The new marketing paradigm shifts from control to collaboration. It turns from vertical to horizontal, as most consumers trust other consumers rather than businesses: word of mouth and social media are at the core of new customer relationships. Businesses no longer control their brands, as these are owned by the customers and are developed through collaboration among them all.
All what companies do is aligning their actions to their corporate mission and empowering costumers to become active agents in the accomplishment of the mission as brand controllers and innovators, hence ultimately becoming brand ambassadors. To approach customers’ human spirit, these have to view the business as a change agent that strives to make the world a better place according to their concerns. Then, as long as the mission is successfully accomplished and there is a growing awareness about such accomplishment, the destination’s brand becomes a symbol within the stakeholders’ lives.
Marketing 3.0 is based upon co-creation, communitization and characters. Customers and other stakeholders take an active role in the development of experiences and stories through collaborative innovation platforms. Starting from a generic experience, every tourist can tailor it to his needs and motivations, and eventually share it with the community explaining his story and thus nurturing the innovation system with new ideas. For a brand to become a symbol, it needs that its stories create great characters with whom the stakeholders feel identified, as they strive and manage to address the community challenges and concerns.
Beyond photo sharing in social media, word of mouth, ratings and reviews for specific services such as restaurants and accommodation, do you think that there is ever any chance for tourists to contribute on the destination’s marketing?