Are You Talking to Me?

Patricia Lipari
AMA | Rochester Secretary

AMA | Rochester kicked off our events calendar with “Are You Talking to Me?” from Xerox CMO, Christa Carone.  With over 140 people in attendance, the group listened as Christa shared her thoughts on engaging with customers in the most relevant way. Now that technology has leveled the playing field for marketers, we need to take marketing communications to the next level with real-time, personalized conversations.

In sharing the example of the 1950s corner grocery store, Christa pointed out that even in this digital age, consumers still want to have a personal relationship with brands. They still want to experience the personal greeting from the store owner and the friendly conversation during check-out.  But what’s the modern day answer to this experience? How do we make sure that we use technology to create and enhance the experience, without simply becoming a substitute for the experience?

Brands like Span Air have figured this out. They delivered a surprise to a plane-load of customers on Christmas Eve for an experience they’ll never forget. The video went viral, generating 700K views in a two week period.

Maybelline also seems to have gotten it right with their B-to-Me campaign in which women answered a few questions online and then were sent make-up tips and coupons tailored for them personally. This program, which relied on Xerox technology, delivered results 20X better than traditional campaigns.

Christa’s presentation also covered a topic a little closer to home when she detailed their approach for the Xerox Rochester International Jazz Festival and provided several examples of personalized interactive experiences that the team delivered for participants. Get your personalized Find Your Jazz video here.

The key takeaways that I had from today’s presentation were: the experience is as important as the technology, we need to commit to learning more about our customers and we need to use this information to create authentic, believable messages for them.

Are you looking for more information on the topics that Christa touched on?  A quick search of, the AMA website, found 94 results on the term “personalization,” 744 for “conversation” and over 1300 for “engagement,” including articles, podcasts, white papers and more. All available exclusively to AMA members.

If you aren’t already a member of AMA | Rochester, check out member benefits. Next week there will be $50 off membership promotion starting.

Upcoming events

The next event we have planned is The Digital Peep Show being held on October 17th.  The roundtable format gives us the opportunity to discuss with ten local experts what’s next in the world of interactive marketing. Find out more about The Digital Peep Show.

On November 14th we’ll hear from Butler Till Media, Helendale Dermatology & Medical Spa and United Way at our Marketer of the Year Winners event. Learn more about their unique business situations and the results they’ve achieved with their marketing programs.  Learn more about the Marketer of the Year Winners event.