Crowdsourcing on Facebook Gets You Consumers’ Ideas and Their Purchases

Few brands use Facebook to crowdsource consumer insights. Those that don't miss out on the big payoff this social activity can provide. Why aren't more brands using Facebook to tap consumers for new ideas? Facebook is usually managed by the marketing team, but crowdsourcing initiatives tend to be run by R&D.

Most marketers don’t realize that the value of crowdsourcing goes beyond the innovative ideas consumers provide. For example, consumers who contribute ideas to IdeaStorm, Dell’s online portal for consumer ideas, will spend more money and make more purchases than consumers who don’t contribute to it. In addition, research has shown that crowdsourcing with consumers can result in greater customer satisfaction, and can increase positive word of mouth by participants.

With concrete evidence that crowdsourcing can drive revenue, increase satisfaction and build brand advocates, there’s no question that marketers should have a stake in crowdsourcing initiatives. But for marketers to reap the full benefits of crowdsourcing, a simple yet important change needs to be made in our execution of crowdsourcing.

Right now, private online communities make up the majority of crowdsourcing initiatives. Transferring them to Facebook can amplify the positive results. Why? For marketers, the real value from crowdsourcing stems from the act of giving consumers a voice. This becomes more meaningful when you give consumers a public podium, rather than a private community, to express themselves.

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