Digital marketing: the power of social apponomics

One challenge continues to beset a large number of companies looking to generate higher returns from the Web:  How do you enhance your online business model to increase revenues and customer satisfaction while reducing costs?

According to strategy+business, a newsletter published by the consultancy Booze & Company, the secret lies in the development of a new go-to-market model called “social apponomics.” A new concept, SA is the blend of three compelling and symbiotic online developments: social media-powered community mobilization and interaction; the maturation of CRM-based e-commerce applications and; the emergence of powerful mobile functionality.  For firms that have discovered the SA success formula, the payoff has been impressive:  higher product sales & loyalty; an improved customer experience and; lower operating costs.

SA deployments are a work in progress in many companies.  However, some market leaders have got it right: 


This e-tailing colossus ($31B 2010 revenues) has led the way in delivering a world class sales and customer experience platform.  Amazon’s shoppers are regularly exposed to useful features such as product recommendations, customer reviews and special offers.  With only one click, customers can purchase Amazon products directly or through a huge and governed third-party marketplace.  This market access is enabled through a variety of mobile devices including the Kindle, their own e-reader.   


Intuit, a $3B provider of tax and accounting solutions for individuals, accountants and small businesses, brings its consumers directly into its product development and testing process.  Through, the firm has been able to rapidly roll out more compelling product upgrades.  In addition, Intuit cultivates a vibrant user community by:  bringing together small businesses and entrepreneurs, offering local classified ads and providing an audience-driven wiki for educational purposes.


A unique SA model has helped this online movie distributor attract 15 million North American members and generate $1.3B in revenues.  Netflix goes beyond customized interfaces, personalized recommendations and iterative filtering technology; the Company’s offering allows customers to access movies on-demand as well as manage lists, explore 3rd party reviews and add movies to their queues, all through variety of regular and mobile channels. 

Many lessons can be gleaned from these early SA adopters, including:

Humanize the experience

Customers are more likely to transact at a site that is focused on them versus corporate interests.  Firms like Amazon engage individuals in free and open dialogue, foster trust and feature unique, personalized service.  They also provide intuitive user interfaces, ease of support and aesthetically pleasing visuals.

Think local

Product and customer experience designers should heed research that suggests that local tastes, preferences and physical proximity are still important to customers in a virtual environment.  Moreover, firms should facilitate mobile consumers by providing location specific products, services and offers.  

Target micro segments

New web analytics tools allow companies to track customer need states in real time on a highly granular level.  Access to richer amounts of customer data enables marketers to target high potential, hitherto unexploited segments with tailored products, customized promotions and user experiences.

Recruit your customers

Firms now have the ability to inexpensively and rapidly enlist their customer as product reviewers, referral sources and support staff through the use of Crowdsourcing strategies that leverage “the wisdom of crowds” and reduce operating costs.  Market leaders like Apple have gained significant competitive advantage using Crowdsourcing programs.

The above examples suggest that there is no “one size fits all” SA solution.  How SA is exploited will depend on the firm’s business strategy, culture, partners and IT infrastructure.  Fortunately, there are now a number of best practices to learn from.

For more information on our services and work, please visit the Quanta Consulting Inc. web site.


4 comments so far

  1. […] Digital marketing: the power of social apponomics « Mitchell Osak … Esta entrada foi publicada em E-Commerce, Social Media e marcada com a tag social-media. Adicione […]

  2. […] social networking is enabling consumers to take control of how marketing messages are distributed an…– at the expense of company-sponsored sites.  Buyers now attach significant value to online […]

  3. […] Typical marketing communications is a turnoff to customers as well as employees.  Increasingly, consumers want valuable, objective and timely content – not just slogans – that helps them and respects their […]

  4. […] Typical marketing communications is a turnoff to customers as well as employees.  Increasingly, consumers want valuable, objective and timely content – not just slogans – that helps them and respects their […]

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