“And His disciples said to Him, ‘You see the crowd pressing in on You; how can you say, ‘Who touched me?”
We all know the importance of being close to our consumers but never more than now are we experiencing the ability to not only know who they are but to really know about them in a way never possible before. How we act and interact with the web is not a full picture of a person but in many ways it has proven to be the best consumer information ever. Tracking and following what and how someone experiences things on the web and through social media opens up all kinds of opportunities. Many companies are capitalizing upon the information and targeting very precisely their products and services. Others would like to do so, but they are bound by privacy restrictions as well as the “creepy factor”. For instance, LinkedIn, if they wanted to do so, could predict exactly when someone is going to change a job and where they are going next. It’s not a hard algorithm. A person gets active on LinkedIn and starts updating their profile and making lots of connection. Bingo, they have become an active job seeker. From there they start adding connections from people at different companies and each time more than five are added from a single company, bam now we know a company they have interviewed with. And then one day all of the flurry of activity stops. Boom, in two weeks or so we will see an announcement and changed profile to a new company and role, most likely to the company where the last set of connections were made. Who would want this information, beyond obviously the current employer of the job seeker? Well, if I was a real estate agent, a moving van line, a clothing store, a financial advisor, a credit card company, a car company, yada yada, I might be interested. So, the challenge is how do we take advantage of the consumer closeness that we can have to move our business forward?
In the account of the woman with the blood there are many, many lessons for us to take with us. I have heard and read this story many times and I was always struck by how Jesus, even when bustled by the crowds, was in tune enough to feel the closeness of those around Him. When the woman touched his robe, he could feel her faith. How wonderful it would be if we could each have the level of faith that the woman had who at that time didn’t know what, if anything, would happen, but still she reached to touch Jesus. That is true faith. And in this lesson is also a call to each one of us to be close and aware to those around us so that when they reach out, we can know them and respond in a way that is with caring and His love. There is no excuse in our advanced world to not stay in touch, know, and be close to others. Let’s today be close.
Reference Mark 5:31