巧克力新樂園
by Nadia Chung

A virtual community shares passion for customized Swiss chocolate. 
在『我的瑞士巧克力』虛擬社群裡,網友彼此分享對客製化巧克力的愛好。
   Since Switzerland began developing a mass market for this tasty confection in the 1800s, chocolate has become highly popular and easily available in a variety of flavors almost anywhere in the world. For people eager to express their individuality , however, store-bought chocolate might seem to lack fruits, nuts, a little spice, or even gold flakes. 
打從 19 世紀,瑞士開始發展出巧克力的大眾消費市場後,這種美味甜食便大受歡迎,而且幾乎在全世界任何地方都很容易買到各種口味的巧克力。不過對於渴望展現自我風格的人來說,在商店裡買的巧克力可能就看不到水果、堅果、少許辛香料,或甚至是金箔。
 Sensing a growing
appreciation of individualized goods, Swiss-born Internet start-up veterans, Sven Beichler and Christian Philippi, decided to tap into the niche market for high-qualitycustomized products. They were specifically aiming for something that would express their "Swissness" and put their Internet savvy to good use. Since Swiss cheese, knives, and watches were not easy to produce, they decided on chocolate and createdwww.mySwissChocolate.ch. This website allows customers to tailor chocolate bars according to their own tastes, with 200 million possible combinations using premium ingredients including curry powder, rose petals, and real gold flakes. One unusual concoction had white chocolate mixed with sea salt, jelly babies, and caraway.   What the founders lacked in marketing resources, they made up for in the virtual community they created. The website is a unique online community where customers can earn points and vouchers exchangeable for real chocolate when they invite friends to join the club. "If you have enough friends, you can eat chocolate for free for the rest of your life," Beichler boasted. 
  出生於瑞士的網路創辦老手,貝奇勒和菲利普察覺出個人化商品逐漸受到民眾青睞,於是決定打入這個利基市場,開發高品質的客製化產品。他們特別針對能夠表現瑞士精神的東西,並希望能善加利用他們的網路本領加以推展。由於瑞士起司、瑞士刀和手錶均不易製造,所以他們選定巧克力作為商品,並建立了『我的瑞士巧克力』這個網站。這個網站讓顧客根據自己的口味,從兩億種可能組合中,嚴選優質食材製作巧克力棒,這些食材包括咖哩粉、玫瑰花瓣和金箔等。有一種與眾不同的組合是在白巧克力中,混入海鹽、娃娃形狀的軟糖及葛縷子。網站創辦人用自創的虛擬社群來彌補行銷資源的不足。這個網站是個獨特的線上社群,當顧客邀請朋友加入該社群時,他們就能得到可兌換真巧克力的點數和禮券。貝奇勒誇口說:『假如你的朋友夠多,往後你就能一直享用免費的巧克力。』  
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