Brands need to become participants on every arena

Our claim is that brands need to move from channels, where they are law enforcers, to arenas, where they are participants
. Brands need to become participants on every arena, in every interface between the brand and the customer. This means on the Internet, mobile, shop, street, product, TV etc.

In short, if you plan a marketing activity are you thinking about how to distribute a message, or are you trying to create brand value through participation?

This sound strange, but mainly because our interpretation of participation is very unimaginative.

By this I mean that our perception of participation is colored by the tools we already are familiar with. But the common web2.0 tools are just rudimentary applications for contribution and connectivity. Real participation is much richer.

    “We need to start looking at participation as something richer than getting participants to contribute their preset format content in aserial, one dimensional, string, within a rigid structure for publishing”

The slide at the bottom of the post, which is from the Next Generation Participation slideshow, tries to give a broader perspective on participation. In short we have divided participation into three main categories:

    1. Conscious – Deliberate participation initiated by the participant(s). Like Facebook
    . This is the form of participation we to a large extent are familiar with today. Where the participant actively contributes to the content.

    . Subconscious
    – Data supplied consciously by the participant creates the mechanics. But the data is collected without the participant actively publishing it. Nike+ is an example, where data is collected when the participant joins the experience – and then automatically updated by the application. The brilliance of Nike+ is how they understood that it was the data from the running experiences that was the value creating object – not people sharing experiences through written narratives.

    3. Unconscious – Data is being collected with the participants consent, or not personalized

    . New York Talk Exchange and Real-Time Rome are examples of this. The point is to collect, creatively combine and present data in a context that will ad value and meaning to participants.

    (from here)

When we start exploring the possibilities within true participation we will also start seeing the possibilities

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. This will happen as soon as we look beyond our stereotypes and preconceived ideas.

The objective still remains: (How) Can brands become participants on every arena.(?)

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  1. Virgile
    November 21

    Your blog is brilliant!
    Thanks for all the good ideas and thoughts you share!

  2. November 21

    Thank you very much for that Virgile. Appreciate it. :o)

  3. November 22

    Helge – great post. I’ve been following your thoughts for a few months now, and I’m very impressed with your ability to “pull it all together” (or ‘putting stuff together’, as you say). Keep up the great work.

  4. November 23

    Thank you Steve :o) It’s good to hear that the thoughts I share are appreciated.

  5. […] your way out of it”). But, we are not exclusively in Mass Media any more, we are on Arenas, in Services and in Communication Mediums. And this should open up the whole playing field for […]

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