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(November 30, 2000, Gazette)

Dr. Jim BarnesDr. Jim Barnes

Secrets of Customer Relationship Management: It's all about how you make them feel

By Dr. Jim Barnes

Secrets of Customer Relationship Management: It's all about how you make them feel is the latest book written by Dr. Jim Barnes, professor of marketing with the Faculty of Business Administration. Although an accomplished writer of six textbooks, Dr. Barnes’ latest work represents his first professional management book.

"In the early '90s, there were many articles and books written about relationship marketing; however, these primarily discussed customer relationships from a business perspective and not from the customer's perspective or the customer's definition of a relationship," said Dr. Barnes.

Secrets of customer relationship managementAs a member of Memorial's faculty and co-founder and former chairman of Bristol Group, Dr. Barnes has facilitated numerous focus groups and interviews locally and internationally about customer/business relationships with customers from a myriad of businesses. Through these interviews, he realized that there was a great deal more to customer relationship management than the simple accumulation of customer names in a corporate database.

With this in mind, Dr. Barnes began to read social psychology research into relationship development and determined that the fundamental principles of interpersonal relationships were the same as those in customer/business relationships. In his book, he analyses and discusses all "the emotional factors" that contribute to the development of genuine customer relationships.

Adding to his findings, Dr. Barnes has cited examples of local Newfoundland businesses that exemplify and genuinely understand the importance of customer relationship management.

"For more than 30 years customers have been telling me what matters to them, what makes them loyal to a business and what turns them off," said Dr. Barnes. "This book is a culmination of that learning."

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