The rise of the network-driven economy
In a post I published last week, I wrote about the game changers – the innovative individuals who are creating their own products and services, and placing them online.
Consumers that embrace social innovation and entrepreneurship are now taking the lead in determining what is interesting and what is not when it comes to the latest goods and services. This is creating an open marketplace that is changing the relation between established corporations, brands and consumers. This adjustment in the marketplace is being driven by three change agents:
- Individual production: individuals who are producing digital content are creating ideas, visions, and concepts for products and services by materializing these in small-scale projects, thereby highlighting the direction of the market.
- Consumer communities: the interaction in consumer communities is generating ideas and fantasies about what kind of products would be useful or fun to have.
- “Prosuming” practices: users who engage in prosuming practices are altering, remixing, and improving commercial products, visualizing the true market demand, rather than the expected demand.
Anything that can be digitalized is already in a state of change – newspapers, music, TV, movies, books, and so on. More and more, the demand for future product or service innovations is being created in the peer-to-peer network, which then attracts commercial producers who are willing to put the demand into large-scale production, rather than the other way around. As a result, the market is becoming network-driven rather than commercially driven.