March 29, 2011
With the increasing development of technology, advertising has changed significantly. These changes force organizations to adapt and embrace new concepts. The traditional way of advertising put all the control in the businesses hands although now this control shifted to the consumers. ‘Consumers are now creating their own ads for the brands they love and hate, using inexpensive software and powerful personal computers, and then distributing these via social networks such as YouTube’ (Peter Steyn, 2010). Consumer generated advertising is centered on what individuals, that consume a product or service, relay about their experience. Therefore these messages can have a positive or negative effect on a particular company or product depending on the individual’s experience. A report on www.IgoUgo.com stated that there was a 10% increase in conversion for travel sites that provide consumer-generated content. This increase is due to the messages consumers posted that provided firsthand experience. Consumers are more likely to believe other consumers compared to the company selling a product or service.
Due to the power shift from the organization to the consumer, consumer generated advertising has become very important in today’s marketing world. Some businesses are uncertain and undecided about this form of advertising but whether they like it or not it seems CGA is not going to be a fad, it may become a permanent form. Therefore it has become very important for businesses to understand the concept so they can counteract the negative advertising that is put out into social media sites such as Facebook, blogs, podcasts, and other personal web pages.
CGA has gained importance because it affects many aspects of a business. One main importance involves the advertising costs businesses suffer from. Due to this form of advertising this cost can be minimized to only a fraction of what is being spent on the traditional methods such as newspaper ads, commercials, or billboards. Before cutting advertising costs marketers need to first concentrate on how to generate positive CGA. Since this type of advertising is feedback in the consumer’s perception it helps organizations evaluate the product and decide if changes need to be made. Lastly, consumer generated advertising is more effective than the traditional methods. Effectiveness is added in two ways, it makes advertising faster due to the word-of-mouth method that is used between consumers and it creates a ‘real’ feel which in turn produces more credibility towards a product or service. The development of technology and popularity of social medias has lead to the integration of consumer generated advertising in marketing practices. These new developments and growing popularity are something marketers cannot ignore. The development of the internet and social media sites encouraged people to voice their actions, opinions and thoughts on many different topics. Since there is a great majority of consumers creating content about a product or company marketers must address it and make it a part of their practices.
Due to the fact that the consumer is the key component it is vital that the organizations allow them to engage in the production processes. By both components collaborating together it provides an advantage for not only one side but both. Since the consumers have a say, have the feeling of being heard and get to choose what they would like to see in the markets it provides them with advantages. When the consumer feels like they are being heard they develop a relationship with that brand or a co-creation. An example of a co-creation between a consumer and an organization is the contest Firefox Flicks had that allowed consumers to submit a 30 second clip where one would be picked and aired. This gives consumers incentive to get creative and form a relationship with the...