The Tug of War between Consumers and Marketers
Enabling More Successful Innovation

Marking the Boundary of the Customer Community

Over at ClickZ, Rob Graham comments on the new consumer-generated video ads and contrasts the success of George Masters ad for the Apple iPod Mini with the Volkswagen Polo ad where the car blows up. (I'm not linking because these ads are easy to find and most readers have already seen them.)

As my colleague Adrian Sweet pointed out last week, the general public's ability to create and post negative brand ads is also a reality for advertisers. Most computer users are just a few software packages away from becoming media producers. One more reason why companies must be increasingly vigilant in keeping their customers satisfied.

I agree with him, but I don't think it's possible to make everyone happy. Strong brands are always going to have detractors as well as supporters. So as marketers we need to think hard about what our brand contributes to our customer's lives and how we would like it to be used. And when your brand is hijacked you have to speak up. It's just the price of fame.