If you value me, you will know my name

A simple email addressed ‘Dear Valued Customer’ can ruin a day. Names matter; they’re personal. With technology, there’s no excuse for impersonal communication. It’s a sign of disregard and laziness.

I had a pretty hard day recently and topping the cherry of my nasty ice-cream was a mail from a bank and it went “Dear Valued Customer”.

I smashed something.

Backtrack to some 3 decades ago. I remember how we picked chicken fights when someone made a mess of our name, especially surname. There is something so important to names that everyone has at least one; sometimes a name is only what some people have got.

If you really value me as your customer then I should be a person. It’s bad enough to be a statistic. It’s worse that you don’t even have the decency to call me by name.

With cheap and accessible technology nobody, I mean no company worthy of its salt, can say it doesn’t have access to tools to personalize services talk less of emails. So it means one thing – either the company is clueless or doesn’t give two horse legs about me.

It’s like choosing between getting shot in the forehead or on the temple. Both are bad propositions.

Why should I care about you if you don’t care about me?

I don’t know if my conclusion is grounded in science or hogwash but I strongly believe that companies that personalize greetings, emails, SMS, and other interactions would also be good in customer service. It shouldn’t be a rocket science to feel that someone who goes through that pain to make me feel special would care enough to provide a good service.

Personalizing services isn’t trivial but getting your customers back after losing them would be much more difficult.

Some customers don’t have taste.

I see it every day – people, practically everyone on two legs, take rubbish work they pay dearly for. Bad painting, poor haircut, badly sewn dresses, etc. So when they get “Dear Valued Customer” they feel no pain.

This is going to be a tough battle!

Netflix eats Cable TV's dinner

Netflix strolled into Nigeria yesterday, as well as 129 other countries. I know it’s no big deal to a lot of people but trust me, it is to some. It’s like we are finally free of certain companies holding Nigerians to ransom. No name calling please; I have home training!

Netflix is an online video/movies streaming company. They started with video rentals with a subscription model, which was innovative at that time, and captured the market with unlimited views and no late return fees. Netflix is an example of high-performance innovative company; they quickly jumped on the bandwagon of internet movies and today account for 45% of all internet traffic in the US between the hours of 6PM and 9PM. Netflix offers millions of movies at very low and simple subscription model – pay a flat fee a month and watch as many as your eye balls could endure. Cancel anytime you want and come back when you are led by the spirit.

Initially confined to US, they aggressively moved into new territories such as Europe, Brazil, etc. but yesterday, in one giant sweep, entered into 130 new territories, including Ikeja, Lekki, Abuja and Kaduna. Ok, you get the drift.
If you want to read about the history of Netflix, go here. But the founder, Reed Hastings, is a personal hero of mine. Supremely smart, simple and hey, he demystified movies for everyone. But that isn’t all, he’s a great dude to work for.

When compared to what we currently get now from cable TVs, there is even no basis for comparison. Instead of paying N17K a month to watch from maximum of two TVs, you can get 4 simultaneous screens for $11.99 per month.
No need to even record and watch again, the movies are always there. Pause on the TV and continue on your phone. You can’t ask for more.

Some things are missing though:

I want to watch live TV, such as CNN, to just listen to Donald Trump yap.
Hate it or love it, Nollywood is keeping certain companies alive in Nigeria today. Mostly crappy content but hey, they love it if not they would have stopped acting. Haters like Deji Olowe can go hug an electric pole.

I want to see Arsenal get spanked, live. OK, sports is a big deal! Who doesn’t want to watch Wimbledon or see that British boy, what’s his name again, run around in circles in formula 1 cars.

When things like this happens, there would be gainers and losers, let’s talk about them.


My friends and millions of Nigerians that want access to good movies. I mean, crawling to the cinemas can be a dog of a chore. Buying pirated movies is too much hassles for my simple life. Imagine having access to millions of movies on demand, play, pause, rewind and just anytime I want. Series don enter wahala!
Smile, Swift and other internet providers will now have guys guzzling their bandwidth like hell. Smile will probably see an uptick in its unlimited plan because 5GB of internet is just one Netflix HD movie

Banks will discover new and stable revenue stream of customers doing international transactions without leaving Nigeria. It’s small but it’s steady. Trust me, some banks are already prepping communications to their customers about this. What do you expect?


Cable TV. I’m sorry but babes thou art overpriced! Some of my friends spend upward of 17K a month to watch what? Super crap most often than not. If you miss a video, so be it.

Pirates will discover that it’s cheaper for their customers to do Netflix than buy CDs but no chilling 🙂
Banks may face more fraud issues as the payment process for Netflix is, I’m sorry, too simple not to be abused by just anyone. Just enter your card information and that’s it. Nothing stops anyone from using a stolen card to watch few mojos for some months.


My annual vacation is rapidly winding down so with hours left to spare, I tried to catch on some reading; I love to read because I can imagine things not possible, go back over sentences, laugh, scream, and scowl; nobody’s gonna judge me.

Some good long forms that I found interesting:

Bob Henderson lost $200M and got it all back. Never say it’s over until it’s really over

Rosie and Samantha are like Gordon Gekko of the strippers’ world. I’m happy I never met them

The world has gone really mad about Digital, McKinsey weighed in on the issue
2016 may be disruptive for electronic payments

By the way, TL;DR means Too Long; Don’t Read.