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May 03, 2004


Betsy Markum

I can't believe it, my co-worker just bought a car for $45474. Isn't that crazy!

Robert  Paterson

Great post Jennifer. Who feels good about being "owned"?

I wonder if THE business of the future is facilitating the right choice that suits the person? Imagine the financial institution that only found what you need. The University that helped you find what you wanted to do and so on.

Peter Caputa

amen! I was having this conversation with one of my partners the other day. in web-designer world, we call it lock in: trying to create a site where the user doesn't have to leave.

Our specific argument was whether to include a message box functionality in our event promotion/social networking site...or to simply route messages between users to people's email inboxes and IM clients.

From a user's perspective it is simpler to route the message. This way they don't have to go to the site from their email, login and then read it. Instead, they can respond directly from their normal email client or IM client. However, we lose an opportunity to serve an ad to them.

My argument was that people would prefer to use the communication tools they have instead of another inbox. They'll use our service as opposed to another one that forces them to take that extra step and visit the site.

AOL is the king of lock-in. Yahoo isn't much better. But google isn't concerned with locking in customers. They are concerned only with creating products that are the best. Then, customers will come.

I think this is the way forward.

Michele Miller

Jennifer, great post. I commented on the OurHouse blog, but wanted to do so here as well. I am very much in agreement with you. Management guru Peter Drucker says that the purpose of a business is to "create a customer." Create... almost as if giving birth. Which means the business owner has a tremendous responsibility in the care and feeding of that customer. Respect and affection are certainly a big part of that!

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