I hate lock-in. Lock-in is when you wrap a product up with so much proprietary stuff that the customer can’t move to a competing offering. The advantage to the company is that they dramatically reduce customer churn—thus reducing the need for marketing—and can focus sales efforts more on acquiring new customers, rather than keeping existing customers happy.

That last part is also the problem, because once lock-in is achieved, companies tend to defund efforts to keep customers happy…and increasingly focus on raising prices as a way to raise revenues. Companies that embrace this strategy effectively morph from being customer-focused to being more like organized crime and a protection racket. You don’t buy because you want to, you buy because you don’t have a choice.

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