This post refers to the September 8th Smoke Signals Report from the Tribal DDB Worldwide Network
All quotes are from the aforementioned article.
“While bookmarking is certainly nothing new, users have been adding images on Pinterest, saving content on Evernote, and storing URLs on Delicious for quite some time; a startup called Gimme Bar is offering a new twist on things by enabling people to not only bookmark content, but also store text, images, and videos in the cloud.”
The first thing I thought of was “this is an artists dream”. With the ability to pull from so many different sources of inspiration gimme would be of most benefit to people in really creative fields such as fashion, music and art. Brands often are reluctant to relinquish control of their content much less their brand but with the rise of broadband and digital conversation this is a must.
“Implication: Despite the fact that the Internet is full of the temporary, users will always be reassured by tangible copies. In addition, users are also moving towards wanting more control of the content they consume. When producing content, brands should consider a variety of consumer needs, including the desire to have a backup and the desire to manipulate content .”
Allowing users to access, manipulate and create new content inspired by your own can only bring benefit to both the brand and the person interacting with it. In a case of not seeing the forest for the trees brands and companies sometimes get caught up with the intricacies of their own products that they forget to think outside the box. Allowing people who already like your brand to interact with it and create something new is what fuels progress. A classic example of this would be in the Gaming industry, where Counter Strike Source and D.O.T.A were both created. Both are user-created mods for original games. Counter Strike was created using the Half-life engine and D.O.T.A was built on the Warcraft 3 engine. Both generated by users who were allowed to modify the product and both have brought innovation to both companies. So much so that both Counter Strike and D.O.T.A are now being brought out as stand alone games.
The potential created by allowing persons to ‘play’ with your brand and manipulate your content is enormous and all brands should embrace it thoughtfully.