The Dark Side of So-Called Customer Relationships

Jonathan Kranz is the principal of Kranz Communications and author of Writing Copy for Dummies (recommended by yours truly, whether you’re a novice or pro). Last week Jonathan wrote an excellent piece entitled “Teaching Our Customers to Hate Us” at MarketingProfs Daily Fix.

A few excerpts:

“As a pretext for sending me overwhelming amounts of unsolicited email, marketers tell me (in the fine print) that I’m receiving this cascade of irrelevant and irritating material because we have some kind of ‘relationship,’” Jonathan wrote.

“Often, I cannot recall what that ‘relationship’ is …”

Yes, “relationship” has been a business and marketing buzzword since the late 20th century. As a marketing type, I bought into it long ago. But Jonathan’s post was like a splash of cold water. This “relationship” talk is often a big marketing lie.

“Real relationships take time,” Jonathan concluded. “Just because someone thanks you for holding the door open doesn’t mean you’re invited to pack your toothbrush and spend the night. As marketers, we need to be prudent.”


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