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Ex-Wired Editor: 'Whoever Has the Smartest Customers Wins'

Bookish wisdom.

Josh Gordon By Josh Gordon
07/02/2008 -13:43 PM

Kevin Kelly, editor of Wired magazine in its early and truly great years, wrote a book with a chapter I highly recommend to everyone in media. It's called, "Relationship Tech, Start With Technology End With Trust."

Kelly, being a "content should be free" Internet kind of guy, has posted the entire contents of this book for free on the Web. I recommend reading it. So many of the issues we face in media are touched by his vision.

The next time you have a dialogue with a client, consider this from Kelly's book:

"Expertise now resides in fanatical customers. The world’s best experts on your product or service don’t work for your company. They are your customers, or a hobby tribe."

"Companies need user groups almost as much as users need them. User groups are better than advertising when customers are happy and worse than cancer when they are not. Used properly, aficionados can make or break products."

Good products and services are cocreated: The desires of customers grow out of what is possible, and what is possible is made real by companies following new customer desires. Because creation in a network is a cocreation, a prosumptive act, a multifaceted relationship must exist between the cocreators.

"Whoever has the smartest customers wins."

Read all of Chapter 9 here ...

Read the entire book, free, here ...


Josh Gordon By Josh Gordon -- Josh Gordon is president of Smarter Media where he works with publishers to maximize their online and print revenue through training, consulting, and representation.

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