This article discusses the folly of approaching customer engagement as a short term bolt-on technique rather than "an organisational commitment to forging more valuable relationships with your customer."

"Valuable customer relationships only form around organisations that demonstrate a rich understanding of its audience members, in ways that touch those members so persuasively that they are keen to experience the relationships again.

Any customer engagement strategy that starts from a channel marketing perspective tends to fail because it treats engagement as an add-on to the existing marketing suite rather than as an operational necessity. In fact, engagement is a priority for your customer.

Effective engagements are internalised by us as customers, becoming tradable tokens of our identity, symbols we actively desire to share with our peers to confirm the sensibilities we have in common.

To attain that level of engagement, the organisation must first profoundly understand what needs its customers have; then decide which of those needs it makes sense for it to attempt to answer, as a brand; and last but not least, assess those options in light of the capacity available to mobilise departments around consistent delivery of that answer. The web 2.0 vehicle, whatever form it takes, is merely the “front end” for a much deeper organisational alignment around the customer."

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