Tamara was ranked the #1 individual influencer at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain. She surpassed well known brands such as Ericsson, Huawei, Apple, HPE and many more. In addition to her own ranking, Tamara’s agency, Thulium, along with her leadership, ran the social campaign for Exponent, a new brand from Verizon, assisting them to an unprecedented ranking at #15.
Tamara was recently quoted as one of 11 experts in the Alexa article Marketing Quotes 2016: 11 Experts Reveal Their Biggest Takeaways. You can find Tamara’s excerpt below:
The biggest challenge I believe we are facing for marketers is the continued fragmentation of a variety of marketing channels and the challenges which go with it. The shift away from television and towards mobile by millennials, and frankly other generations is picking up speed. The introduction of streaming audio and video, social media and more creates a challenge for marketers on where to put their hard earned marketing dollars without losing their message in a sea of voices. This is why I continue to encourage my clients to refine and execute campaigns based on their brand message, along with investing in the tools to better understand where their customers are spending their time.
You can read the rest of the Alexa article here.
With almost 5,000 people in attendance, along with many top brands at the Channel Partners Conference in Las Vegas, NV, Tamara again topped the leaderboards as the most influential individual or brand at a 2016 technology trade show and conference according to iTrend Analytics. This follows #1 showings at DistribuTECH, IBM Interconnect and Enterprise Connect, along with being the #1 individual at the RSA Conference (#2 overall), and #2 individual at the NRF Big Show (#6 overall).
You can view the complete report, along with a scrollable Top 100 list, by clicking here to view the entire report by iTrend.
This year’s IBM Interconnect Conference in Las Vegas brought thought leaders, tech executives, numerous companies and approximately 30,000 people from around the globe to discuss the future of technology in Cloud, Mobile, IoT and Cognitive Computing. In the midst of such a dynamic conference, Tamara McCleary emerged as the top social influencer per iTrend Data Analytics, placing higher than numerous respected IBM divisions and other top companies.
With almost 4,000 interactions, Tamara was the top engager at the conference and consistently lead the IBM Social Leaderboard in number of retweets. To read the entire iTrend Data Analytics Report, with scrollable Top 100 and links to each social account, click here.
(This point forward is a continuation from Tamara’s Facebook post with a link to this page.)
Yes, I do consciously post my good news, your good news, mostly the good stuff…because we all have enough sticky places we negotiate on a daily basis. I am also trying to practice in real life what I preach. I attempt to model and reflect for my own daughter….your daughter (your future daughter perhaps), and for our female colleagues and friends that it is “ok” to post things that are positive about ourselves, that there’s no medal in diminishing ourselves to make those around us “approve” of us and “like” us.
But even in the midst of sharing our good news and our “wins” and projecting the confidence we must project to live into it. To mirror the positive, the professional, it’s okay to stay real, sometimes messy, disorganized, and not always living in a state of having it together. Ask any of my IRL (in real life friends), I’m riddled with home challenges between a teenaged son with immense physical and behavioral challenges, and trying to be all things to all people. And it’s crushing when we realize we can’t always be that.
I got home Thursday night from working in Las Vegas, and feeling really uplifted by the job I did… I mean it was like moving a mountain to stay on-top at a convention of 30,000 people with global companies in attendance. Conferences are challenging enough, but trying to amplify at these ginormous events and get to and maintain a position in the lead…as a solo woman (I’m not a global organization, just one woman), is an astronomical undertaking. I was wrung out (and I’m an introvert who plays extroversion for work). I walked in the door to my home after driving home from the airport and literally hollered to the family, “Hey guys! I’m home!” And then got the hugs I crave from my soulmate hubby and snuggled into the incessant chatter of my son, Parker, as he filled me in on his latest favorite pop songs and acquisitions from the thrift store, his obsession, (he was over the moon about an old TV he stumbled upon at the thrift store that he got for 5 bucks, and also taking apart and a few discarded VCRs that he negotiated for 10 bucks and is now harvesting parts from to make some new motorized invention in our basement.) I then went over to check on my father-in-law who lives with us since his stroke 2 years ago, and my spidey senses as a nurse and R.N. immediately were triggered. like only those of you who navigate life with a strong “sense” or intuition can resonate with. I knew something was not quite “right.” Nothing obvious, but just a knowing… I can’t explain it.
