The proper care and feeding of customers is a hot topic these days. Whether the discussion goes under the name customer satisfaction, zero defections, loyalty or intimacy, the customer issue has pushed its way to the top of the agenda for a growing number of C.E.O.'s.Yet despite all that attention, surprisingly little is said about a core problem many a chief executive faces: how do I insure that my end customers receive the right service at the right price? Indeed, although at least half of all goods and a significant portion of services flow through distribution channels, most of the extensive body of writing about customer care either addresses services provided directly to customers -- by airlines, banks, hotels -- or simply skirts the complication of dealing through intermediaries. This article addresses head-on the unique challenges faced by suppliers of goods and services that flow through distribution channels.