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Consumer Generated Mixing

Consumer Generated Content continues to rise and my prediction is that 2007 will finally see the big brands come out with regular campaigns to engage consumers and in the process allowing consumers to have greater control over the brand message.

One of the big ways this will happen is with Consumer Generated Mixing.
This is where Videos, Pictures and Music is made available to consumers, as well as the tools to Mix the content into a Consumer Generated Mix or Mashup. This is a key step, as it suddenly brings campaigns within reach of anyone with internet access, rather than restricting mashups to knowledgeable video editors.

Some of the online mixing tools include :-
Cuts allows consumers to bring a video, make a cut and then share the cut with other people.
Jumpcut is probably a little more advanced, but also invites consumers to make stuff, edit and share.
Photobucket has just announced a tool that utilises Adobe’s web-based video remix and editing technology

Techcrunch has a more detailed post on the major players in this space.

So now to the brand promotional campaigns using some of these tools ?
Lumines II for the PSP game
Congress in 30 seconds
Nike Soccer

Perspective: Watch this space, as I predict you will see a wave of them in the coming months.

Word Source

My kids are learning to look up a dictionary .. and my trusty old Oxford dictionary is being pulled out of retirement. I must admit I have been using Internet sites such as Dictionary.com, mostly for it’s Thesaurus function.

So when Techcrunch reported the launch of Word Source today, I thought I would give it a try.

wordsource

Apart from the absence of ads (which may not last long), what impressed me is the clean web 2.0 look and feel, and some social media utilities such as tagging and linking photos to works. This becomes a useful tool, when you want to grab a picture to describe words. Not many words have pictures yet, and I wonder whether it would have been easier to link this site to Flickr which is a great site to find pictures relating to words. For example, here are Flickr’s photos tagged with the word trust.

Jetblue CEO uses Youtube

Jetblue CEO, David Neeleman has posted a YouTube video, to reach out to customers promising better times ahead. The video has been seen over 25,000 times at time of writing.

Here’s a few of the comments

Dear Mr. Neeleman,
Kudos! There aren’t many CEO’s out there that would take the time to post a genuine apology. This shows how much you truly care about Customers and Crewmembers.
Thanks!

David,indeed you are brave man; facing reality & honesty by communicating directly with your customers. Jetblue is a great company. I am a PM myself, and when situations of this nature occur, I can distinguish the fact that you need sharp and well trained operational/conflict resolution PM’s on the bridge and on the floor. It’s worth the investment; only one more fiasco + your recoup will be costly & difficult. Keep it up, & make a big Jetblue.

Perspective: This is a good example of a semi-unscripted video that appeals because it comes over as a real attempt to engage consumers. Not all the comments are positive .. but at least David has opened up a dialogue to his consumers .. Well Done!

Mini follows BMW into short films

minihammer

In a move that reminds me very much of the BMW films, Mini is going to lauch a series of short films to advertise the Mini Coop. (not surprising given that Mini is owned by BMW). The movies bring back memories of the Knight Rider .. but are entertaining and engaging.

Mini USA are also planning to run cinema trailers through over 1900 theatres, and will also run print ads in Rolling Stone, Maxim and Men’s Health.

Check the site out at Hammerandcoop.com

Perspective: This is yet another example where marketeers have recognised that content is king. I believe Mini will get a far better return with this technique than running 30 second spots. i just wonder whether they could have implemented a “Consumer Generated Content” contest into the campaign .. as I am sure there will be some clever people making their own version which will of course be on YouTube soon.

Chinese New Year – SMS

Saturday night was the celebration of Chinese New Year both in China and around the world.
Just to show how fast technology is being adopted and used in China, Shanghai celebrated by sending more than 570 million text messages ! Beijing had something like 400 million.

Perspective: That is one large volume for the network providers .. but just goes to show the large potential of the market in China. For example .. could a Flower shop provide animated flower animations that consumers could send to their friend, were brands providing branded Happy New Year ring tones for consumers to use?