I said, “Hey dad, you have wild parties while I was gone? You look worn out by a pretty gal!” I was scanning him and could tell by his skin color and sound of his voice that things were not alright. “Oh, I’m okay,” he reassured me. He was sitting on the family room sofa like he always does, but I just felt something was amiss. I grabbed my equipment… stethoscope, blood pressure cuff and pretty much gave him an exam before I even moved my suitcase out of the entry way of our home. I’m known in my family to be a little bit of a healthcare bulldog. I checked his feet, pulses were sluggish and his blood pressure was 195/92 (and he’s on blood pressure meds), so I said, “Let’s go get you checked out.” My husband, Mike, loaded his dad in the car and I kissed him goodbye and promised Parker I’d be back home in a little while, I needed to get grandpa checked out. Off I went with my father-in-law to the ER.
He’s been hospitalized since Thursday night… turns out he was silently going into renal failure, and an infection in his feet and legs had just began to get brewing beneath the surface, due to a diabetic neuropathy. I’ve been at the hospital a lot since Thursday and he’s looking much better today, and back on the mend. We had the most interesting chat at his bedside this morning and I’m sure he laughs when he looks at me because I’m wearing my favorite Von Miller, Denver Broncos jersey and giving him a “pep talk” about visualizing himself strong, and walking tall and independent, and meeting hot retired women at the Longmont Senior Center and dancing again. But I do believe. I believe he can have these things because he’s not dead yet and he can take control of his health and “be” the guy he wants to be. We all have this power while we are alive. We CAN. That’s what I firmly believe.
We… all of us, we have these funny, crazy, full lives. We work, we play, we have families who need us, friends who need us, and in the end… we need us. We need to visualize ourselves as strong, capable, resilient, and filled with the vitality to create our own amazing, colorful lives. No, things are not always perfect, in fact, they are never perfect….but rather they are perfectly flawed. Sometimes we’re on-top and in the lead, and sometimes we are changing bed linens, dirty diapers, and putting another load in the washing machine.
That is real life.
We are learning in every moment. We can be what we want to be if we put in the effort to create it…and it starts with seeing ourselves in that way. Life doesn’t have to “look” like anything at all, but it needs to “feel” like we are living our moments and experiencing them. Sometimes the experience is in a hospital room and sometimes it’s at a global convention… or in the front row at an Elton John concert. 😉 …but it’s all just experiences. Nothing more, nothing less.
And by all means when you see me or anyone else sharing all the “wins” and good times, let’s celebrate together and uplift one another because we know that no one… no one on social media has it all together. Yes, I’m thrilled when I can top a list. Of course I am. Who wouldn’t be? And I’m thrilled when I’m at the bottom as I know how to dwell there too (very well), and every place in-between. I just enjoy doing a good job and being the best I can be for myself and everyone around me. I’d rather live my life to the fullest expression I can reach for, I know my time is limited here.
We all live complicated, sometimes messy existences, but the blessing is that in the midst of chaos there is a wealth of expression in our lives to shine a light and be the best that we can be in the moments we are given.
(((hugs))) to you… from my place in this circle of a REAL life, just living the best I know how in the moments God grants them to me. #Humbled #Grateful #Appreicative of every single one. <3 Sending you so much genuine love and a knowing wink to the life you negotiate every day. We are in this together. We really are. XOX!
“There are lies, damned lies and statistics.” – Mark Twain
Beyond the current disruption to bricks and mortar retail, the National Retail Federation’s (NRF) Big Show demonstrated the growing power of data. Not just any data, but big, dark, and unstructured data. Sexy, right?
It gets even better. You see we are doing things now we’ve never had access to doing before because now we have the accumulation, as well as, the technology to analyze and use data to position consumer experience as more personal and engaging. We all want to be special, and now Big Data reminds us that we are.
