meHawaiiThe following is a guest post from Forrest Knighton, Senior Director of Account Mgmt and support  for mobileStorm.

Wouldn\’t it be cool to have a half human car? You know, it could sense what kind of mood you\’re in as soon as you got in and fastened your seatbelt; it would instinctively know what kind of music to put on the radio, know which route to your destination you\’d want to take- the scenic or the efficient one.  It would be able to tell what exact temperature you\’d like the cockpit to be without you having to adjust the controls.   Sweet, huh?   Maybe someday in the future that will be a reality but for now you have to select your own music, decide what streets you want to take and manually adjust the climate control.

But there is a type of machine out there that is half human, blending bleeding edge technology with real live human emotion, decision making, thought processes, and actions: The Marketing Machine. Sure, a  platform like mobileStorm gives you all the tools you need to send SMS and email campaigns to your audience, but adding the Human Element a.k.a Customer Service/Dedicated Account Management can help make your marketing efforts more effective, help guide you in making better decisions,   give you insight into your core audience, inform you what type of messaging medium will be most effective for your product, and even let you know what time of day you should send which type of message.  That\’s what the Human Element can give you – empathy, compassion, insight, instinct and real world firsthand knowledge.  Machines are cold, impersonal, and generally quite stupid because they can only do exactly what you tell them to do based on information that a human had to create in the first place.  There\’s a difference between Information and Wisdom and computers and machines have the former not the latter.

Go ask your Constant Contact account (yes, the actual control panel interface) what the expected retention rate for a highly incentivized re-confirmation email campaign to 5000 six-month old dormant email addresses will be.  Let me save you some time and embarrassment\”¦ the machine itself, the control panel,  can\’t tell you squat.  Ask the same question to a mobileStorm Dedicated Account Manager and they\’ll provide you with a number range based on real life experience while factoring in your audience, offer, weather, and current political climate.  That\’s valuable stuff!   Here\’s an example albeit a colorful, strange, not super realistic, dark humored example:

You\’re sending an SMS text campaign to a targeted portion of your audience in Norman, Oklahoma.  Like most ESPs\’ functionality you could set the message up weeks in advance, timing the offer perfectly with the opening of your new restaurant.  You\’d like to text a Dinner Special offer for a free dessert called a Raspberry Twister.  Sounds yummy and who can pass up a free dessert, right?   So you create the campaign, set it and forget it.  If a F3 tornado touched down in Norman (God forbid) and left a swath of destruction 5 miles long the day before your SMS text was set to send out would your control panel, your user interface, alert you that you might want to reconsider sending that particular text message? Or perhaps remove the dessert\’s name from the text?    At the very least change the name of the dessert? Would it know that this situation is the epitome of \”too soon\”?

Now, I have an overactive imagination sometimes and that example wasn\’t meant to disparage Oklahoma (Go Sooners!) in any way but you get my point.  If you had a mobileStorm Dedicated Account Manager, who can constantly interface with you, update you on your marketing campaign results, make adjustments on the fly for you, and who, by virtue of simply being human, has empathy, compassion and knowledge that only a human could have, then you can improve the ‘machine\’ with real human emotion and wisdom.  Machines have knowledge (because we program that into them) but they don\’t have Wisdom, that\’s exclusively human. At least for now anyway.