Image Source: Plumcots.com

Tailored, customized and made-to-order, we’re a generation that doesn’t sit by idly waiting for innovation to take place. We take matters into our own hands. We make modifications to existing products and services in order to get exactly what we’re after.

You needn’t look much further than your local grocery aisles to see some unfamiliar fruits offering delicious results. Why have a plum when you can have a pluot (plum + apricot). How about a grapple (grape + apple) or a tangelo (tangerine + grapefruit)? This hybrid mindset is creating a mash-up society, customized to meet the consumer’s every whim. Why have a poodle or a golden retriever when you can purchase a golden doodle (boasting the best of both doggie breeds).

It was only a matter of time before the mash-up mentality kicked into high gear in the digital space. Business Model Cocktails, an initiative by a Belgium design office, believes that the strongest innovations are rarely new, rather blends of existing ideas. And their roster of recent cocktails is a clever mix of two business concepts:

Zappos is no stranger to customer service. When asked how they have grown so quickly, their answer is simple “We’ve aligned the entire organization around one mission: to provide the best customer service possible.” TweetWall is just another way that the shoe mavens are putting their customers first, offering product tweets as they happen.

What do you get when you take a pinch of Pinterest and a dash of Instagram? Well, Pingram of course. Italian web developer, Gennaro Varriale, took matters into his own hands when an exhaustive search for a way to pin his Instagram photos proved unsuccessful.

And social commerce site Bloom.com, claims to offer personalized, unbiased recommendations from real women on top beauty brands. One part e-Commerce the other social network, it’s a social beauty store fusing the best of Facebook and Match.com.

The music industry is all too familiar with the world of mash-ups, and the controversy that ensues. Are we heading towards a similar situation in the world of social media mash-ups where royalties should be paid out to the original source? Until then, go wild Girl Talk and keep the mash-ups coming.