Author: Debra Zahay-Blatz

Debra Zahay-Blatz

In addition to her professorship at Northern Illinois Unviersity, Dr. Zahay-Blatz has been the President of her own database and relationship management consulting firm since 1993 and has extensive experience helping companies identify and develop customer relationships and design, implement and measure their digital strateiges. Her prior business experience includes senior marketing management responsibilities at MCI Telecommunications and Dun & Bradstreet. She has also served as a Vice President on the Executive Board of the Chicago American Marketing Association and currently serves on the Board of the Chicago Association of Direct Marketing, the editorial board of the Journal of Database Marketing and Custmer Strategey and is Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Research in Interactive Marketing.  Dr. Zahay-Blatz has recently co-authored the third edition of a text on Internet Marketing MaryLou Roberts entitled:  Internet Marketing, Integrating Online and Offline Strategies.

The three steps to 'shareability,' sharing customer information within the firm

Multichannel marketing means being able to deploy not only campaigns but content across channels in an integrated fashion.

It is recognized that to communicate effectively across channels, customer information must be also shared effectively within the organization.  

Data sharing was the a topic at's recent Big Data Roundtable in London in February. What is less well-known and understood is how to get to a shared data repository as an organization.  

This blog post discusses my research results on data sharing. For more on the topic, Econsultancy has a great report on how to achieve shared data in a corporation.


Why doesn’t everyone do Big Data?

There was a lively discussion at Digital Cream in Chicago on October 24 during the multichannel session about why EVERYONE doesn’t leap on bandwagon and develop a customer database that can be used meaningfully for lead nurturing, customer acquisition and retention. 

One of the participants at Digital Cream noted that businesses invest where they can get a return for their dollar and those businesses making these investments in a customer database must see the returns.  However large the benefits of customer information systems (CIS), it is true that other factors contribute to profitability.  

For example, depending on how good your company is at New Product Development (NPD), 25 to 49% of company profits typically come from new product development efforts.  Winning new products typically pay off very quickly and their average ROI is over 96%.  So a CIS project, with its long development and implementation cycle, must compete for company resources and attention.