Customer Is a Dirty Word

Jeff Bezos just called me a name!

I am not a customer. I am not a user. I might be a client. I might be a member. I may even be a loyalist. But don’t call me a customer. “Customer” is a dirty word.

Jeff Bezos Called Me a Name!

I saw that graphic above when I logged into my Amazon account, my “I use it pretty much every day for one thing or another” Amazon account, my “don’t you see my name ALL OVER THE FRICKEN SCREEN????” account. Jeff Bezos called me a “customer.” In that really great letter where he spends my time telling me all about how awesome he is, Bezos calls me a customer. Nothing more. A cheap number. Not a loyalist. Not someone who buys quite often from one part of the Amazon empire or another. Just. A. Customer.

Words Matter

For instance, when you send out email marketing, never let the default be “colleague” for when it doesn’t know my name for sure. Make it anything but that. “Colleague” is right up there with “comrade” and the like.

I’m not even fond of “users.” At Kitchen Table Companies, we have members. We have advisors. We don’t have users. I can bend on this one a bit. I’m a user of Evernote, for instance. But am I? Or am I a very satisfied fan and supporter of Evernote? Wouldn’t you rather a “supporter” than a “user?”

Who Do You Want In Your Corner?

I want Jeff Bezos to take it back. I want him to call me his very cherished and appreciated community member. I want him to think of me as a supporter. Something. Anything.

Who do you want in your corner, as a business owner? Do you want customers? I don’t.

What do YOU want to be to the places you buy from? Customers?

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