In the 21st century, we have witnessed enormous changes in technology and media. Technology has acted as a springboard for the media to interact with the large audience. The media has also changed from the traditional means of relaying information and data to the modern methods like the use of social media and the internet. The changes in media have been necessitated by advances in technology.
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The reason why the media has embraced technology is because of the reliability, dependability, and the cost effectiveness associated with its application. On the other hand, the media has fully embraced technology from all dimensions, starting from marketing to branding.
The essay tries to explore the shift from Fordism to post Fordism with the objective of determining how changes in media and technology affect the relationship between brands and consumers. It also looks at the kind of consequences that could arise as a result of this interaction.
A brand is a term used in reference to a product, company, or service relative to the customers, investors, and staff, among others (Lury 2004, p.1). A good brand is supposed to display some psychological aspects like attitudes, beliefs, experiences, images, perceptions, thoughts, and feelings.
A brand is supposed to create an image or experience which is associated with the picture portrayed or the action perceived by the consumers. Through different media, it is possible to create the required impression associated with the service or product where certain characteristics or qualities are displayed making the brand unique.
Changes in technology and its effects on the relationships between a brand and consumers
Society has changed from Fordism to post Fordism. Although Fordism was characterized by mass production and mechanization, on the other hand, post Fordism has brought with it technology, information and innovation. Fordism is concerned more with the control of means of production and labor in space and time (Zwick & Knott 2009, p.221).
The shift to post-Fordism has enabled society to exploit the capability availed by the emerging technologies. For example, it is possible to exploit electronic surveillance and still keep track of consumers everywhere in order to satisfy the systems of post-Fordism production (Zwick & Knott 2009, p.237).
This allows companies to create a brand that closely relates to the demands of the consumer. This claim has been supported by Goss (2003, p.172) who notes that consumers’ details and information can be collected through surveillance and the observed consumer behavior.
The paradigm shift in technology and media has accelerated the rate at which brands interact with consumers across the different media channels (Powell 2011, p.1). This interaction has become more intimate because new technology has the capacity to bring about brand image or experience to the consumers’ platform. For example, through such media tools like phones, brands can easily be accessed and evaluated by consumers.
One of the causes of post Fordism was the emergence of new technology (Manovich 2000, p.62). Through the use of technology, the lives of consumers have been turned into raw materials (Zwick & Knott 2009, p.227). For instance, all the information concerning consumers can be collected and stored in a database where it is used to produce consumer presentations.
This allows for the production of information rather than physical goods thus supporting the ideal nature of post-Fordism. Post fordism is not interested much with mass production but rather, in the proliferation, improvement, and expansion of symbols and communication systems (Zwick & Knott 2009, p.227).
This is because mass production adds less value compared to the production of emotionally, intellectually, and communicative products that relay meaning to consumers. Therefore, the Post Fordism economy has allowed for the production of intangible commodities with values like patents, intelligence, and brands.
These commodities when incorporated with the information collected through electronic surveillance and stored in databases can be used to manipulate the relationship between a brand and the consumer. In other words, information technology has led to the production of knowledge intensive products that act as brands and interact well with consumers.
Technology also enables us to collect the data and information on consumers and store it for analysis. Some of the collected data on consumers include date of birth, location, age, working area, and the income of the consumers. One of the most applied technological tools is the geodemographics.
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Geodemographics is “an information technology that enables marketers to predict behavioral responses of consumers based on statistical models of identity and residential locations” (Goss 2003, p.171). This implies that the targeted consumers can be reached by the marketers based on the collected data and information with the aim of exploiting and uncovering new markets.
According to Goss (2003, p.171), the tool can be used to locate prospectus or potential customers who are selectively targeted using promotional materials.
This attracts consumers towards a particular brand where psychographic components are used to meet the expectations of the consumers. Through the geodemographics, it is possible to bring a brand near the selected or prospectus consumers. This promotes a closer relationship between the consumers and the brand.
