By Michael R. Solomon

This booklet - "Conquering Consumerspace" - is one other in a contemporary and doubtless never-ending movement of tomes that attempts to persuade us how the shopper is in whole keep an eye on of the buying strategy and wishes to be engaged in a collaborative version. Message bought. besides the fact that, the saving grace for this identify is that its writer, Michael Solomon, is the director of Mind/Share Inc., a consulting enterprise focusing on on-line patron study. The quantified insights he bargains, which were generated from his corporation, are really fascinating and make this paintings a standout from the blasé books of others.

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Memes ‘‘leap’’ from brain to brain in a process of imitation. The memes that survive tend to be distinctive and memorable, and the hardiest ones often combine aspects of prior memes. For example, the Star Wars movies evoked memes relating to Arthurian legend, religion, heroic youth, and 1930s adventure serials. ’’12 The new science of memetics, which tries to explain how beliefs gain acceptance and predict their progress, was spurred by Richard Dawkins, who in the 1970s proposed culture as a Darwinian struggle among ‘‘memes’’ or mind viruses.

In reality, though, many contemporary consumer activities are ritualistic. The regimen of brushing one’s hair for 100 strokes every morning, hitting Starbucks for that obligatory midmorning buzz, or decompressing in a hot bath accompanied by Mozart and white wine all qualify as ritual behaviors. Though they may not think in these terms, many businesses owe their existence to rituals—and to consumers’ needs for the artifacts required to perform them. , wedding cakes, ceremonial wine, or even hot dogs at the ballpark), trophies and plaques, band uniforms, and greeting cards.

Participatory marketing strategies accelerate consumers’ involvement in the marketplace by encouraging customers to join in with producers to create and consume the products they buy. A few years ago, the director of strategic planning at Saatchi & Saatchi New York predicted, ‘‘. . any space you can take in visually, anything you hear in the future will be branded, I believe. It’s not going to be the Washington Monument. ’’27 In the chapters to come, we’ll see that she was probably right. Welcome to consumerspace.

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