A new marketing idea we've been hearing at recent conferences for the mutual fund industry is the notion of embracing new technologies, including blogging, instant messaging, chat rooms, webcasts, podcasts, websites tailored for each individual investor and even creating communities along the lines of facebook.com and YouTube.com.

There is no doubt that marketing and communications are moving into a new, personalized direction that will allow the mutual fund and other industries to communicate more creatively with individual customers as well as to create specialized, like-minded communities.

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