By locating and analyzing consumers using GIS, we can then graphically represent consumer distribution based on their characteristics (Goss 2003, p.171). The information collected is also useful in identifying consumer types and segmenting them based on the psychographic and demographic data.
From these two types of data, marketers decide on how to present a brand and capture the targeted audience. The collected data is stored in a database in the form of consumer profiles. This allows marketers to use the information to directly address consumers’ interests.
The direct engagement of consumers allows for one- to -one communication which enables markets to communicate with consumers appropriately anytime they want and anywhere (Powell 2011, p.5). For example, through the use of phone to advertise products, a brand image that brings a closer relationship between the consumer and the brand is created.
Mobile phones connected to the World Wide Web or internet allows consumers to share information about a particular brand. For example, internet word of mouth (IWOM) is one of the online chatters in China that is incorporated around products and brands (Mackenzie n.d, p.3).
This helps consumers to share their experience on brands. Blogs, review sites, and other social sites have become influential in determining the purchasing habits of consumers. According to Mackenzie (n.d, p.3), consumers are taking control of their brands, the relationship and the purchases they make. This relationship has brought consumers closer to the brands to derive the experience they want.
The experience gotten makes consumers to appreciate the quality of the brands. Through the use of smartphones, the relationship between a brand and a consumer has become more streamlined, personal, and responsive.
The changing technology has led to the development of new forms of communication and interaction, which facilitates sharing of information. Digital media and internet invention has bought about both cultural and technological changes (Kinetic view 2011).
Currently, nearly everybody can easily access the internet. This technological growth has led to the emergence of the social media which is among the fastest growing platforms on the internet. A social media is basically an online tool used to disseminate and share perspectives, experiences, profiles, opinions, insights, and contents (Sheehen & Morrison, 2010, p.42-43).
Marketers have shifted their focus from the traditional tools of marketing and advertising and are now using social media. The preference for the social media is due to its capacity to reach a large population.
Using social media, the marketers are in a position of directly engaging the consumers (Sheehen & Morrison, 2010, p.42-43). For example, through the use of social media like Facebook and twitter (Sheehen & Morrison, 2010, p.43) marketers are able to share information regarding a particular brand.
The platform offered by social media allows different consumers to have a one- on- one communication with the brand. Through different followers on either Facebook or twitter, it is easy to share information about a commodity (Performics 2010).
Marketers and consumers can directly engage and discuss on the product where perspectives, attitudes, experiences, and opinions are shared (Hennig-Thurau et al. 2010, p.312). The shared information on the brand can be used for improvement or referring friends, family members, and workmates to use the product.
This mode of engagement connects consumers with the brand. Comments left behind on shared experiences are also (Hennig-Thurau et al. 2010, p.312) available and can be used to influence the relationship between a brand and consumer. For example, negative comments can push a brand away from the consumers while positive comments can pull the consumer towards the brand.
Social media gives brands a value through which information can be shared. Through the closer relationship, brands are deprived of control over how they will be received or conveyed (Anderson 2010, p.179). For example, a brand no longer communicates through a medium; instead the brand is able to send the message which is then used by consumers to derive the desired meaning (Performics 2010).
However, a brand may receive negative publicity from social media participants if it does not meet the expectations of the targeted population. For example, a brand may lose its publicity if it is wrongly presented in a social media (Hennig-Thurau et al. 2010, p.312). Unlike the traditional methods of passing the intended message of brand without criticism, social media allows criticism to be carried on.
For a brand to become acceptable to consumers in the social media, it has to portray emotions to capture the attention of consumers. The relationship between consumers and brands has shifted from the old strict consumerism to one which is livelier and allows for mutual participation (Performics 2010).
This has led to a closer relationship between the brand and consumers. The connection between the consumers and the brands has led to the satisfaction of the consumers. An online study carried by Performics (2010) found out that 90% of the face book users used in study were satisfied with how marketers are connecting with consumers and were demanding more from the markets (Performics 2010).
