My first month at Bazaarvoice is in the books. And given the timing of my start, I had the opportunity to meet the entire company last week at our ten-year anniversary party and Global All-Hands meeting. Here’s what I’ve learned so far:

  1. Bazaarvoice has the most passionate, energetic, and enthusiastic employees I have ever worked with. And I’ve worked at some pretty great places.
  2. The direction the company is heading is exciting and a little uncharted, so we’re all learning and experimenting together (including some of our clients). Experiment—iterate—repeat. We don’t have all the answers, but we are doing the right things to get them—and including some of our clients in that journey. And it’s FUN. Even though Bazaarvoice has been around ten years, we are on the frontier of a brave new world in using consumer shopping behavior data.
  3. We have amazing clients who are doing incredible things to harness the power of consumer-generated content. I am blown away by some of the innovation that is coming from our customer base. To that end, we had the honor of having a key client’s head of digital strategy, talk to all 825 Bazaarvoice employees about the strength of our partnership and the impact that consumer-generated content is having on their business. Inspiring.
  4. We are more than a ratings and reviews company. The breadth and depth of our current solutions (and what will be announced at our Summit event next week) allow our customers to use Consumer-Generated Content (CGC) to drive better search results, better click-through, better conversion, and a better buying experience. There are other providers of ratings and reviews software out there, but nobody offers the portfolio of CGC solutions that we do. NOBODY.
  5. We have great partnerships with some of the most influential thought leaders in the brand and retail space. David Bell from the Wharton School presented to a group of Bazaarvoice leaders some fascinating work he’s doing to understand the data behind the interactions between online and offline shopping and how consumers are operating in both worlds. We also had two marketing agency chiefs share their thoughts on the role CGC plays in a brand or retailer’s overall content strategy. Spoiler alert: It’s really critical.
  6. The potential within our brand and retailer network to drive more customer engagement is unlimited. Old joke: How much is one fax machine worth. Answer? Zero. How much are 50 fax machines worth? Answer? Infinity. I realize I am dating myself with the fax machine analogy, but you get the point. A network derives value from its constituent members. The power of the Bazaarvoice network to syndicate CGC across hundreds of retailers and thousands of brands is simply staggering. And with 700 million shopper visits per month to our network, no one knows more about the impact of CGC than Bazaarvoice.

AND THE MOST IMPORTANT THING I HAVE LEARNED SO FAR? …

7. There are a hundred shades of Bazaarvoice green. You’d think it would bother me, as the CMO, seeing so much variety and “off-brand” liberty, but in fact, the particular Pantone shade of Bazaarvoice green is somewhat hard to find in clothing, so I’m cutting everybody some slack on the green wardrobe. Believe me when I tell you that on Fridays here it is a complete “greenout.” And I can live with that..

I’m looking forward to meeting customers and partners in NOLA next week at the Bazaarvoice Summit!!!