Implementing company-managed virtual communities as a relationship marketing tool: a decision systems analysis

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Abstract:

Although many businesses are experimenting with virtual communities of consumers, there is little theoretical and practical guidance on how to develop and manage these groupings. In this framework, the objective of this article is to highlight the strategies implemented by today's businesses in order to create and manage virtual communities of consumers. Based on the analysis of a successful community implementation case, this paper highlights the role of the many players involved in the community building process and emphasises the importance of considering virtual communities as a marketing tool whose implementation needs the combination of strategic, socio-cultural and relational perspectives.

Keywords: CASE STUDY; CONSUMPTION COMMUNITY; RELATIONSHIP MARKETING; VIRTUAL COMMUNITY

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1362/147539209X414362

Publication date: March 1, 2009

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