By Consumers, For Consumers

This article on AgencySpy got me thinking today. With the invention of mobile phones with video cameras, YouTube and recording and editing software it has become increasingly easy for the average person to document their experiences with their favorite brands. We've seen this recently with the Dutch Heineken walk in freezer ad. (To view the original ad click here.) I'm still waiting to hear if this is for real.

And now we have this lovely ad for Trader Joe's or arguably the Palm Treo.

Not all consumer material is positive of course. The below Comcast video is enough to make any PR person cringe.

Even though some user-generated content is a cause for crisis communications I urge PR and advertising professionals to not take positive user-generated videos for granted. When a brand has consumers championing their product or service they should think of ways to leverage the attention. Maybe they would make good spokespeople? Heck, maybe they'd even do well in an ad? Perhaps you could use them to write a blog post on the company web site or become a regular contributor. There are lots of different ways to involve and embrace your brand ambassadors. Don't let them slip through your fingers!


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