Co-creation as a Marketing Tool: Innovating with the Best Ideas

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From the collaborative economy to collaborative innovation. From thinking about what the customer will want to involving them and working together to achieve it. From the age-old «together we are stronger and better» to Co-creation, an increasingly implemented business strategy that, focusing on people, helps companies innovate. This is the spirit of Co-creation, a practice in which companies involve their customers and their opinions in the company’s innovation processes under the premise of ‘win-win’: brands launch products to the market that are ‘pre-accepted’ by end-users, and the customer feels that their opinion has been valued by the brand.

In this process, We are testers acts as a link, as a generator and channeler of all those insights coming from all the company’s stakeholders, whether they are users, customers, or employees, offering its market research tool.

Examples of Co-creation Campaigns

Some well-established brands in the market have been using this type of campaign for years for the launch of new products or to create new brand experiences. This is the case of Oreo, which launched a campaign to ask its fans about the new cookie flavor they would like to buy, or Nivea, which created the Black&White deodorant in collaboration with its customers. After a process of active listening on social media about the problems represented by deodorants, it started a process to solve these problems by inviting customers to co-create the new product alongside the brand’s professionals.
On the other hand, Nike gives its customers the possibility to choose a customized product according to their tastes through the website, creating sneakers with the colors or text that the user decides.

Another example of co-creation is Starbucks, which launched an online co-creation platform called ‘My Starbucks Idea‘. The goal of the campaign was to collect ideas from its own customers and consumers to implement them and improve its products, stores, decoration, customer experience, or to let imagination run wild and propose new concepts. If customers are the ones who know best what they want and expect from the brand, why not ask them directly?

This strategy is not only valid for large brands established in the market; it is also possible to develop co-creation in smaller settings. For example, imagine you are a marketing expert entrepreneur who wants to create your own infoproduct. The co-creation process also starts by asking your ‘customers,’ i.e., subscribers or regular users of your services, about what they would like to receive, their needs, the type of content, etc. It is equally applicable to startups or small businesses.

Are you considering why and how to implement a co-creation strategy? Then this is for you.

Why Implement a Co-creation Strategy

One of the main goals of co-creation is to create brand experiences, generate different companies with a human, real, and innovative touch, far from the ‘rigidity’ that not looking out the window of your own office can sometimes entail.
This new form of ‘collaborative innovation,’ a close relative of the collaborative economy that has yielded such good results in various business sectors, brings benefits to brands from both a business and positioning perspective, as well as in terms of innovation and communication. To be more specific, its implementation is vital to:

  • Generate innovative ideas: promoting the creative thinking of your customers leads to fresh, disruptive ideas that differ from those of the organization’s members. Not only that, but they are better suited and respond more effectively to the real needs of the end-user, as they are the ones who help generate them.
  • Apply valuable internal ideas: giving company employees the opportunity to contribute their vision and opinions. This strategy, in addition to being beneficial for the result itself, generates greater engagement between the company and its employees and promotes an internal culture of innovation.
  • Improve the relationship with the end user/customer: presenting oneself as a more approachable company that takes their opinions into account reinforces the bond with the customer and can also lead to increased satisfaction with the brand. At this point, it is necessary to highlight that co-creation requires a mandatory process of transparent, two-way communication, in which both parties benefit from their collaboration.
  • Imagine new business models or products: being able to test among potential consumers different prototypes of products or services before their commercialization can promote the development of the product lifecycle, identify improvement opportunities to make it more attractive, eliminate options that seem to not fit, or meet consumer needs. The result? Reducing the margin of error, for example, in the launch of a product or campaign. In this regard, some of the tools that may be useful for conducting this fieldwork are concept testing or product testing. Likewise, thanks to this practice, it is possible to anticipate trends that provide learning for future developments.
  • Develop new ways of working, more agile, faster, and participatory: with the right tools, challenges and problems can be solved almost in real-time thanks to the continuous feedback received through interaction with a real community of potential consumers. A clear example of this is advertising pretesting: Which logo will be more popular? Which of these four creatives best reflects my message?

How to Start Co-creating Your Brand

Co-creation can be developed as a one-time strategy to address specific needs or problems or be a regular practice in the company. Regardless of this, when implementing this methodology, it is vital to establish the main objective of the co-creation exercise from the very beginning, whether it is to create a product, service, or experience, or to address a challenge or problem. If the goal is clear for all parties from the outset, the chances of success in generating a tangible idea that can be carried out increase.

We Assist You in the Co-creation Process

Thanks to our market research tool, you can interact with one or more of your stakeholders, such as customers, employees, or suppliers, to gather their opinions and work together to achieve the set goal, whether it’s creating new products, services, or solutions.
With the different tests and methodologies we have available, you can ask the general public within a community of thousands of consumers or a specific target (thanks to the available segmentation criteria) about the problems, concerns, doubts, or interests you want to address. With this, you can build customer loyalty, attract new customers, and increase engagement with your brand by making them feel a part of it. Isn’t this what all companies ultimately seek?

Shall we talk? Contact us through our contact form, and we will help you implement a co-creation and internal innovation strategy with our market research tools.

 

Update date 22 December, 2023

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