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The Intention Economy: When Customers Take Charge

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Overview


Caveat venditor?let the seller beware

While marketers look for more ways to get personal with customers, including new tricks with ?big data,? customers are about to get personal in their own ways, with their own tools. Soon consumers will be able to:

? Control the flow and use of personal data
? Build their own loyalty programs
? Dictate their own terms of service
? Tell whole markets what they want, how they want it, where and when they ...

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The Intention Economy: When Customers Take Charge

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Overview


Caveat venditor—let the seller beware

While marketers look for more ways to get personal with customers, including new tricks with “big data,” customers are about to get personal in their own ways, with their own tools. Soon consumers will be able to:

• Control the flow and use of personal data
• Build their own loyalty programs
• Dictate their own terms of service
• Tell whole markets what they want, how they want it, where and when they should be able to get it, and how much it should cost

And they will do all of this outside of any one vendor’s silo.

This new landscape we’re entering is what Doc Searls calls The Intention Economy—one in which demand will drive supply far more directly, efficiently, and compellingly than ever before. In this book he describes an economy driven by consumer intent, where vendors must respond to the actual intentions of customers instead of vying for the attention of many.

New customer tools will provide the engine, with VRM (Vendor Relationship Management) providing the consumer counterpart to vendors’ CRM (Customer Relationship Management) systems. For example, imagine being able to change your address once for every company you deal with, or combining services from multiple companies in real time, in your own ways—all while keeping an auditable accounting of every one of your interactions in the marketplace. These tantalizing possibilities and many others are introduced in this book.

As customers become more independent and powerful, and the Intention Economy emerges, only vendors and organizations that are ready for the change will survive, and thrive. Where do you stand?

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

Named a Best Business Book for 2012 in strategy+business magazine

“a must-read book…” — TechCrunch

“Doc Searls has written a very thoughtful book on the intention economy and the promises it holds for both vendors and customers.” — Forbes

“Searls’s vision raises provocative questions for companies and for marketers.” — strategy+business magazine magazine

“This is a thoughtful, well researched book with a compelling thesis and call to action for marketers.” — Decision

“a brilliant piece on free markets and the Internet” — Linux Journal

“Do yourself a favor. Read The Intention Economy by @dsearls. It’s a very quick study in what VRM means for both brands and consumers.” — Business 2 Community (business2community.com)

“The fine distinction between consumer and customer is at the heart of this insightful look at how some companies, like Trader Joe's, are moving in the direction of the "intention economy," where the desires and needs of individual customers primarily determine what the vendors offer.” — Fort Worth Star Telegram

“it’s fun, insightful reading for anyone interested in becoming “self-actualized, liberated customers.” — SocialMedia.biz

“Finally a thoughtful, hype free book worth reading about digital marketing, the relationships we have with vendors, and a vision for a better future where we have greater control of our personal data.” — ZDNet

ADVANCE PRAISE for The Intention Economy:

JP Rangaswami, Chief Scientist, salesforce.com—
“‘Consumers have a right to exercise control over what personal data companies collect from them and how they use it.’ That’s the way the draft of the US Government’s planned Privacy Bill of Rights begins. If you want to understand what this really means, then Doc’s book is the place to start. In fact, if you want to understand anything about what’s really happening with customers, this book is for you. An excellent read.”

Seth Godin, author, We Are All Weird
“Profound, far-reaching, and one of those books people will be bragging about having read five or ten years from now.”

John Hagel, Co-Director, Center for the Edge; coauthor, The Power of Pull
“This book provides a much-needed road map for a profound shift in global markets. Vendor Relationship Management will turn markets as we know them inside out. Searls, as the key architect of this new movement, provides a compelling view of both why and how these changes will occur. You cannot afford to ignore this book."

Esther Dyson, angel investor—
“From Doc’s mouth to vendors’ ears! Doc Searls describes the economy the way it should be, with vendors paying attention to individuals’ wants and needs. I see a few such business models emerging, and I hope Searls’s book will incite a rush of them.”

Don Peppers and Martha Rogers, Ph.D., co-authors of Extreme Trust: Honesty as a Competitive Advantage
“Deliciously skeptical of today’s business models, Searls paints a compelling picture of the future. And if you’re a business manager, The Intention Economy is essential reading. Think of it as an API for dealing with empowered customers. ”

Clay Shirky, author, Here Comes Everybody and Cognitive Surplus
“No one has a better sense of the changing relationship between vendors and the rest of us than Doc Searls. In The Intention Economy, he explains the networked economy and your place in it, whoever you are—buyer, seller, advertiser, user.”

Seth Godin
"Profound, far-reaching, and one of those audiobooks people will be bragging about having heard five or ten years from now."
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781422158524
  • Publisher: Harvard Business Review Press
  • Publication date: 5/1/2012
  • Pages: 320
  • Sales rank: 813,229
  • Product dimensions: 6.30 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author


Doc Searls is senior editor of Linux Journal, coauthor of The Cluetrain Manifesto, and one of the world’s most widely read bloggers. In The World is Flat, Thomas L. Friedman calls him “one of the most respected technology writers in America.” Searls is a fellow at the Center for Information Technology & Society (CITS) at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and an alumnus fellow at the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University, where he continues to run ProjectVRM.
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted January 9, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Imagine a world where unknown companies can¿t track your every d

    Imagine a world where unknown companies can’t track your every digital move, and where you don’t have to click, agree and assume all the liability in every transaction. Technology writer Doc Searls envisions that world as the future “Intention Economy,” a setting in which people access “Vendor Relationship Management” (VRM) tools that make vendor-customer interactions far more equitable than they are now. Searls intelligently analyzes the web today, the one-sidedness of vendor-customer relationships and the changes VRM can enable. Although tech-savvy readers will enjoy Searls’s conversational style, getAbstract warns that nongeeks might find some of his concepts hard to grasp. Even so, Searls’s vision is relevant to vendors as well as customers.

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  • Posted May 1, 2012

    Want to understand how to market in the big data economy? Here's how.

    Doc Searls focuses on the four-party economy in this very interesting exploration of how the Web economy is beginning to favor agents that help to focus the intent of buyers, via capabilities such as "concierge"-like services in the cloud or via API-driven services that help us to understand what it is that can meet our demands - sometimes even before we've expressed them explicitly. Understanding the intent lying behind demands is the key to driving markets to the right buyers at the right time. You might call it inferential value generation, a type of service that comes to conclusions about things based on big data analysis and intersecting it with personal profiles. Doc has some deep thinking on this topic, but he presents it in an easy-to-read format that makes it fun to learn about this concept.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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