“Enjoy your big data, but please use responsibly.” ~Tamara McCleary
Yes, it’s powerful. It’s Big. And as powerful as “Big Data” is, it comes packed with a message of caution. The use of data, privacy, security, et al. is of utmost concern and top-of-mind for all of us. (Or should be.) The conundrum perplexing brands currently is the dichotomy proposed by consumers between “I want you to know and understand me” and “stop looking you perv!” Consumers want a personalized experience, however, they don’t want to feel violated or invaded by the method used to achieve this level of personalization.
Truth or dare? Do you want to be reminded that all of your movements are being tracked on your smartphone? However, do you demand that brands treat you like a special customer through the use of data to personalize your experience?
“Big Data, Personalization, UX, Security: We The People Want Our Cake & Eat it Too.” ~Tamara McCleary
Flag on the play: being reminded that I left a digital trail from my weekend trip to Las Vegas with the girls. (Oh dear! Remember that New Year’s resolution to decrease intake of alcohol units?).
Touchdown: push notification to my phone alerting me that my favorite designers shoes are on sale, or notified because I live in the Denver metro area, Broncos apparel is on-sale as we head to Super Bowl 50!
(*Note to find out more about this phenomenon, watch my video Big Data: Crazy, Sexy or Creepy presentation from IBM Amplify, or my video presentation to Appboy LTR entitled, Futurecast Beyond Mobile, Data & UX: The RelationShift Revolution.)
“Channel Customer” and The Eyes Have It!
Of course you’re not surprised to hear that Omni-channel was all the buzz at the Big Show, but honestly you have to embrace Omi-channel if you hope to be where your customer is, so it’s essentially “Channel Customer.” If you’re not a marketer, the idea behind and beyond Omni-channel marketing is bringing a unified experience to consumers no matter where they shop for products and services. This means customer eyeballs online, on their phones or in-store.
“Marketing is the newest agility sport in the 21st century.” ~Tamara McCleary
Success is being flexible and adaptable, which makes it’s Job #1 for the marketer to create a personalized customer experience paired with portability across all marketing and sales channels. (a.k.a. Where are my customer’s eye balls right now?) Yes, it’s a moving target, and we have to be keen to move around various platforms. This is true for not only B2C customers but B2B transactions as well. The phenomenal growth of Big Data analytics and Cognitive Computing is making all of this possible.
One example I observed from IBM Commerce was the use of IBM Watson Analytics in an eCommerce application (IBM Commerce Insights) for Carhartt. The cognitive computing capabilities of Watson allow workwear retailer Carhartt to adjust their eCommerce offerings across all their channels in real-time based on sales, physical inventory and a variety of other factors. Instantaneously businesses can see trends, where even a few years ago, sales, special offers and more would have taken weeks to collect and analyze the data to put a new campaign into action.
An additional advantage of the growth in Cognitive Computing is the ability for companies to begin collecting and analyzing data which have never been looked at before. According to IBM, almost 80% of the world’s data is unstructured, which means it is not collected or analyzed in any real form. Whether it be conversations across social networks, images, or geospatial data, cognitive computing can now look across the internet and generate actionable analysis. If that doesn’t get you hot-n-heavy with mind-blowing potential and opportunity, just wait till we geek-out on this next piece! Oodles of companies have vast stores of so-called “dark” data. Dark is delicious. Dark is good. Dark can be chocolate or data. And this slice of dark happens to represent all of the data collected by companies which is never used in analytics or sales. Imagine all the data! Data that can be fed into the cognitive computing process! This is a mind-expansion trip that is completely legal.
What does this translate into for business? A future of instantaneously actionable opportunities and an understanding of customers of which we have never known or been privy to before. The future goes beyond customization, personalization, user experience (UX), and for that matter even price discrimination. For consumers, business transactions and marketing offers will become even more personalized and hyper-localized, and through focus on the user’s experience and preferences, the digital touch of the future will feel more personal.
(In the desire for full disclosure, I attended the NRF Big Show on behalf of IBM, one of my clients.)
Neo: Why do my eyes hurt?
Morpheus: Because you’ve never used them before.
