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Seth Godin invented concept of an "ideavirus" and an attendant marketing terminology. In a nutshell, he says, to use his own summation:
"Marketing by interrupting people isn't cost-effective anymore. You can't afford to seek out people and send them unwanted marketing, in large groups and hope that some will send you money. Instead future belongs to marketers who establish a foundation and process where interested people can market to each other. Ignite consumer networks and then get out of way and let them talk."
This is sound advice with a shaky conclusion. The conversion from exposure to a marketing message (even from peers within a consumer network) - to an actual sale is a convoluted, multi-layered, highly complex process. It is not a "black box", better left unattended to. It is same deadly sin all over again - belief in a miraculous conversion. And it is highly US-centric. People in other parts of world interact entirely differently.
You can get them to visit and you get them to talk and you can get them to excite others. But to get them to buy - is a whole different ballgame. Dot.coms had better begin to study its rules.
Sam Vaknin is the author of Malignant Self Love - Narcissism Revisited and After the Rain - How the West Lost the East. He is a columnist for Central Europe Review, United Press International (UPI) and eBookWeb and the editor of mental health and Central East Europe categories in The Open Directory, Suite101 and searcheurope.com.
Visit Sam's Web site at http://samvak.tripod.com