Every student who completes this blogging assignment is exercising an ability that can be used to change the world. Sharing information that details experiences in our daily lives has the power to evolve society as a whole.
Skepticism is a part of every purchase. “Does what I’m about to buy do what I’m told it does?” That’s the question that has long been avoided by marketing campaigns in the past. For the majority of its history, advertising has been a carnie harassing consumers to toss rings in a fixed game. Advertising has remained that way for so long because we as consumers had no way to stop it until now.
The existence and accessibility of the internet changes everything. Google, Angieslist, and Goodguide are a few examples that prompt the quote “Advertising can’t bull-sh*t anyone anymore.” If someone receives poor service, a low quality product, or feels deceived, they can send that information out to a world of potential clients. This immediate feedback creates a conversation between consumers and corporations that was never there before.
There are 2.5 billion Google searches each day. Now consider that people trust only 20% of what is advertised to them, but over 90% of peer reviews. This means companies need to put more effort into getting great reviews and less into great ad space.
This evolution in marketing is promising. Chanel spent 20 million dollars on one perfume commercial that hasn’t seen 4 million views on Youtube. Pepsi spent 20 million dollars by awarding it to local community improvement ideas across the nation. More people voted on different projects to be funded by Pepsi than for Barack Obama in 2008.
Instead of an athlete pretending to drink a Pepsi with their gold medal, consumers see that buying Pepsi helped fund a local football league (and a whole lot more).
Moving ahead in the century consumers have a choice. Will we be advertised at and manipulated? Or will be heard and respected. I believe that consumer feedback will be the medium for the next great advancement in society because it makes being a moral company profitable. As consumers gain momentum only the companies that contribute to improving life where ever possible will survive the century.
The Naked Brand is an excellent documentary that illustrates the consumer empowerment movement going on right now. Check out the future of marketing at thenakedbrand.com.