Deborah Brown & Associates

Are You a Consumer or a Customer?    
This month I asked my photographers for images that said, "Consumer."

Interestingly, Yasu Nakaoka, from Japan, thought his image was more "Customer" than "Consumer."

So what is the difference between a consumer and a customer? Here's what I came up with.

Pretty much everyone I know is a consumer. Across the board--or the world, in fact--at the most basic level, if you eat or drink anything, or even breathe, you are a consumer. Even if you don't eat, drink or breathe (yikes!), but if you wait in line to buy the next Apple product, or you hover over the "bid" button until the final second to outbid someone on eBay for the last Tom Brady framed and signed jersey collage, you're considered a consumer.

Okay, if that's true, then what about a customer? See if you agree with me here:
           Not every consumer is a customer, but every customer is a consumer.

Feel like you're in the middle of one of those brain teasers like the old favorite that starts, "Brothers and sisters I have none...?" (more on this below the images)

So, while you're mulling over the consumer/customer question, here's what the photographers came up with. It's up to you to decide if the images say "Consumer" or "Customer." Or both.

(c) Yasu Nakaoka (based in Tokyo)

(c)  Bill Gallery (based in New England)

(c) Rosanne Olson (based in Seattle)

(c) Ron Wu (based in Chicago)

(c) Neal Wilson (based in the UK)

(c) Amos Chan  (based in New York City)

To see all the above photos in a larger format, click here.

If you don't know the brain teaser I mentioned above, here it is:

A man is looking at a picture of a man on the wall and states, "Brothers and sisters I have none, but this man's father is my father's son."

Who is the man in the picture in relation to the man looking at the picture?


The first one who sends me the right answer (sorry family members, you don't get to play this one), gets a batch of my famous brownies! I'll post the results next month so we'll all know who the real consumer in the group is! Hmmmm, does that also make you a customer? 

Stay tuned for next month's word: ENERGY

All my best,