Are Free Customers Better Than Captive Ones?
It is standard in business to talk about "acquiring," "capturing," "locking in," "owning" and "managing" customers as if they were slaves or cattle.In the Internet Age, shouldn’t we be free to set our own terms, control our own data, and even state the prices we are ready to pay—outside of any company's silo? And haven't free customers been a promise of free market as well as the Internet from the start?Doc Searls says yes. Doc co-authored The Cluetrain Manifisto, and his new book, The Intention Economy: When Customers Take Charge — due out in May 2012 from Harvard Business Review Press. He has also been working since 2006 with developers on tools for customer liberation, through ProjectVRM at Harvard's Berkman Center for Internet & Society.Some of those tools are now coming to market. But will they prove out? In "Are Free Customers Better Than Captive Ones?" Doc tackles that question and invites many more. Bring your own to what will prove to be a highly interactive session.
Doc Searls is co-author of The Cluetrain Manifesto, a business classic,
and author of The Intention Economy: When Customers Take Charge, due out in May from Harvard Business Review Press. He is also Senior Editor of Linux Journal, a fellow at the Center for Information Technology & Society at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and an alumnus fellow at Harvard's Berkman Center for Internet & Society, where he runs ProjectVRM, which coordinates development of tools for customer independence.