Are you a Prosumer?

Well the last several weeks in Atlanta, for social media advocacy, have been truly landmark. The Atlanta Interactive Marketing Association (AiMA) hosted a great event on September 29, exploring both B-to-C (i.e., Chrysler corporation) and B-to-B social media marketing. And just this past week was #SMATL – Social Media Atlanta Week – great fun, myriad learning events and tweetups accross ATL. I was fortunate to attend most of Tuesday, seeing the likes of author Joseph Jaffe (Join the Conversation, and Flip the Funnel; and my AiMA Social SIG colleague Bianca Buckridee of SunTrust.

And in between it all I coordinated and moderated the inaugural AiMA Social Media SIG event on October 21 ( #aimasocial ); a lunch-n-learn panel on “Best Practices in the Big 3: Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.” The event was a smash – it sold out, with much positive response and attendees staying after up to an hour for Q&A (thanks so much to the SIG and speakers for helping out! and if you wish to see the slide deck go to ). This event was great study and preparation for me (as I plan to teach Georgia State University’s first Social Media Marketing course, in Spring 2011). During the lunch-n-learn I mentioned the importance of the role of the “prosumer” in social media today. Here’s a little more info on that term:

The term “prosumer” is attributed to futurist Alvin Toffler in his book The Third Wave (1980), where the traditional consumer would take on producer roles in commerce and society ( In the Web 2.0 world today “prosumer” can represent the masses and blog-writing, consumers entering crowd-sourcing creative contests for advertising, IT programmers writing open-source applications in their free time, or customers on designing their own sneaker for customized production and self-purchase. It’s the world where the consumer becomes the producer, where the customer takes the role of the professional. The prosumer has inexorably changed industries such as journalism, IT and marketing.

So this is a world and an economy where we’re still discovering what the prosumer means and how to grow commerce and industry around him and her. I hope to firm up some answers on this in my course next year.

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Jake Aull | Marketing Strategy | Social Media | Digital & Creative
email | @jakeaull |