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The Business Value of Consumer Participation through Social Media

Miia Kosonen and Hanna-Kaisa Ellonen
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Miia Kosonen: Lappeenranta University of Technology, Finland
Hanna-Kaisa Ellonen: Lappeenranta University of Technology, Finland

International Journal of Interactive Communication Systems and Technologies (IJICST), 2012, vol. 2, issue 1, 1-17

Abstract: Despite the growing enthusiasm about social media’s revolutionary potential, there is a lack of research on the possible business-side benefits. The authors maintain that in order to realize social media’s business potential, it is essential to identify the roles in which customers can participate in value co-creation. This study explores consumer participation enabled by social interaction technologies in the context of the newspaper and magazine industry. A qualitative analysis of 31 interviews with the publishers of the leading Finnish newspapers and magazines was conducted. A typology of six different roles of online consumer participation was developed: namely, agent, commentator, tester, debater, content producer, and messenger. The more company-driven types of participation (agent, commentator, and tester) can be integrated with product development support and learning from customers, the more consumer-driven types (debater, content producer, and messenger) are able to provide brand support and options for value co-creation.

Date: 2012
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