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    Dan's Blog: Why do businesses "flock" to trendy technology, even when it doesn't meet their needs?

     On a recent trip to England, a group of us took a hike up a hill past a flock of sheep.  Sheep are so charming:  pleasant to see on the side of a hill, not terribly wild or boisterous, and very compliant when it is time to get their wool sheared.  At one point, the farmer pulled up to a corner of the very large field the sheep were occupying and they started bleating and running toward the truck.  They clearly were trained that this was feeding time, and responded with the enthusiasm of my 19-year-old son under similar circumstances.  This was, without meaning to sound too stick with me example of when it's a good idea to follow the flock.  However, we all know that sheep are, in fact, too compliant for their own good, and can walk willingly to be slaughtered.  That' …

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    European Advantage Users Group meets in London


    The 2015 European Advantage User Group meeting was held 15 April at the conveniently located London Paddington Hilton.  Attending were 33 clients representing 12 companies from England, France, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Belgium and Portugal.  AdvantageCS was itself “multi-national,” with staff from England and France as well as the United States.

    Dan Heffernan, VP of Sales and Product Direction, led the day and kicked it off with an overview presentation of AdvantageCS news and the roadmap looking ahead.  He highlighted our three newest clients, including Talentum from Finland, who had three representatives at the conference.

    One (of many) entertaining images that Dan showed in his Prezi presentation was a pair of blue jeans, indicating a recent dress code change at the AdvantageCS …

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    Preview of Advantage Features Coming This Summer

    There are some exciting new features coming your way this summer in Advantage. Here are just a few--contact your Advantage account manager for more information.

    Streamlined Customer Information Maintenance: Customer and address maintenance via the SVCCTM view and Customer Lookup dialog has been significantly enhanced. Replacing the static, tabbed entry dialog is an approach using Advantage scripts. You can reduce the entry fields to just those required for your business---as well as take advantage of other script entry features such as open/close/require, user-definable field captions, and customizable presentation.

    ARPCAR Reorganization: The ARPCAR view has been changed from a list frame of credits and debits that satisfy your search criteria to top-pane list frame and bottom-pane …

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    Dan's Blog: The Gift of Criticism

    Recently, my wife needed to go back to a doctor's office where she'd had some minor surgery done some months earlier.  She was in pain and was concerned about infection.  She called the office to find out when they could see her but was met with the proverbial "please leave a message" announcement, rather than being answered by a human.  Instead of leaving a message and sitting by the phone for the rest of the morning, she decided to drive to the office and see them face-to-face and ask in person for a last-minute appointment.  I decided to join her so we could chat on the way.

    When we walked into the office, I knew we were going to have a less-than-pleasant customer service experience.  It was written all over the face of the receptionist.  She was cool, aloof, and lacking in compassion. …

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    Continuity Programs in Advantage

    Did you know that Advantage offers continuity programs for your books and products? A continuity series allows customers to purchase a set of related products that are released to them sequentially over a period of time.  Continuity programs give you the opportunity to periodically remind customers of your brand; the customer gets more exposure to your content and they get to “belong” to a club.  Throw in some premiums and it’s a recipe for happy, loyal customers.

    You can set up a continuity program using the Book Club functionality or the Standing Order program.

    Here’s how Book Club works. Customers join a club (they become members) by responding to your offers to join, or you can select people and automatically add them.  Alternatively, you directly add them as part of an order (for …

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    Dan's Blog: Invite Us Over for Dinner and We'll Look at Your Leaky Faucet


    How many of us have ever dreamed of having a chiropractor in the family?  Or a carpenter?  Or a mechanic?  As it turns out that neither my wife nor I are any of these things, I have often mused at how nice it would be if one of our offspring would fall in love with such a person.  I can just imagine inviting the kids over for dinner and just mentioning a drippy faucet we have in a sink upstairs to the now-fed plumber and hearing those magical words, "Why don't I go and have a look?"

    Perhaps others of us wish we had a computer expert in the family.  Most of my colleagues with aging parents become the de facto helpdesk for their parents' computer issues.  When I go visit my father and watch him at his computer, I am sometimes amazed at the habits humans form which cause us to do …

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    Sunny Florida Site of 2015 AUG Conference

    Have you registered yet for the 2015 Advantage User Group conference (February 11-13 in Lake Buena Vista)?  Based on years of feedback from attendees, it’s pretty much a given that you’ll come away with valuable ideas you can implement in your company and new or renewed friendships with your peers from publishing companies around the world.

    This year’s focus is on optimizing your use of Advantage and adjusting to a rapidly changing environment.  The agenda is action-packed with presentations, panel discussions and roundtables full of useful information and interesting viewpoints. And there will be ample opportunity to relax and socialize with your fellow Advantage users.

    Dates: February 11-13, 2015

    Location: Holiday Inn – Lake Buena Vista,  1805 Hotel Plaza Blvd.,  Lake Buena Vista, …

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    Aller Media Sweden Goes Live on Advantage

    Abstract: Aller Media’s Swedish operations—located in Helsingborg--recently went live on Advantage, the second country to go live, following the Danish cutover in May.

    Aller Media’s Swedish operations—located in Helsingborg--recently went live on Advantage, the second country to go live, following the Danish cutover in May. The remaining countries, Finland and Norway, are soon to follow.  Aller Media is the leading publisher of weekly magazines in the Nordic countries with a weekly circulation of approximately 2.7 million issues.  

    The core Aller team consisted of Lena Nyqvist as the project manager, Anders Myrén as the integrations lead, Marcus Eberhagen as the test lead, Diana Tegnér and Joanna Wieckowska as the fulfillment leads, Madleine Victor as the finance lead, Lotta Björling as the marketing lead, Annelie Andersson as the distribution lead, Charlotte Andersson and Emma Petrisson as the customer service leads, and Tommy Hansen as the lead …

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    AdvantageCS Welcomes Talentum

    AdvantageCS is pleased to announce our newest client: Talentum.  Talentum is a B to B publisher based in Helsinki, Finland.  Their history goes back to the year 1938 and the establishment of the financial journal Talouselämä. Talentum provides media, professional literature and online and information services for professionals whose interests include technology, finance, management, health care, advertising and law. Additionally, Talentum implements training courses for these target groups and organizes events of various types. Its key products are magazines, books, online services, training and events. 

    Talentum operates in Finland, Sweden, Denmark, Baltic countries, and Russia. In the Nordic countries, Talentum has a total of some 1.1 million readers of journals and magazines and …

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    Dan's Blog: Subscriptions eCommerce

    Back in the late 1990s, companies wanted to create their own websites with their own ideas about how the site would be structured, the user experience, and the branding.  When we introduced our API to our clients in 1999, we would typically provide some training and documentation to their web team and they would go away happily integrating their website with Advantage using the API.  Time marched on and the API became bigger and more comprehensive. 

    Then in the last couple of years we noticed a trend among our prospects and clients.  Companies were no longer content to take on an API with over 5,000 methods, which ours has.  They wanted a platform which was already integrated with Advantage through the API.  The platform would have built-in eCommerce functions, self-service capabilities, …

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