Social media networks like Facebook (Miller2011, p.4) and twitter allows for real-time communication and response (Hennig-Thurau et al. 2010, p.311). This has been necessitated by the emergence of technology which has changed communication between people.
The new media will allow consumers to participate in brand development. This is because marketers can use information from discussion blogs and comments in social networks. Brand and consumer building are enhanced thus encouraging the development of a relationship between the two.
The current change in technology has become more personalized and consumers are now moving around with personal technology. Personal technology has changed the interaction between consumers and a brand (Powell 2010, p.10).
For example, through the use of mobile phones, consumers can easily access a brand and even buy it. New technology has allowed pulling of the brand towards the consumers instead of marketers pushing it towards the consumers. This new phenomenon has ensured that consumers demand more of a brand if it has the appeal or emotional attachment.
The new technology also allows marketers to use information collected from consumers to design a brand that meets the interests of the consumers. Turow (2006, p.181) notes that the new media and technology has encouraged interactivity.
Consumers are being drawn towards the products in a way that the consumers will be in a position to evaluate and interrogate the products. This way, consumers will have an interactive relationship with brands that allows them to choose the products they want (Turow 2006, p.181).
The implication of this kind of relation is that consumers can be manipulated based on their needs, interests, and preferences to acquire certain brands based on the brand appeal.
According to Turow (2006, p.179), the emergence of new technology allows individuals to sign up to get the best services as customers. Using this information, companies and marketers are able to collectively find a niche where individual sharing certain qualities are regrouped and targeted.
Since the specifics of the individual are used to design and market a particular product, it is easy for the companies to create a strong relationship between the consumer and the brand. This leads to the creation of brand loyalty (The FS Forum 2011).
Brand loyalty ensures that the consumer becomes attached to a particular brand based on the satisfaction they get from that particular brand. Some of the portrayed aspects as a result of brand loyalty include behavioral and attitudinal loyalty (Jahangir, Parvez, Bhattacharjee & Ahamed 2009, p.23). This kind of relationship ensures that the consumer remains loyal to that particular brand because of the satisfaction he/she gets.
New technologies are creating platforms that allow “consumers to experience emotion-laden brand interactions” (Belk & Sherry 2007, p.416). With the perception of brands as objects, it possible for marketers to create brands that display emotions required to get the attention of the consumers.
Media like the modern TV has personalized the meaning attached to a brand which allows a closer interaction between the consumer and the brand (Belk & Sherry 2007, p.416).
This strengthens the relationship existing between the consumers, the brand, other consumers and the social network used to promote that brand. The empowerment of consumers by marketers using the latest technology has impacted on the way in which consumers perceive products.
Technology has led to the development of iPads, Smartphones, and iPhones, among other personal devices that can be used by consumers to interact with brands. For example, through the use of smartphones, consumers have become powerful through the information available via the smartphones.
The expectation of the consumers is that the brands that they buy and are loyal to will not only connect them but will also integrate them into a seamless brand experience (Mackenzie n.d, p.2). Because of this mutual relationship, they demand brand experience from anywhere and anyplace, regardless of the time.
In other words, change in technology has ensured that consumers stay in touch with their favorite brands all the time. The concept of internet connecting with regard to consumers has been supported by Zwick and Knott (2009, p.228) who acknowledge that an immediate relationship has been enhanced to consumers. This relationship gives the consumers the experience they need from a brand.
Changes in media and its effects on the relationships between a brand and consumers
Although there is no elaborate and specific definition of new media, it can be defined as the collective combination of the digital communication, information channels’, and websites from where consumers actively engage each other in real time regardless of the spatial configuration (Hennig-Thurau et al.2011, p.312).
The media has shifted from representation to presentation (Lash 2002, p.71). This means that the old media represented something but the new media it present everywhere, even at home, without being invited. The new media is persistent as it continues coming in real-time continuously.
Whereas the old media consisted of Photography, cinema, literature, recorded music, on the other hand, the new media is characterized by the use of computers to disseminate information to the different consumers (Manovich 2000, p.43). Examples of new media include computer games, DVD, CD-ROMs, computer multi media, websites and internet.
