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Consumers create the brand via social media, says expert

Online merchants need to understand that their consumers play a major role in shaping the brand.

Many internet retailers are looking to use social media websites such as LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook to advertise their products, according to Tim Gibbon, director at Elemental.

However, a number of these firms are not realizing that customers are not just participating in spreading the brand's message.

Instead, in the way they discuss the products and provide feedback they actually shape the brand's reputation and take it in new directions.

"With the very nature of social media, businesses are starting to realize through learning hard lessons that their approach in creating strategies and content needs to change to adapt and let go a little bit more," Mr Gibbon explained.

He also recently warned that companies must think carefully before entering the social media "gold rush", to avoid going in with an ineffective strategy.

Posted by Richard Jones