The promise of the internet was to bring brands closer to their customers, deepening relationships and allowing both to understand each other better through dialogue. The first markets, Doc Searls and David Weinberger remind us in the book The Cluetrain Manifesto, were places where “supply met demand with a firm handshake.” Producer and consumer relationships blossomed through regular interaction, mutual understanding and trust.
The internet is the networked market of the digital age, yet few brands truly succeed in building customer relationships there, principally because many see the internet as an opportunity to market at their customers, rather than as a market place where they can get to know them better. There are three key areas brands should pay attention to in developing this firm handshake online. Read more