Manovich (2000, p.43) further opines that the new media also includes illustrations, photographs ads, layouts, and books which have been produced through the use of modern technology. Information contained in the new media is not prone to textual stagnation, but instead it is automated.
This means that it can be manipulated and interacted with. It is also easy to access the same information or brand but in different versions. This gives a form of interaction where choices are made from alternatives.
With the emergence of the new media, there has been a cultural shift towards a digital culture (Sheehen & Morrison, 2010, p.40). This new digital media has come to be called the convergence culture or the confluence culture where a new form of media emergences that allows creativity.
The new media is more interactive that the old media because advertising agencies have shifted to emergent media that is more holistic as it involves the consumer (Sheehen & Morrison, 2010, 40).
Because of the nature of the emergent media, there has been a pooling of what has come to be known as mass message. The traditional media failed to recognize the need for interactions and one-on- one engagement (Sheehen & Morrison, 2010, p.40) between the consumer and a brand.
The new media has brought about the pull technology like web based programs and TIVO which are more appropriate. According to Sheehen and Morrison (2010, p.41) the new media for advertising allows interactive creativity and engagement since it allows consumers to inherently create a relation between the consumer and the brands.
This is because it recognizes people as social beings who have feelings. This aspect has been transferred from the media to the emotionally built brands. The new media has based its functionality on engagement perspective whereby branding has changed from the transactional perspective to interactional perspective.
The transactional perspective addressed the transient need of a brand while the interactional perspective has incorporated the brand to become part of the person (Sheehen & Morrison, 2010, p.41). For example, the brand’s story has now become part of the consumers own story because of the engagement involved.
Other than the interactive and the engagement aspects of the new media characterized by a confluence culture, it also allows consumers to be part of it by telling their own stories (Sheehen & Morrison, 2010, p.43). Consumers can use the brands information and incorporate their own experiences and the transformation it has had on the consumer.
The ability to have collective intelligence, remediation, and participation enable consumers to be more interactive and get involved with the brands bringing out positive brand message (Sheehen & Morrison, 2010, p.43).
Because of the interactive aspect of the new media, it has the capacity to pull consumers towards the brand instead of the traditional push method. This has increased innovation and competition of brands as well as ensuring that closer relationship between the consumers and the brands.
New media allows for consumer entertainment, thus bringing a closer interaction and one on one communication and engagement. For example, the advergame is a kind of a game that revolves around a brand (Wise, Bolls, Kim, Venkataraman & Meyer 2010, p.27).
This form of marketing, targets a particular segment of people in the society who get connected closely through entertainment. The possibility of placing brand and brand communication in entertainment media like movies, television programs, and video games allows advertisers to bring the consumers near the brand.
This allows the deliverance of brands message content to the consumers in a more engaging manner than before (Wise et al. 2010, p.28).
The connection created between a brand and the content of a brand affects the persuasion mode of the consumers positively. The persuasive impact creates a strong link between the brand and the consumer, owing to personalized aspect.
Traditional media like the print newspaper, magazines and photography ten to limit the relationship between the consumer and the brand (Shaver 2007, p.30). This is because the information about the product where restricted to the media.
The new media like the internet allows the consumer to access as much as require information of brand and process it (Manovich 2000, p.42). For example, consumers can access information on automobiles and make a genuine choice before purchasing a product. This form of interaction between the consumer and the brand content binds the relationship between the two.
Consumers can make a choice in a particular brand by accessing and sharing information with a third party (Shaver 2007, p.30). Like the use of the word of mouth, the new media allows the dissemination and shearing of information among different consumers and a mutual relationship is ought to be developed.
Unlike the traditional media which offered time constrained relationship between the consumers and brands, the new technology has the capacity to ensure constant relationship between the two. This has been enhanced by the characteristics of new media like asynchronicity and demassification (Stafford et al. 2005, p.5).
