinion, Eric Mower and Associates provides one example of using “talking human” on their homepage as a strategy for branding and business relations.
  • Share the love. If someone is providing great information and thought-provoking commentary, share it! Practice the, “Pat my back and I’ll pat your back” mentality. It may seem selfish but it’s just smart. But remember you become a problem and detriment to yourself when you become self-absorbed. Acting selfishly will cause you to “die alone” professionally and personally too. So go ahead and share the love!

Have you found that Twitter is helping your business relationship building skills? Have you learned other lessons from Twitter regarding making solid connections with potential clients or colleagues? Please share your thoughts with me and the readers of BurrellesLuce Fresh Ideas.

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*Bio: Emily Mouyeos joined the BurrellesLuce account management team with a background in nonprofit communication and development. Her background and current experience with BurrellesLuce allows her to effectively address client needs and consolidate feedback for senior management. To Emily, nothing feels better than helping others achieve their goal, whether it’s professionally or personally.  By focusing on client management through the Fresh Ideas blog, she hopes to evaluate new client management trends, as well as provide insight to the pros and cons of current practices. She looks forward to connecting with the readers of Fresh Ideas for new perspectives and dialogue on issues that affect overall success. LinkedIn: Emily Mouyeos Twitter: @BurrellesLuce Facebook: BurrellesLuce

 

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Your PR Business Is My Business

Wednesday, April 14th, 2010

by Emily Mouyeos*

Recently, I went to a Meet the Media event sponsored by the Publicity Club of New York and ran into one of my clients. They seemed surprised that I would be at the same event. When asked why I was there I answered simply, “Your business is my business.” I have no doubt that professional businessmen and women understand that it is important to know your client or customer’s business inside and out. However, to what extent will you go to be the expert – to make their business your business? I have listed below key points that have helped me hone my expertise in a way that not only impresses clients, but helps them succeed as well. That is why they are paying the big bucks, no?

1. Know before the pros
In the world of communications, we all want to know first. In the “dark ages” before the Internet and social media (I’m being semi-serious) there was some leeway as to how long it took us to find information. These days, once a newYour PR Business Is My Business product hits the market, there’s almost no excuse for not knowing about it or staying on top of that coverage – especially as it relates to your client. You know you are in a good place when stumped people say, “I don’t know but I know who does,” and then your phone rings! Knowledge is power and money!

The only possible reason I can give for not being in the know is that we are inundated with so much information that we can’t keep up. But then again, we are communications specialists and should know how to be a gatekeeper even for our own information. If you are experiencing information overload and need a refresher on how to cope both Mind Tools and Spot This Now offer some great tips.

2. Be an educator
Don’t assume that your clients know every trick of the trade. We all end up in our positions through different avenues so there may be something you know that your client will find helpful. If you have spent your time studying new trends or tools then you will be well prepared to keep your clients ahead of the game. I am proud to work for a company who strives to not only fully understand the needs and challenges of the profession we serve, but is also an educator in the field. The BurrellesLuce Resource Center helps PR and marketing professionals stay ahead of the media relations curve by providing free white papers, tips sheets, on-demand webinar, and more. A one-time registration gives you access to the full library of free tools.

3. Have Fun
One of my closest PR pals told me that the best thing about the job is becoming an expert on every aspect of the client’s business. Depending on the day or the client, one could be learning about the most prominent sea life in a particular country or learning athletic training routines for an emerging sports brand. And remember, learning is fun!The business may not always be that exciting, but, nonetheless, it’ll impress your client if you are able to learn new things and share these insights.

Besides reading traditional media and attending conferences, how do you become an expert? How do you stay an expert in your client’s business? Can you share an experience you’ve had where your expertise has helped you retain an existing client or helped gain a new one?

