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North Carolina-based Lowes Foods announced yesterday that it has developed, with, a social networking site for parents that serves as “a place they can organize, share, discuss, and find things to do with their kids.” According to the announcement, “differs from other parenting social networking sites by aggregating a full range of information and networking possibilities for parents, such as, advice, blogging, photo and video sharing and organizing, personalized homepages, and event listings.”
KC's View:
This reflects my long-held view that the real winners in the supermarket business will be the companies that are not just a source of product, but a resource for information. This is especially true for the next generation of consumers, which has grown up using social networking tools online, for which this kind of stuff will be second nature. Lowes and MyWebGrocer position themselves ideally to cater to this enormous demographic, and I think that is a very smart move.

By the way, in case you missed it, Wal-Mart announced last week that it’s getting into the social networking business as well, allowing consumers to post product reviews online.

It is all about building community, and positioning the retailer to be at the center of the community. It isn’t the kind of thing that you do once and ignore; rather, you have to work at it every day, developing new functions and connections. But I always think that it is the companies the create community that will be the ultimate winners.