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Peter Fader

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Wednesday, April 12, 2017 - 12:19pm

For 30 plus years now, I've been spreading the "customer centricity" gospel to anyone who will listen. While most companies mistake the concept for a friendly philosophy about the importance of being "nice" to every customer, it's quite the contrary.

A truly customer centric company is one that aligns its products and services around the wants and needs of its most valuable customers. In other words, it's about using customer lifetime value (CLV) metrics to identify the ones who are likely to continue to spend money with you for a long time ahead, and finding more like them.

Naturally, I get calls from all sorts of curious companies desperate to increase the future profitability of their top customers. Gaming companies, pharmaceutical firms, hotel chains, telcos... you name it. They are making great strides to use CLV to become more customer-centric.

But retailers? All I hear are crickets.

Peter Fader, professor of marketing, Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and co-founder of Zodiac.