“Social” is a bubble. Trust me on this. I urge all consultants on “social ______” (fill in the blank) to make hay while the sun shines. ... Meanwhile, here’s the challenge: make the Net personal. Make relationships personal. Equip individuals with tools of independence and engagement. ...
One more thing, and this is personal too. I am not anybody’s “capital”. You or your company may call me an “asset” or think you have “acquired” me, or “own” me as a customer. But I am and wish to remain a free, sovereign and independent agent of my own soul. ... Free customers are more valuable than captive ones. That’s the point of VRM. Proving it is our challenge.
A truly loyal customer will send you referrals long after they quit being a customer, provided you have made them feel free. Right now Micro Center and Hewlett Packard have spent 60 days implementing an insured repair on my son's laptop computer. I never want to be chained to them again. In our rush to become social, we run the danger of forgetting that we need to maintain one-to-one respect for each customer. Doc Searls, frequently credited with writing the line "markets are conversations," riffs powerfully on this topic. VRM stands for Vendor Relationship Management, which he hopes will replace "customer relationship management" one day.
Project VRM: VRM is personal. 2008-Nov-20, by Doc Searls: