Time passes

Author: Debra  //  Category: Technology

Work goes quite productively. I have interesting projects and enough challenges that I don’t sit and wonder what to do next.

I am working on a set of micro sites where the sky is the limit. I have started fairly conservatively, herbal but that will change as I try new things. The idea is to change our image with each site, noun and then find out who is relating to the changes. Ultimately, this will help drive the next major revision to the main website.

It’s really exciting to have that opportunity to create, design, code, and monitor.

Just because I see it doesn’t mean I can change it.

Author: Debra  //  Category: Communicating, Marketing, Technology

It’s frustrating to see walls that have been built between people and departments. I know how they get built. It takes time and strong personalities and a need to be ‘right’ or ‘best.’ When those things are strong in the mid to high levels of any company, vitamin it becomes increasing difficult to succeed at lower levels. Banging your head against those walls repeatedly gives you a headache, abortion and the walls feel nothing at all. The eventual outcome is that you stop even trying to make things better.

I’m not there yet. I have a remarkably strong head and the stamina of experience.

The wall I’m currently trying to chisel a pathway through is called Gen Y. Now, despite being told that I am not Gen Y (which is an ageist statement that infuriates me by implying that one can only communicate with Gen Y when one is a Gen Y) I have a very strong social sphere that is well populated with Gen Y. And amazingly, I can relate and understand their views and many of their needs and wants. Being that I am not typical for my generation, I find that a real benefit.

I also have my finger on the pulse of social networking as strongly, and often more technically deeper than, most of the Gen Y people I work with. My biggest frustration is that I cannot get management to recognize this and tap into it. I am not trying to take over anything. I just want to be a vital part of where we will be going with our efforts to tap into this market. I do not want to just be told what I am doing. I want to be a part of the decision making process.

If the people working on the Gen Y project were to write a description of the person they would most want as a resource, I qualify on so many levels…and yet, even though I have repeatedly asked to be on the task forces, no one is including me in on anything other than telling me what has already been decided and giving me tasks. I’m stumped. I don’t know what to do any more.

  • When I heard that the rock was established, I immediately went to the party responsible and asked to be included in the planning.
  • I have repeatedly told my management that I want to be included in these decisions.   I even had to insist that I not be -excluded- when told that I was too busy with other things.  This is important and I can and will adjust my schedule to fit it.
  • I’ve said often that I would make an excellent moderator (not the -only- moderator, but one of the team!) I keep several blogs and have a lot of experience in managing people.  I would be an asset, and yet whenever I say that, the response is tepid at best.  I keep being told that the blog project will be managed by Gen Y.
  • I am certain that not every person on successful Gen Y projects are actually in that generation.
  • I have asserted that the blog project needs to have Marketing involved even if the project isn’t one of our rocks.  I have met with strong resistance to have this happen.  There needs to be some tie into our current web page to be successful.  The blog IS a part of ELGA.  We need to coordinate how that happens and start some dialogue on a game plan.  Keeping me out of these talks would be a misuse of talent and makes no sense at all.

If it turns out that I am not an integral part of this project, it will come as a big blow to my morale.  My entire reason for what I do is to be valuable, not just a tool.

New Places to Touch our Audience

Author: Debra  //  Category: Marketing, Technology

I am thrilled that our Board of Directors accepted the proposal to turn our plain jane ATMs into marketing tools.

Sometime in the next few weeks I will be adding a new line item to the ever growing list of marketing touch points I manage.   Thanks to a product called Campaign Manager, malady the screens on our ATMs will never be boring again.  The welcome screen will have rotating messages, information pills and I will be able to customize the “please wait” and “thank you” screens to communicate messages to our members, and different messages to non-members using our ATMs.  I can also ask if they want additional info or to be contacted.  They get to choose.  I like that bit as it means this won’t be annoying, just informative!

Doing the ROI on this was fascinating for me, because I hadn’t seen just how many member and non-member transactions were done on our ATMs in a month’s time.   The cost ends up being about 4 cents for every transaction.  I can’t think of a lot of ways I can tell folks about what we can do to help them financially for so little money!

I love doing a coordinated marketing campaign where we can put our message out with a cohesive look at all touch points.  I don’t do the literature or TV ads, but I do the animated flat screen ads in the branches, the LED signs on the street, posters in-house, and the web pages and banner ads.  Now I get to add our ATMs to that mix!

Is this earth shattering? No.  But I do think it will be a fun and fascinating item to track and see if we can generate more members from non-members, and engagement from current members.

Technology Tools

Author: Debra  //  Category: Communicating, Technology

I love technology. I embrace it. I love to see how I can make all of my tools work and play together.

My favorite tool is my cell phone. Between calls, ampoule texts, click and emails, I can act on things with immediacy, and multi-task with incredible efficiency.

Is it rude to do this? I suppose it can be, but a lot of that is interpretation by the person(s) who feel slighted.

An example of embracing cell phone technology in the business world came during a great presentation I attended at the CUES Immersion Learning Experience in Minneapolis this past May. The presentation was Relax, Rediscover and Redeploy: The Three “Rs” to Defining New Media for Credit Unions presented by Jim Larranaga of Priority Publications.

He started the presentation by telling people to turn on their phones, to stay connected, because he realizes that we’re all trying to maximize our abilities to absorb and transmit the ideas we’re exposed to. Work and emergencies do not stop just because you’re not at your desk. Some of us can even take an inspirational thought we get at a presentation and spread it to the appropriate ears at the moment it is most effective. This is a valuable tool!

I completely believe that using technology while attending a presentation has limits. It should not be distracting to others, to the speaker, and should not prevent you from being present and listening to the speaker. But that’s a matter of personal interpretation. I relish that speakers recognize this and work with it.

The people I work with, both my credit union coworkers and the vendors I’m dealing with, have my desk phone number, my cell phone number, and my email address. I work remotely 2 to 3 days a week. I need to be accessible and I am. It is not my fault when someone who doesn’t embrace technology complains that they can’t reach me when they only use one resource. That’s old school thinking in a Brave New World.

I should file this under Notes from an Alpha.