Retailers Wrestling With How To Use Consumer-Generated Video (Excerpt)

[This is an excerpt from Evan Schuman’s StorefrontBacktalk, by Schuman, April 18, 2008. Link to the full article at]

“It’s very unlikely to have any value at all if it doesn’t change very often” or go deep enough, said Jason Meugniot, the CEO of Guidance, another interactive company. “If that happens, the value of the brand diminishes. They’re not seen as competitive. It just discredits them and diminishes the brand over time.”

If it’s done aggressively, though, Meugniot argued, “it’s not going to seem like a commercial. It’s going to maintain that credibility. It’s also allowing potential customers to browse and make purchases that they wouldn’t otherwise make.”

Even when that means helping drive an occasional sale to a rival? “There is greater credibility in an equal playing field,” Meugniot said.

Clearly, established retailers are not at all comfortable with taking a neutral approach to video annotation. But it’s also the path of least resistance in the market. Confronted with a tidal wave of user-generated videos, should a retailer ride that wave or try to push it in a different direction? Which is likely to have the better chance for success?

Click here for the full article.

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