This CRM Buyer report asks and answers, who owns the customer relationship? Author Denis Pombriant says that the relationship between the vendor and customer is an entity, and a relationship can be good or it can be dysfunctional, but it exists.
"Here's the interesting part: relationship health starts with good communication -- bi-directional communication. I've been a critic of overusing social media to spam the market and a proponent of things that support inbound communication from the marketplace. At this stage of the social revolution, we're all about outbound messaging and not enough attention is given to the inbound. The ratio of outbound to inbound need not be 50/50; in fact, most of us don't want to provide input to our vendors most of the time, and vendors don't want all of that input. But occasionally we do, and this input feeds into the idea of a healthy relationship."