By Chris Behrens, President and CEO
What a great day! Our second annual Ignite conference may have been even better than the first, and that’s really saying something. With a theme of Protecting Trust in Today’s Consumer Journey, we gathered together to examine the concept of trust by way of research from some of today’s top scholars on the subject, as well as companies with real-world experience on how trust impacts their business.
Each session paired a business scholar with a top business practitioner, which allowed attendees to see both sides of hot issues like using new tools to shape the customer experience, using the right metrics and analytics, how marketers can participate in the conversation and the value and practice of integrated marketing.
Transparency in action
One of the things that impressed me most was the level of transparency from all the scholars and business representatives who spoke at the event. Perhaps that was nowhere more evident than in the keynote presentation by Jamie Moldafsky, Chief Marketing Officer at Wells Fargo. She gave an insightful and informative presentation on the journey her organization has been through following the account fraud scandal in their organization.
She detailed key steps her marketing team had made throughout an arduous two-year journey toward the recovery of trust. Along the way, she shared examples of television advertising and print media that supported Wells Fargo’s evolving message.
One of my key takeaways from her presentation was the importance of understanding that you can’t just say “I’m sorry” after events of that magnitude. You need to say it over and over, in different ways, and, most importantly, you have to not only make changes, but ensure it’s clear to all your audiences what those changes are. Finally, Jamie talked about the importance of anticipating what might happen in terms of a crisis, but also about being willing to be flexible when an issue you never anticipated hits you out of the blue.
Learning and networking
When I first approached Wells Fargo’s Executive Vice President of Corporate Philanthropy and Community Relations, Jon Campbell, about a presentation to Ignite that centered on the topic of trust, he told me quite honestly, “We have some experience with this.” I told John this would be an opportunity for Wells Fargo to present its story to the audience of academics, business people, news makers and influencers, and for us all to learn more from their experiences.
Jamie told their story in such a compelling way. Those of us who were fortunate enough to hear her speak have gained a greater understanding of all the “behind the scenes” work necessary to begin making a recovery from a stumble this one.
We’re grateful to her, and to all the exemplary Ignite presenters, for an extraordinary day of learning and networking. We all left the Carlson School campus that day with “use-it-today” practical information. In addition, I know that academics and business practitioners alike appreciated an opportunity to forge an even stronger bond between the University of Minnesota and the downtown business community.
See you next year
The Ignite planning team is already looking ahead to possible topics and speakers for next year. If you have a suggestion, please share it. We’re looking forward to hearing your thoughts. Email us at email@example.com OR post a comment below with your ideas!
If you’d like to learn more about how YA can use our considerable marketing and tech savvy to turn even first-time customers into loyal brand advocates who take action, buy more and spread the word, please post a comment to begin the conversation.
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