One of the main points we made in The Cluetrain Manifesto, way back in 1999, was that the real revolution with the Net was not an increase in the power of supply, but an increase in the power of demand. Customers were no longer mere â€œconsumersâ€, and not only graced with far more choice â€“the power to pick and choose among vendorsâ€™ products and services. Thanks to the Net, and to features such as blogging, the demand side now had the power also to *supply*. This is whatâ€™s so disruptive.â€
This redistribution of power by enabling people to be widely heard is important. If you get about in your daily life and are able to connect, relate and interact with people easily you might just miss it and wonder what this is all about. You might see it only applying to buying and selling things – in terms of production and consumption. But to people who for varying reasons and circumstances find themselves socially isolated and find it difficult to connect, relate and interact in ‘traditional’ ways – the impact is more obvious.
Start inserting words into that quote like ‘agency‘ in place of ‘supply‘ and ‘client‘ instead of ‘consumer‘ and you change the context. The ‘service agencies’ can no longer act in a dictatorial style from ivory towers – disconnected – especially from those they are supplossedly ‘serving’. Blogs subvert heirarchies remember. Give the people a way and means to have their voice heard, to interact with others and you enable them to start influencing better ‘supply‘.
The demand side (client) has power to be an ‘agent‘ of supply for control of their lives. The power is redistributed. And rightly so!
It’s about relationship empowerment. Miracles, not just Markets.