Consumer Generated Media / Word of Mouth Marketing 50 Percent More Likely to Influence Purchasing Decisions Than Television & Radio Advertising

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by: Josh Hawkins

A new Intelliseek study signals dark days ahead for traditional advertising and public relations. Using a data set collected from a representative consumer survey, the study shows that consumer purchasing decisions are 50 percent more likely to be influenced by word-of-mouth endorsement than television and radio advertising. This data also reveals that peer-driven product endorsement trumps brand information carried by traditional news sources and "expert commentary" when it comes to trust and purchasing behavior (read full Intelliseek press release).

If projections hold and online consumer reviews and recommendations top 2 billion posts by the end of the year, significant changes will be imperative for traditional advertising and PR firms to development effective brand strategies in this new media environment. Namely, serious and sustained attention will need to be directed towards nurturing and empowering consumer advocacy programs, referral campaigns, affinity groups and brand evangelism. More than ever, it's clear consumers will continue to be intercepted by blogs, forums, review sites and recommender engines before they ever get to official, branded content. Message control is increasingly a thing of the past. Welcome to the age of co-creation and consumer efficacy.

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