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Avatars are taking over the consumer world!

Even the Future Shop is playing in the social media space now!  And they have created Aaron (for English speakers) and Alex (for French speakers) to guide customers through and beyond the purchase. The Future shop Avatars (tech speak for online characters) are experts in electronics and other gadgets and are available 24 hours a day/7 days a week to assist customers and answer questions.  The site also offers a community forum to read posts from other users asking questions about Future Shop products. 
 

The  Future Shop forum is organized around popular topics and products, and allows users to answer questions from other users.  How fun!  Users of the site are invited to “ask Aaron” about how to use the site features – like a tutorial on how to use the forum.  Aaron looks like he might be quite a physically fit Avatar, looks dapper in his future shop uniform, but seems kind of bored while he waits for someone to ask him a question.  You can even send Aaron on a break – check it out – it is really funny!  As we speak – someone just gave Aaron Chinese food!  This user must have thought he looked bored too!
 

Online community forums are quickly becoming the resource for consumers who are looking for information from other consumers – and not just the advertising message. 
Interesting that Future shop choose two male Avatars to live within this site.  I think they need a Chick Avatar too!  

[tags]social media marketing, sem, social communities, future shop, online research, online forums, internet marketing, online consumer tools, online advertising, web 2.0[/tags]

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