Media for the Masses, by the Masses

There are millions of reviews online on everything from doctors to clothing to dog breeds.  These reviews are often written by the average consumer who wanted to document a good or bad purchasing experience.  This movement toward media being controlled by the individual consumer is a very recent social phenomenon called groundswell that has been featured in a book called Groundswell by Charlene Li and Josh Bernoff.

So why is groundswell so important?  Groundswell indicates the movement of power from large corporations and branding managers to the millions of customers who buy a product and then go online to rate their purchase.  They are customers that CEOs, CCOs, and staff have never met and have no possible way of influencing toward writing a positive review.

Groundswell is the reason Digg, Facebook, UrbanSpoon, Pintrest and so many other active participation websites have become so popular.

The infographic that we have today is testament to the increasing power that the average person (groundswell) has in the realm of social media and how companies are changing their marketing and social media style to involve bloggers, reviewers, and online purchasers.  It is because of the groundswell that OpenTable, a site that allows diners to make reservations for their favorite restaurants and write reviews online, has over 15 million reviews!

What changes have you seen in how companies connect with their customers because of online reviewers and social media?

Source: OpenTable

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