Demassification means that the new media has the capability of allowing the consumer to have some control over the media. On the other hand, asynchronicity means that new media offers the platform from where content messages and information are send and received at the user’s convenient time (Stafford et al. 2005, p.5).
This had gotten rid of the traditional aspect of the traditional media where audience had to wait for information to be shared at the same time. For instance, consumers can now receive updates of a particular product at their convenient time through new media application like the use of the emails or social media. This necessitates a personal level relationship where the consumer receives the updates anytime and anywhere.
The way in which a brand communicates to the consumer has changed after the emergence of the new media (Meadows-klue 2007). For instance, it has transformed from face- to- face communication to face- to- profile communication (Lury 2004, p.132).
A brand is usually designed to make it visible to the consumer through a face of the interface. According to Manovich (2000, p.59), the new media has necessitated the communication of a brand through the new face (inter-face). Brand interactivity has ensured that the face of the brand communicates directly not to the face but to the profile of the consumer (Lury 2004, p.132).
Based on the post-Fordism theory, the economy has changed to one where the demand and the consumer have become profiled. This is to imply that the consumer is pulled towards a brand based on a created demand that fits the profile of the consumer. In other words, new media allows progressive profiling carried through iteration and successive adjustments of the demands of the consumer and their profile. The creation of a profile that communicates to the face of the consumers has made the interaction more closely than ever and so is the relationship.
The traditional media allowed for the consumption of products as a group (Manovich 2000, p.60). However, new media is more concerned on individual audience than the mass audience. This allows the individual consumer to interact with the brand at individual level in a language customized to meet the demands and the expectation of the consumer.
Unlike the traditional media like magazine ads, the new media like the web allows real time communication (Meadows-klue 2007). It also allows customization of the existing information to fit the profiles of the consumer. The new media makes the consumer realize that each individual is unique with demands and expectations that are totally different from the rest (Manovich 2000, p.61).
According to Lury (2004, p.129) the way people relate to objects has changed and people have become more attached to them than before. This has been supported by Manovich (2000, p.61) who note that new media use objects to assure the users the choices they have.
This assurance has been used to demonstrate that each individual (consumer) is unique and relates differently to a product. This is the opposite of the old media techniques that tended to compare users’ needs through preprogrammed product context messages.
Although there is acknowledgement that traditional media still applies in marketing and advertisement, the interactive media with its personal relationship, is poised to take over. Through the convergence of broadcast and digital technologies, we can now expect to witness advanced television for branding purposes (Schultz, Barnes, Schultz & Azzaro 2009, p.227).
The new media has such characteristics as time shifting, addressability, interactivity, and interoperability. By time shifting, it means that consumers using the new media will be in a position to control the content contained in the media. For example, through the use of devices like DVR devices it would be possible for consumers to have control over the content of a brand.
This will enable consumers be in a personal and closer relationship with the brands. The addressability aspect of the emergent media is that digital personalization will enable marketers to direct the specific messages to a specific segmented audience (Schultz et al. 2009, p.227).
It also implies that the targeted audience will have a choice to make of the kind of information they want. The interoperability of the new media implies that the consumers will be able to interact closely with the received messages content of brands across different media devices.
A perfect example for these changes of media on brands is the Apple iPhone which allows the consumers to download TV shows, movies, and music depending on their demand. The brand has been designed in such that the delivery systems encourage interaction between the brand and the consumers.
Unlike the traditional media, the new media allows information to flow freely to the consumers in an associative and adaptive nature. Based on the analysis of Sheehen and Morrison (2010, p.41), consumers are no longer interested in accessing and viewing the content of a brand. On the contrary, the consumers want to closely interact with the content where the consumers can use it for more than a single purpose.
Information on products is no longer constrained to a particular media like the TV but the information can be shared among different consumers and share opinions, perspectives and attitudes in regard to the product. This has been necessitated by the emergence of social media networks or platforms like the Facebook, You tube, twitter, and MySpace (Sheehen & Morrison, 2010, p.42).