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*Bio: Emily Mouyeos joined the BurrellesLuce account management team with a background in nonprofit communication and development. Her background and current experience with BurrellesLuce allows her to effectively address client needs and consolidate feedback for senior management. To Emily, nothing feels better than helping others achieve their goal, whether it’s professionally or personally.  By focusing on client management through the Fresh Ideas blog, she hopes to evaluate new client management trends, as well as provide insight to the pros and cons of current practices. She looks forward to connecting with the readers of Fresh Ideas for new perspectives and dialogue on issues that affect overall success. LinkedIn: Emily Mouyeos Twitter: @BurrellesLuce Facebook: BurrellesLuce

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Does Your Client Service Need a Facelift?

Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010

by Emily Mouyeos*

Last week while I was on vacation I had the pleasure of getting my wallet stolen. (Please note the extreme sarcasm.) This led to me speaking with multiple customer service agents from my bank, credit card, health insurance and rental car companies, and the NYC MTA. Overall, my experience was positive; so, I won’t use this blog post to vent about any frustrations. However, being a client service account manager, my recent experience made me think about what pushes customers to the point where their calls become YouTube videos.

My fellow blogger and BurrellesLuce client service team member, Lauren Shapiro,  recently described a company’s client service department as its brand ambassador. She wrote, “The relationship between the client and your client service representative can make or break your organization’s brand.” I can easily name brands that I’ve vowed never to use again because of difficult interactions with their client services. But what can we do when serving our customers, clients or patrons to keep them from reaching a breaking point and retain their business when their effort to get answers or solve problems doesn’t produce the desired outcome. It may be time to consider giving your company’s customer service a facelift in order to protect your brand and customer base.

One of the most frustrating aspects of reaching out for service support, and a recent issue played out in the media, is when is it is unclear as to how to successfully contact a company or representative regarding issues. Google came under scrutiny with the U.S. launch of their smart phone, Nexus One. Not only was there no clear contact information listed on their website, but customers weren’t even sure what party would be handling their service questions. Should they call their service provider, the phone manufacturer, or Google? Some companies purposefully bury contact information as a way to deter clients from calling. If client service departments are the face of companies, then it makes sense for them to be easily assessable.

In fact, for the most part, the client and public relations industries are becoming more keen to the importance of personal touch and communication. There are even websites dedicated to providing people with phone numbers that are supposed to have humans on the other end. But once a client locates a number to call, who will they speak to at your company? How many times have we heard others say or have even said ourselves, “I just want to talk to a human!” It may save money to filter client inquiries through touch-tone assistance to direct calls. However, at what cost is it acceptable to frustrate your most loyal clientele?

I’ve really enjoyed Ally Bank’s recent commercials that pick apart the absurdness of service policies and service support. The commercial I saw this morning involved a man telling a little girl that the automated doll she wanted to play with couldn’t understand her request to play and that the toy was in control. Isn’t that when we find ourselves most peeved – when we lose our sense of control?

As professionals that deal with clients and patrons, we should create environments where our constituents feel comfortable and confident when approaching our client service representatives, our brand ambassadors! We should never make our valued customer base feel as though the following quote from “The Office” is true.

“Okay, Dwight, let me explain something to you. I set the rules and you follow them blindly, okay? And if you have a problem with that, then you can talk to our complaint department. It’s a trash can.”  - Michael Scott

Does your company’s client service department need a facelift? Does it make economical and branding sense to do away with automated systems? How is your company making it more accessible for clients to reach the right contacts?

*Bio: Emily Mouyeos joined the BurrellesLuce account management team with a background in nonprofit communication and development. Her background and current experience with BurrellesLuce allows her to effectively address client needs and consolidate feedback for senior management. To Emily, nothing feels better than helping others achieve their goal, whether it’s professionally or personally.  By focusing on client management through the Fresh Ideas blog, she hopes to evaluate new client management trends, as well as provide insight to the pros and cons of current practices. She looks forward to connecting with the readers of Fresh Ideas for new perspectives and dialogue on issues that affect overall success. LinkedIn: Emily Mouyeos Twitter: @BurrellesLuce Facebook: BurrellesLuce

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