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The woman next to you in the coffee shop, typing madly on her laptop, just might be determining the ending to next year's block-buster film or how quickly the hottest new PDA hits store shelves. In homes, dorm rooms, waiting rooms, planes and trains around the world, millions of people are exercising enormous influence on what we buy, even though they have no official connection to those products and services. Who are they? What motivates them? Marketing experts Jackie Huba and Ben McConnell explore the ramifications of social media in Citizen Marketers. As everyday people increasingly create content on behalf of companies, brands or products, they are collaborating with others just like themselves and forming ever-growing communities of enthusiasts and evangelists. From the rough to the sophisticated, the "user-generated media" of blogs, online bulletin boards, podcasts, photos, songs, and animations are influencing companies' customer relationships, product design, and marketing campaigns, whether they participate willingly or not.