Smart companies have learned that often the best users of their products know as much or much more than their employees. Adobe is one such company. They are the creators of design and desktop publishing tools for communications and the company’s mission is to revolutionize how the world engages with ideas and information.
One of the ways in which they engage with their customers is to bookmark all the best Illustrator, Flash, Photoshop, etc. tutorials on Delicious. By doing so, they drive traffic from their 2,700 fans (and their networks) to those content creators while maintaining a master list of the best “how-to” information on their products.
This is a smart move on their part for many reasons that yield nice outcomes through conversation:
- higher engagement from and with peers
- greater customer satisfaction
- more learning opportunities for Adobe developers
- better product/market fit
I put this kind of example in the value creation category, which is the one that will create a sustainable business long term. In this case by involving the community of its users in the creation of content and thus value for each other as well as the company.