A Consumer Never Forgets

Tell me if this has ever happened to you.

You're a good customer of a store. You've always bought things from that store. They know you there. They like you there.

Then low and behold, the holidays hit and suddenly that store has a lot of customers. Suddenly you're not so special, not so unique. In fact, you're just one of the throngs -- no more, no less.

Forget about special treatment, you'd be grateful for any treatment. But you're not getting it.

And you start thinking, "Jeez, I've been here when nobody was here. And now, this?"

It has happened to me and it got me thinking. How many retailers make the mistake in this hustle-bustle rush, of forgetting the guys who helped them when there was no hustle and there was no bustle?

I see it all the time.

The hotel that won't bend for a regular customer because incoming holiday crowds will gladly pay top dollar.

The clothing store that used to wrap for you as a favor for a frequent customer, but now can't be bothered.

The auto dealer you've faithfully given business, but keeps you waiting as a harried salesman tends to his next hot prospect. I remember seeing that one myself and the guy just walked out, promising never to buy from that dealer again.

I keep seeing it. And I keep wondering about it.

Be careful, retailers, hotels, auto-dealers. The bustling crowds you have now won't be there forever, they won't even be there for long.

It's like friends: You remember the ones who were with you when no one was. Just like retailers would be wise to remember the folks who were with them before the crowds were.

Crowds, like fair-weather friends, go. It's a pity that some cannot tell the difference. Because I can and I never forget.

Watch Neil Cavuto's Common Sense weekdays at 4 p.m. ET on Your World w/Cavuto.