If you're not sick of the (mis)use of that term by now, then you're probably not working with the Web much! So, I'll try to avoid the term, and go with what made the concept so wildly successful for so many companies like MySpace, Facebook, and the like.
Peppers and Rogers, a one-to-one marketing consulting organization, said it well:
"Today, marketing must focus on co-creating experiences that engage and entangle consumers – on their terms."
That is a powerful word to use about customers: entangle. But it really is what we want. Our brand should be so compelling that they just can't let go. They are constantly pulled back in because they feel so compelled. When they are entangled, they also tell all their friends. And remember, "friends" in the on-line world is many times more powerful than the off-line world!
The phrase "co-create" should also be a little unnerving. In higher education, why would you let that high school student or college freshman put information on your web site? Because it has to be on "their terms." They are coming to your web site to have their needs taken care of.
According to the Noel-Levitz E-Expectations study, those needs include:
- Campus Visit Request Form
- Engage (IM) with Admissions
- Email Current Students and Faculty
- Virtual Tours
- Profiles of Students and Faculty
- Financial Need Estimator
- Online Application
Those are just the basics - the entry price for playing. We all know about the Millennials and their need for entertainment, interaction, and social engagement. We also have to deal with their helicopter parents' needs as well. In the coming weeks we'll review each of these expectations as well as several other ideas to "engage and entangle."