"Empathy Cannot Be Automated" by Jenn Downs. A Presentation at Web Design Day, 2013 - Pittsburgh, PA
Working at MailChimp I've seen thousands of interactions between companies and their customers. I've seen the conflict between marketing and design when trying to automate the relationship between company and customer. Automation is a powerful tool that bosses are starting to demand we use, but used incorrectly automation can reduce empathy for the customer or email subscriber.
Using technology to manage relationships isn't a replacement for human to human contact. You still have to talk to people and you still have to treat them with respect and dignity. No person should be reduced to just a number, a twitter handle, a "targeted segment", or a blip on a chart.
Let's explore how to let the automation guide you, give you data, feed you information, but use it to be more relevant, more human and more empathetic.