5 comments on “Crowd-Sourcing: A Toast to the Customer

  1. An Awesome blog !! Some good thoughts (both within the blog content and in the discussions too)..
    Going through your arguments about how converting a complaining customer to a satisfied one is more applicable in case of services only, dont you think that the whole idea of crowd sourcing somehow is more related to services itself. Strictly speaking, if we are to talk about the 4 P’s of marketing (used for products), I only see customers making valuable (and implementable) suggestions into perhaps the packaging most easily. If you look at the 3 extra P’s – customers can surely help you with the processes, physical evidence and people a little more easily.
    Just a thought !

    • It might vary, depending on how a manufaturer/service provider is willing to use crowd-sourcing. So, for instance, Philips, in a famous example of crowd sourcing, asked a lot of its prospective customers about the features they needed in a product, before launching the now-famous and critically acclaimed Rural chulha. It was designed based on strong inputs from the customer base. This was an example of use of Crowd-sourcing for products.

      So, the customer/viewer can only contribute ideas, and it is upto the company to incorporate the same in the 4Ps/7Ps framework and see in which form they can be manifested. It is the customer’s viewpoint which matters, not its logicality or rationality, because at the end of the day,the customer IS the King and his opinions, however irrational-sounding, have to be taken into account.

  2. Sir,

    I agree to your point. I also believe I have not elucidated my perspective properly. Let me refine it a little bit:

    While handling customer complaints and solving them is an ideal thing for businesses to do, it is easier to do so in service-based industries, especially because the business offering there is of the nature that complaints can be easily/more quickly resolved (e.g. issue with airline ticket refund, problems with internet connectivity etc). For the product-based companies, while they attempt to do the same, it is difficult for them to leverage on solving these problems because their turnaround time is higher. So, they might change the taste of a instant food product to suit consumer needs better, or, make the light illumination better for a CFL, but since these innovations take time, it becomes difficult for the company to leverage the fact that they have acted upon consumer feedback.

    Although you are absolutely right in stating that turning complaints to solutions is the best thing to do.

    Keep reading and commenting sir. Your views are incredibly important and motivating to me.

    Warm Regards
    Sushant Bahadur

  3. Hey Sushant,

    As usual, this is a timely and rewarding post. I beg to differ qith you slightly on the last paragraph of this post. You say “. If consumers in general don’t like the brand/product, involving them in business decision will be more of an exercise in self-demotivation than leading to the above-mentioned wonders.Unhappy customers or indifferent customers might compain and turning complaints into solutions is rewarding.

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