The Social Economy: Be Part of the Revolution!
So we know that the use of new technologies has a great impact on how people behave, but what does it mean for businesses? As we discussed on my last post, during the Arab Spring, Syrians started disbelieving what their government said through traditional media. And today, in the same way, consumers are increasing their disbelieve for traditional advertisement (what companies say about their products). In that sense, we can say there is a migration of trust from companies to consumers, because consumers use the word-of-mouth as a new form of advertisement. And these can be unbiased recommendations that can be found anywhere on-line. Take for instance Yelp, launched back in 2004, that continues to be the go-to resource for millions of visitors looking for information about local businesses. Here they get information, compare businesses, and make a choice between restaurant A and restaurant B based on people reviews of these places.
So all comes down to one thing: Consumers want to be connected to other consumers and not companies. So what if you run a local business like a restaurant? Then, Yelp should be an essential cornerstone of your on-line presence. And here you should aim to help consumers connect to each other with a main subject in their mind – your brand. It is not only about participating in the conversion, it is about managing conversations, managing a community of followers. As Amanda Palmer said: “It is literally about being able to maintain, lead, and host a constant conversation.”
What will this generate? At first brand awareness. And if your brand stands up to their proposal, bringing a truthful message and an experience that goes in hand or beyond to what you propose, you will stablish a unique connection with consumers that will generate ultimately, not only brand value, but also economic value (revenue).