Vintage-inspired fashion retailer ModCloth has been getting some great press recently (Inc., NY Times), not just for its unique lineup but also the way it uses social media to create customers and engage them over time.

Google Hangout with customer Neyla Pekarek of the Lumineers? Cool.

ModCloth understands where product, culture, passion and technology intersect – notably, it’s various customer engagement programs, such as “Be The Buyer”, “Make the Cut” and the “Style Gallery”. Each enables customers to actively interact with the product, whether or not they are a buyer right then – adding value at every stage.

Experiential marketers have long understood this model; whether it’s a cloud computing system or a new kind of yogurt, today it’s necessary to set up mechanisms of engagement around the brand to add value all along the path to purchase…and beyond.