Earning the Attention of Web 2.0 Consumers

In today’s connected world, consumers have more power than ever. Those who attract their attention will earn that right by being remarkable, telling compelling stories, and engaging them, according to author and entrepreneur Seth Gordin. Those who can’t attract these new passionate and powerful consumers will become irrelevant.

Godin told representatives of some of the largest jewelry manufacturers in the world that we are living in the “century of the idea diffusion.” Meaning that consumers have access to an infinite number of ideas, products, and messages, and more importantly, they have the power to either ignore those messages or spread the information farther, faster, and more cheaply than ever before.

“Ideas that spread win,” Godin said. “If people don’t know your idea, you don’t exist.”

Godin spoke about Web 2.0 March 2 at the first Plumb Club Forum @FIT—an educational initiative to benefit Plum Club members and the jewelry industry at large. This year’s forum (held March 2 and 3) focused on the “Changing Landscape of the Jewelry Industry.”

Godin says that the “TV industrial complex is broken.” Marketers who continue to use traditional media techniques to attract eyeballs are “Neanderthals.”

People in a Web 2.0 world are no longer passive viewers of content. Instead they share information, manipulate it, and provide feedback. To engage these consumers, marketers must build relationships with them. It’s about “earning permission” for their attention, he said. But how do you so this? His suggestions include:

* Create things that have value instead of creating things that are cheap.

* Think about how to create things that spread.

* Let your best customers feel that they are loved.

* Consumers are going to sell to other consumers. So if you are able to connect with people, you win.

* Don’t be afraid to go after the “long tail,” and connect with the relative small percentages of people who have unusual tastes. With the Internet theses relatively small groups are now big in number. And they are often the people most passionate about what they buy and most willing to spread the word. “Who they are matter, so much more than knowing many,” he said.

*Tell stories that are true and resonate.

* Be remarkable. Create products, tell stories, and connect in ways that are worth making remarks about.

“Create these engagements so people will be willing to give their attention.”