Consumers share and interact with the information of brands strengthening the co-existing bond between the brand and the consumers. An example is CNN where consumers can freely use the CNN brand and incorporate it in T-shirts making which reaffirms the relationship between the two.
The changes in media and technology will have numerous consequences that may threaten the welfare of the consumers. Although the changes in technology and media have led to a paradigm shift in how branding is related to consumers, critics observe that there are consequences related to this shift.
The collection of the consumers’ details and information through surveillance interferes with people’s personal lives since the behavior of consumers in observed (Goss 2003, p.172). This leads to the control of the social life of people as it is always kept under surveillance and judgment is passed on. For instance, the use of the geodemographic systems exercises power on the people social life.
The collected data on the people (consumers) on the social life is collected and stored in databases for future. In most of the times, organizations and marketers collected consumers’ information like residential place, marriages certificates, driving licenses, and property transactions without the consent of the consumers.
The databases allows for the location and mapping of the collected information thus exercising control and power (Elmer 2004, p.4) over its owner. For example, it is only the marketing institutions and other brand related organization that can exercise power and control of databases.
Information technology has led to targeted tracking (Turow 2006, p.180). This means that the marketers and media firms can follow consumer marketing activities and learn what the interests of consumers are.
To some extent, this is spying on an individual’s social life without the consumers’ having any clue they are being followed and manipulated. Consumers have become objects that can be manipulated and bought as a result of new media and technology.
Data mining has become a common practice where the media firms and marketers go to the extent of purchasing consumers information (Turow 2006, p.181). This has made consumers more of tradable commodities that are competing with products in the market.
The ability of the new technology to collect the information of the consumers like place of residence, date of birth, and other information related to the consumer has left no place to hide (Goss 2003, p.176). This has led to complains by many groups in the society because people’s privacy rights are being violated.
The public has become aware of the threats that collection of personal information by marketing companies has to their privacy. Some of the past study as noted by Goss (2003, p.177) have indicated that there is a belief that the information stored in the company’s databases on consumers acts as a threat to the consumers privacy.
As time changes and technology and the media of communication changes, the more the privacy of the people is threatened. According to Goss (2003, p.177) personal privacy is threatened by information technology when beliefs and the behavior of individuals are unjustly or unnecessarily released to the public thus compromising the identity of that individual.
The information can be used by marketers in a way that the individuals may not be willing to have it used. In most surveys carried on consumer behaviors, no permission is taken from the consumers to have their information used for the enhancing the success of a brand.
Post Fordism is concerned more with the manipulation of consumers’ data and information to benefit their quest for making profits. This has led to the emergence of cybernetic capitalism that allows the control of the consumers’ social life either willingly or unwillingly.
The advancement in technology has led to software development which can be used by marketers for branding purposes. One of this software is the geomarket software that is used by marketers to locate the position of their consumers as well as the consumers’ results such as change in variables and choices (Goss 2003, p.178).
Through the use of the GIS it is easy to visualize data as well as communicating complex marketing relationships. The data collected can be aligned and digitalized to give the coordinates of the location of consumers.
Given that people with bad or malicious intentions come across such kind of information, they can manipulate it to suit their quest and desires. Technology allows some individuals manage the life of others (consumers).
Through surveillance of consumers, their social life is territorialized and managed. For example, databases contain information that is abstracted through technology and human beings are separated into massive flows (Zwick & Knott 2009, p.229).
This information is used to deterritorialize cultural, social, and economic relations by turning consumers into subjects. This kind of post fordism behaviour has been termed by Zwick and Knott (2009, p.229) as capitalism schizophrenic tendency since it dissolves all information on consumers. Information technology has thus turned consumers into digital assemblages that are used as consumer brands
Social media networks life Facebook, MySpace, and Twitter, among others, have the capacity of damaging the appeal and the experience of a brand (Hennig-Thurau et al. 2010, p.312). For instance, if a marketer wrongly presents a brand to its consumers in the social media, the brand could receive a bad publicity.
