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Marketing, customer satisfaction and loyalty
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Artificial intelligence: partner or substitute for the performing arts?
Mar20

Artificial intelligence: partner or substitute for the performing arts?

Many platforms already use artificial intelligence to make personalised recommendations to their users – such as Netflix, Spotify, or the start-up Le Styliste recently discussed on this blog. Today, however, AIs are no longer merely analysing and suggesting but are also used to create and assist in the creation of artistic content. After having dealt with the superiority of artificial intelligence over man in games, in this...

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Innovations in the postal sector. Episode 2: insurance services
Mar17

Innovations in the postal sector. Episode 2: insurance services

We continue today our series of innovative services in the postal sector (read here episode 1) with a very interesting initiative of French postal operator La Poste. Not sure this one will be successful as it faces already some resistance. Episode 2: insurance   Insurance services in the postal sector La Poste is about to test a new project with Polyexpert to equip postmen with smartphones so that they can photograph damages in...

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One Day One Idea: Lacoste co-creates with customers
Jan11

One Day One Idea: Lacoste co-creates with customers

The idea in a nutshell To celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Lacoste polo shirt by René Lacoste, the French brand (which was recently sold to a Swiss group) launched an initiative to co-create with its customers. It asked them to connect to a dedicated website (www.lacoste-future.com) to design the shirt of the future. To discover more about it, have a look a the movie which was created on this occasion.     Advice #1 for your...

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The co-creation concept is dead … Long live the co-creation concept
Aug24

The co-creation concept is dead … Long live the co-creation concept

When I wrote my first paper in 2009 about co-creation, I had already the feeling that it would quickly become a big thing, one of those topics that can capture the attention of the business world. The readers of this blog have been given the opportunity to follow the evolution of the co-creation concept and how it penetrated the business world. Although academics still debate over the ver definition of the co-creation concept (Vargo...

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MyStarbucksIdea: a great failure ?
Aug18

MyStarbucksIdea: a great failure ?

« Great » and « failure » may be two words you wouldn’t associate at first.  Yet, it’s the impression which I got whe I recently received the Starbucks newsletter proudly announcing that 150 ideas from the MyStarbucksIdea platform had been implemented. 150 ideas is a lot. Yet it is nothing compared to the 116100 ideas submitted (I summed them up on August, 12th). It’s actually a mere 0,129% of the grand total. If those ideas were...

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Ferrari thanks its suppliers
Aug11

Ferrari thanks its suppliers

I already mentioned on this blog the initiative of Solvay (through its subsidiary Solvin) to give awards to its best suppliers. On July, 28th Ferrari did the same and bought a full page advertisement space in the leading Italian economic newspaper Il Sole 24 Ore. The Modena-based company thanked its partners for their flexibility and their capacities to innovate. It is interesting to notice that this trend aiming at recognizing the...

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Carambar wants to co-create
Jul25

Carambar wants to co-create

After my post on Galak a few weeks ago, now it’s Carambar‘s turn to look for co-creation opportunities. I remain not convinced and here’s why. Carambar are categorized under sweets and are items which are typically purchased by habit. The purchase decision is made by the unconscious mind rather than by the conscious one. While trying to communicate with children with a message printed on a board at 2 meters (6 feet)...

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Open innovation initiatives fail
Jun01

Open innovation initiatives fail

One of EMAC 2011 participants (from the University of Amsterdam) presented yesterday some facts about platforms of open innovation like MyStarbucksidea and Dell’s Ideastorm. MyStarbucksIdea received some 74000+ suggestions out of which about 300 were actually converted. A mere 0.4%. You can wonder therefore what the value of such platforms really is. Well, I see some positive points: firms using such platforms actually do...

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An interesting showcase in Los Angeles
Mar23

An interesting showcase in Los Angeles

Sometimes I’m really wondering: “what is it that you guys want to communicate to your customers”? Take a step back and think about it for one moment. What is marketing really about? Selling products? Understanding customers’ needs? Nurturing the relationship with the customers? It’s all true but a paradigm shift took place in marketing and nowadays it’s more about “value creation...

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Cocreation lesson #5 : customer experience
Sep08

Cocreation lesson #5 : customer experience

My review of 40 years of literature has shown that the word “experience” is used by many authors to illustrate co-creation processes. Prahalad & Ramaswamy (2000) called for «personalized experiences with the customers». Vargo and Lusch (2004) suggest that «experience and perception are essential to value determination». Payne, Storbacka and Frow (2008) suggest that customer experience is one of the five possible co-creation...

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Co-creation lesson #4: the community effect
Aug31

Co-creation lesson #4: the community effect

The boundary is thin between customer participation, the ultimate stage of customer involvement, and the networked nature of co-creation. Whereas a community can co-create by itself, customer participation requires the involvement of the firm too. The benefits are however similar for the involved parties and were clearly identified by Payne et al. (2008, 2009): customer learning and organizational learning. The IT revolution has of...

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Co-creation lesson #3 : dialogue
Aug27

Co-creation lesson #3 : dialogue

The idea is of course not new and the importance of dialoguing with customers (and other stakeholders) is widely acknowledged (Ballantyne, 2004). Co-creation research makes extensive use of dialogue and different stages can be recognized which represent a steady evolution from the early 90’s until today. Whereas interactions were merely seen as a way to convey satisfaction, employee satisfaction and eventually increased loyalty in the...

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Co-creation lesson #2 : customization
Aug25

Co-creation lesson #2 : customization

A long time ago Henry Ford said that customers could order from him any Ford T as long as it was black. The automotive business has since then changed a lot and has recognized that customers want to be treated individually. This shift was supported by the new possibilities offered by automation and IT. Today the customer can co-create its car among thousands of combinations. In automated hotlines too the customer has to participate...

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Co-creation lesson #1
Aug23

Co-creation lesson #1

What is the common point between the Mercedes SLR Stirling Moss, the new fragrance launched by Unilever and a Raidlight backpack? All those innovations are the product of co-creation processes. Co-creation processes begin to attract the interest of big companies as suggests a recent article published in Business Week (Wong, 2010). Co-creation is however not a recent concept as our research will show. It is about 40 years old and has...

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Why do customers help firms ?
Jul05

Why do customers help firms ?

This is an interesting question which Stefan Engeser (Technical University of Munich) tried to answer. His research is certainly academic but nevertheless very promising for practitioners too. I’d like to express my gratitude to Stefan who allowed me to reproduce his presentation on my blog. Stefan participates in the Nanu project (www.nanu-projekt.de) which aims at involving customers in the process of creating sustainable...

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The dark side of cocreation
Jun23

The dark side of cocreation

During the EMAC2010 Johannes Gebauer (Innsbruck University, Austria) presented an interesting and quite unusual topic. Under the title « the dark side of co-creation » Johannes presented the results of a research carried out on the Spar business case. For those who don’t know Spar it’s a European group of proximity stores under franchising agreements. I thank Johannes who kindly accepted to put his slides at disposal to make them...

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Henry Ford and Cesar Ritz
Jun21

Henry Ford and Cesar Ritz

Is the customer always King as Cesar Ritz, the founder of the eponymous palace, once said? In other words, should we always obey customers wishes? Well, I’m not so sure about it. Remember what Henry Ford said «If I had asked to my clients what they needed they would have told me a faster horse». How should we interpret such opposed statements? At first sight they don’t seem to be to be incompatible. Both statements can be situated...

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