Advertising and marketing are changing and more than ever, and it’s the customers who are pulling the strings. The Internet has given customers ever-increasing powers to research, compare, and review brands, enabling both good and bad customer experiences to be broadcast to the world. This is proving challenging for many companies, who’ve always exercised so much control over their brand messages.
But many brands are harnessing the power of the Internet and “social proof” by optimizing user-generated content (UGC). These are the brands that understand the power of co-creating their brand together with consumers and tapping into the creativity of their biggest fans. For most companies, this also means encouraging–and actively participating in–reviews of their products/services and conversations around them, either on their own, or on third party websites.
Examples of customer co-creation aren’t limited to product reviews, however. Other strategies employed by companies highlighted in this article include enabling customers to vote on new product designs, to produce advertisements, “share with a friend” campaigns and creating content that supports worthwhile causes.
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