This could negatively affect the brand leading to low customer loyalty, low market share, and losses. The comments left in a discussion blog, websites, and other social networks remain for a long time at the site. Negative comments based on negative experiences can influence other consumers on the same.
Although new technology and media has brought about connectivity and mutual relationship between consumers and brands, this can easily damage it in seconds. This is because of the closer relationship and the platform availed by social media.
Database marketing which has been necessitated by new media and technology does not put into consideration the consumer ethical issues involved (Turow 2006, p.186). For example, the decisions made in grouping the consumers and targeting them because of their ‘special’ characteristics does not put into considerations the feeling of the people.
It cares about the capitalistic benefits of profit making at the expense of consumers behaviour and information. The ability to produce individual goods rather than mass production may lead to insecurity related forms.
For example, the consumers may become insecure in giving out their personal information on the fear that they will be regrouped to a particular market based on social and personal information (Turow 2006, p.187). In other occasions, the consumers may give wrong information so that they may be placed in a segment they deem appropriate to themselves.
Availability of personal information all over the internet may ruin an individual chance of getting employed. A bad comment on a brand or employer may cost a prospectus employee an opportunity of a lifetime. In this case, the data will have been used in a wrong way thus exercising power and control in the wrong way.
The new media and technology is displacing the old media like magazines and newspapers. This is because marketers are opting for the most accessible and cost effective means that can be used to reach consumers in real-time.
For example, marketers are shifting from the use of TV to application of social networks to communicate with possible consumers (Hennig-Thurau et al. 2010, p.311). This kind of shift has created a gap between the young and the old because of the digital divide. In other words an artificial discrimination is being developed in the market by the new technology.
In conclusion, new media and technology are slowly replacing the traditional means of communication. Marketers are now shifting their efforts to more reliable and accommodative means that can reach consumers anytime and at any place. Information technology has led to database marketing where information about consumers is collected, with or without their consent.
This information is used by marketers to determine the segments and the purchasing behavior of the consumers. The shift from fordism to post-fordism has led to information technology that uses electronic surveillance to collect information of the behavior and personal information which is used for consumer production.
Unlike the fordism that was characterized with mass production, post-fordism is characterized with production of knowledge intensive and emotionally attached brands that give consumers the experience they need.
The relationship between brands and consumers has been improved to become stronger than ever. Consumers can easily access brands using the current media and technology. This is because of the influence of social media that allows consumers to share information of a brand with friends. Some of the commonly used social media networks include Face book, Twitter, YouTube, and MySpace.
These can easily be accessed through phones, iPads, and Smartphones. This allows interactive and one on one communication in a seamless manner. This personalizes the relationship between the consumer and the brand.
Through the collected information, marketers are in a position to design brands that have the appeal and experience expected by consumers. This allows interactivity between the consumers and brands. However, the consumers are manipulated by marketers towards the brands.
The changes in media and technology have led to pull marketing rather that push marketing. This implies that, it has the capacity of pulling the consumer towards a particular brand because it has the qualities that consumers need to experience. The new media has led to consumer and brand engagement and interaction. It is characterized with confluence culture which allows storytelling on the experience of a brand.
Other than the effects that results from the new changes in media and technology, there are consequences that arise as well. For instance, the new technology has led to storage of personal and vital information of consumers with no consent. This information is used to design brands that fit the consumption and the purchasing behaviors of consumers and manipulate the consumers.
The storage of information is an invasion of human privacy rights as more personal details are collected by and stored. Also, consumers are worried as there is no place to hide because using GIS, people can be located and traced to their door steps. Other consequences include the threat of the extinction of the old media from like TV and news print. Social media exposes a lot of information to third party.
This information can be used maliciously to attack or ruin the personality of individuals. It has also led to violation of ethical and moral issues of marketing. Marketers are using the information without putting into consideration the feelings and the welfare of consumers.
Lastly, social media can ruin a brand if negative information is given on a brand as numerous people use the same information to evaluate the brand. This degrades and distances the relationship that exists between consumers and a brand.
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