Sociologists will still be arguing into the next century about why invasive and assertive advertising worked, for a while at least, in the late twentieth century, but things have definitely changed. Websites, social media, mobile, and all of the digital technologies that are rapidly integrating deeper into our lives point to one central thing—consumers have choice.

Consumers aren’t beholden to their television sets, or magazines, or radio to find out what product to buy and with whom to do business. Choice surrounds them every second of every day. The barriers to finding and engaging with competitors have been destroyed by the ease of clicking a mouse button or tapping on a screen, which makes what this book talks about even more important.

The choice that consumers have today reflects another important change—businesses can’t compete solely on product anymore. Technology enables competitors to spring up overnight. To consumers, product features are all the same.

Thankfully, all this change has left one aspect of the business world untouched, the one aspect that, we’ll argue, is the crux of creating a truly successful, memorable organization that people want to love. To share. To recommend.


The problem, though, is that digital makes forming, cultivating, and taking advantage of relationships difficult.

The concepts, arguments, and examples that follow will help you understand the fundamental components of relationships—what makes them good; what makes ...

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