Group Hug Events
Customers and partners wanna FEEL the love. It's no longer enough to give your customers and partners a discount, some cool gear, a handshake, and then send them packin'. They want to know, especially in these uncertain times, that the company with whom they are doing business values them as a customer/partner - and even a friend. Customers and vendors (and this analogy also applies to VARs and vendors) have become something akin to dance partners. For example, a vendor might promise to provide high-quality, leading-edge equipment, good pricing, good support (design, install, configuration, etc.), and even some good old face-to-face training. A customer might, in return, promise to provide long-term commitment to the vendor, product feedback, and even case studies and a reference as needed. It's a two-way street, a relationship, a marriage of sorts. What does this get the vendor? Loyalty.