RALLY COMMUNITIES TO BUILD YOUR BRAND Customers can be your best evangelists, so don"e;t limit yourself to broadcasting marketingmessages from the media housetops. Jones Soda, for instance, engages customers through music- and photo-sharing sites, building loyal and vocal communities. With no traditional advertising, Jones has grown from a Seattle fave to a $33 million national beverage business.
TAP THE WISDOM OF CROWDS Why do all the work yourself? Viewers, listeners, and readers are smart— often smarter than your own employees—so let them improve your products and services. The New York Times is redesigning its site to harness readers"e; searches, blog posts, and movie ratings to rate and filter the vast Web wasteland. Even its initial efforts helped traffic jump 12%.
HIRE THE AD GEEKS Don"e;t try to guess which search words will bring in the most buyers. Instead, bring in the experts: search-engine optimization firms. One outfit, Efficient Frontier, uses Wall Street portfolio management techniques to help Lending Tree, Build Direct Technologies, and others improve click-through rates on search ads by an average of 30%.
EXPLODE YOUR BRANDForget about trying to create loyalty to a network. Viewers, readers, and customers today care only about a particular show—but then they want to immerse themselves in it. The SciFi cable channel offers podcasts, behind-the-scenes video blogs, and remixable video downloads tied to Battlestar Galactica. The show"e;s audio podcast alone has been downloaded 4 million times.

Fighting Attention Deficit

New strategies for engaging customers on the Net:

By Susan Berfield
It's not just that media is splintering, as it has been for decades. The difference now is that the Internet is thrusting that trend into overdrive. Here are some tips from companies that are making the Web work for them:

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