This is Part 1 in a series of observations from the NRF Big Show 2016.
Welcome to the 21st Century! Everything is changing. The skill-set imperative for companies to survive? Adaptability. Massive disruption is appearing in the retail industry in a manner not envisioned even a decade ago. Whether it be through the use of Big Data and Cognitive Computing, an Omni-Channel experience which merges all of a consumer’s experience into one, the dawn of robot attendants, the rise of 3D Printing and the decline in bricks and mortar, disruption in the retail space is here. The biggest question is what will shifts in retail look like over the next few years? I had an opportunity through my partnership as an IBM Futurist, and working with IBM Commerce #NewWayToEngage, to attend the National Retail Federation, (NRF), Big Show and catch a glimpse of not only the future, but the “now” we will begin to experience in 2016.
Omni-channel experiences for customers are radically transforming consumers expectations of retail. ~Tamara McCleary
Customers are omni-channel, so brands have no choice but to nuzzle into the embrace of all in order to be omnipresent. The prospect of an omni-channel experience for customers is beginning to radically transform consumers perspectives of retail. Not only do consumers expect a personalized experience, but they are beginning to expect it across all forms of engagement with a retailer; be it online, mobile or in-store. While the demise of brick and mortar stores is likely over-stated, it is notable that an increasing number of sales are moving online. At the NRF Big Show, Kevin Plank, CEO of Under Armour revealed that Under Armour is now seeing 12% of their sales coming from online sources.
You had me at… “The End of Laundry.”
With the growing ease of purchasing online and by mobile device, the effects on retail distribution through physical stores is unclear. Additional emerging technologies like 3D printing in the coming decade will also have a significant impact. Hershey’s demonstrated at the NRF Big Show, the ability to 3D print their flagship M&M brand candies.
My fellow futurist and friend, Bryan Eisenberg, CMO and Founder of IdealSpot brought up a forward-glancing idea, taking M&M’s as a starting point, and positing the consideration of 3D printed clothing, as well as, daily recycling of the soiled clothing into material to print new clothing, (and wait I haven’t gotten to the super sexy part)… thereby eliminating the need to do laundry! Bam! So hot I’m swooning! Seriously, as a business owner, consultant, international speaker, wife, and mother juggling more hats than the peddler in the children’s book, Caps For Sale, I was moist with excitement at the prospect of “The End of Laundry.”
Walk-in Closet For Rent!
Imagine a future in which you would no longer need to purchase clothing in a store but simply produce your wardrobe at-home. You can skip the wash cycle, and feel as environmentally friendly as a hippie in a hemp field by recycling what you have on your back to use as raw material for 3D printing new, sexy, fashion-forward vestments to sport every day. How would something even remotely close to this concept shift and shape retailers and industry in the coming years?
What’s IBM’s Watson got to do with it?
IBM demonstrated a variety of new technologies, most of which were based on Watson. Watson’s cognitive computing abilities allow it to look at vast amounts of data, much of which is unstructured and currently unused across the internet (approximately 80% of data is this unstructured type according to IBM), allowing for companies to understand their customers in profound new ways.
Nadia & Nao at your service.
Through omni-channel personalization, customers have an opportunity to experience a retail transaction where no matter how they interact through a retailer, they will feel as if their needs and preferences are known, perhaps before they even know what they need themselves. Imagine a future where kiosks and robotic attendants (like IBM’s Nadia and Nao) serve you in various retail establishments. The shift away from human employees will be dramatic, however, the introduction of an omnichannel experience driven by cognitive systems like Watson will carry your preferences with you wherever and whenever you choose to interact with a company.
“It is not the strongest or the most intelligent who will survive, but those who can best manage change.” ~ Leon C. Megginson
One of my greatest takeaways from this year’s NRF Big Show was the exciting possibilities for all companies, large and small, startup or legacy retailer, to compete and offer compelling experiences for consumers. By being nimble and leveraging data, cognitive analytics and a desire to create genuine relationships with customers, the coming decade is bright for retailers and consumers alike.
(In the desire for full disclosure, I attended the NRF Big Show on behalf of IBM, one of my clients.)