Frankly, handled right registration can be converted from being a barrier into being a feature. Think velvet ropes and VIP rooms. Also, that consumer objection to signing up is just generally getting quieter and smaller every day as people’s use of social networking mediums that demand sign-up for participation grows. Add single sign-on mechanisms, either individual or one of the social media platform initiatives like OpenID, etc. and this becomes negligible.
And BTW? There’s nothing in the language of the VOW agreement or any other I know of (big caveat on that one) that precludes a broker from maintaining both of those feeds. That introduces some interesting hybrid UX/reg-path possibilities. This is a very solvable problem.
This is all very relevant to our Summit meetings this week, where we’re covering a lot of material on our customer portals and how they create opportunities for improving service to customers through people data. Go read Liam’s entire post.