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The Hidden Wealth of Customers
Realizing the Untapped Value of Your Most Valuable Asset
Harvard Business Review Press (June 2012)
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Harvard Business Review Press


Praise for The Hidden Wealth of Customers

"One of the most insightful books I've read this year."

     Dorie Clark, Forbes Online

"I'm willing to bet that most companies don't know who their 'rock star' customers are, and are missing a big piece of their future revenue engine as a result. This much-needed book shows how to capture that missing piece."

     Brian Householder, EVP, WW Marketing and Business Development, Hitachi Data Systems

"As with many business books, I had originally planned to skim this one. However, I was hooked after the first chapter. Lee covers some great concepts very well. Unfortunately, I can't associate my name with the book, because two of the firms prominently mentioned are key competitors of ours."

     Chief Customer Officer, a Fortune 500 firm

"Since 2007, corporate America has been focused first on survival and second on expense reduction as a means to growing profitability. Revenue growth has now reclaimed its rightful role as a top priority. This book will challenge business leaders to tap a superb revenue engine that's right under their noses."

     Julia Wellborn, Executive Vice President, Wealth Management, Comerica

"Bill Lee tears down myths and applies his own principles to innovate the most fundamental relationship in commerce: the customer. Regardless of what relationship your organization has with its customers, you'll come away with new ideas and a motivation to engage with customers far more profitably."

     Robert Hillard, Technology Lead Partner, Deloitte Australia; author, Information-Driven Business
     The traditional model of growing your business—by relying on internal employees or experts in sales, marketing and product development—is dying. The Hidden Wealth of Customers shows how successful companies—like Salesforce.com, SAS Institute, National Instruments, LEGO, IKEA, Hitachi Data Systems and others—are getting their customers to market, sell and create products for them. This is a trend that social media, along with the dramatic results such an approach can achieve, is accelerating.


When You Read The Hidden Wealth of Customers:

Five Things You'll Be Able to Do Better

  1. Create strong, sustained growth in the new world of marketing and sales
    ... by finding, engaging with and growing your base of key or 'rock star' customers—those powerful few who can spur dramatic improvements in your sales, marketing and innovation efforts.

  2. Gain mastery of social media
    ... by engaging key customers and influencers to generate rapid growth in word of mouth, demand generation and brand.

  3. Build vibrant, fast-growing communities of customers
    ... your most important platform for generating sustained, profitable growth in the new world of marketing.

  4. Maximize your customers' Return on Relationship
    ... by uncovering large sources of hidden wealth they can provide—your largest off-balance-sheet asset that most companies entirely overlook.

  5. Develop an arsenal of new tools for meeting major business challenges
    ... through dozens of examples and case studies showing how customers help leading firms penetrate new markets, restore declining customer retention rates, rapidly grow new lines of business, make better use of customer advocates and 'promoters, significantly improve rates of successful innovation, and much more.

To build customer profitability, most companies look only at the money customers pay for their goods and services. Through his pioneering concept of Return on Relationship®, Bill Lee shows how leading companies identify and engage a few key customers to harvest far richer sources of hidden wealth—worth many times more than anything they purchase.

Bill Lee is president of Lee Consulting Group. He is also president of Customer Reference Forum and executive director of The Summit on Customer Engagement.