As the editor of an online community with more than 10,000 members, I see at least 5-10 really good opportunities for marketers and advertisers on a daily basis. They unfold before my very eyes and sometimes seem too good to be true. The conversations take place in blogs, on individual profiles and even on the comments sections of news stories.

What I can’t really figure out though, is why these opportunities are being missed. The only thing I can think of is time. Maybe they don’t want to invest the time it takes to get involved in an online community even if it is filled with thousands of local folks who could bring lots of business to those who do it right.

Just today, someone mentioned that they were seriously contemplating Lasik eye surgery and asked for advice. It came in droves. Two businesses were mentioned by name and several individual doctors were recommended. There was mention of bad experiences and some chimed in saying they too had been considering the surgery and wanted to find someone with a good reputation and satisfied patients.

Can you imagine what would have happened had anyone from those offices gotten involved in this conversation, perhaps offering a special, a consultation, expertise or even tips on how to select a doctor?

I saw a potential gold mine and an opportunity to recruit customers who would spread the word and bring in even more referrals. The cost: Zero. Well the real cost is time. I guess that price is just too high for some.

A sad state of affairs indeed.
But I’m going to help change it. I don’t know exactly how, but it’s coming.
Stay tuned…..

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