Discover the Conversational Economy

The Conversational Economy series will explore the trends in business and technology that are taking us back to a relationship-based economy, where customers are treated as individuals, and where businesses no longer need to guess as to what their customers want.

Commerce Rebooted

Commerce used to be personal. We used to have close relationships with the businesses we patronized. They used to treat us like human beings. The “market” was really a function of the conversations comprising it, and as such, these “conversations of value” represented the center of the customer relationship. Without conversation, there was no market. So what happened?

With the rise of mass-marketing and mass-retail, the personal, relationship aspect of business waned. It survived almost entirely in the extremely high-end, out of reach for most consumers. What most of us got was advertising and big-box merchandising, not personal service.

Customers Are the Heart of Commerce

In this first installment of our new Conversational Economy series, I take a look at the convergence of two major trends: the rising power of the customer and the importance of the customer experience, and the preeminence of messaging as the dominant user-interface metaphor for mobile.

We explore the concept of the “one-to-one future” of marketing and customer relationship management pioneered by Don Peppers and Martha Rogers, and connect their 1993 predictions to the current reality of the mobile era.

Rich messaging, as the preferred user interface for mobile, forms the anchor for a new kind of customer relationship. One that companies like Trunk Club and Staples are leading the way with, and one that will become table stakes for businesses moving forward.

You can read the first installment on Medium here