We have much better customer service than we used to. Some people say, “Sure, we’re doing CRM because we have friendlier telephone operators.” I call that random-access CRM. No matter how great the service is, it doesn’t matter if the company doesn’t remember the customer.
We call that the “goldfish principle,” after Dory, the goldfish, in Finding Nemo. She’s lovely, but she can’t remember a thing two minutes after it happened. In the book, we use the example of our friend who stayed at a hotel in Atlanta. When he asked for a wake-up call, the clerk offered him complimentary coffee and a copy of the Journal-Constitution. He requested tea and The Wall Street Journal instead, and those arrived the next morning. But the next evening, when he asked for his wake-up call, the clerk again offered him coffee and the Journal. We see so many companies demonstrating the goldfish principle; they offer better service, but it’s not a relationship.