Superdistribution and Product Evangelism

Fred Wilson defines superdistribution as "turning every consumer into a distribution partner...every person who
buys a record, a movie, reads a newspaper, a book, every person who
buys a Sonos or a Vespa becomes a retailer of that item." He's right - it should be easy for us all to become product evangelists for everything we care about, and in turn receive compensation for it. This is strengthened by two reasons:

  1. We usually care passionately about the products we buy and use
  2. We tend to trust each other more than we trust anonymous reviews
Weaving in a compensation model to the recommendation model only makes sense. After I bought my first Sony Cybershot five years ago, I heavily recommended it to family members, leading to four quick purchases. When I made the switch to Canon's Powershot IS line, so did the many people who trust my research and recommendation. When I moved to subscription based music with Rhapsody and started obsessing over Yottamusic, five people I work with did the same. Now if I go out this week and buy a Sandisk Sansa or Toshiba Gigabeat to sync with my Rhapsody service, you can bet a few of the people I work with will too.

Look at it either way you want - I should be incentivised to continue recommending good products or rewarded for leading to sales. It won't blindly lead to bad recommendations because the trust factor will ultimately come into play after someone poorly recommends me something I had to drop $300 - $400 on.

This should be done for everything - vacation spots, concerts, and more.