The Consumer is King: A Story About Co-Creation Featuring Albert Einstein

Today I have chosen lecturer, Albert Einstein, to assist me in explaining Co-creation.

So, what is co-creation?

“I must be willing to give up what I am in order to become what I will be.” 
– Albert Einstein

Co-creation is all about companies giving up control and letting others, whether they be customers, experts, or any stakeholder partake in the creation process of a product or brand image.

The reason co-creation is so important is because it allows for a conglomeration of diverse perspectives.  Sometimes you need to go outside of your own company to find a solution.

The knowledge inside of your business is limited and that’s okay.  You can’t expect a small population of people to have all the answers.  Listening to outside sources can create  a more valued product or service and involving others makes them feel invested, effectively creating a higher customer lifetime value.  People have always had opinions, but they haven’t always had the immense communication tool of the internet.  Now that their voices can be heard, they are shouting from the rooftops.

Here is a video about what co-creation entails:

“It is not that I’m so smart. But I stay with the questions much longer.”
― Albert Einstein

Co-creation doesn’t necessarily mean that you use someone’s help ONLY in the creation stage.  You also use it to collect feedback and constantly refine.

What’s so good about co-creation?

  1. It is cheap labor – you are effectively getting your consumers to work for you because they are invested in the outcome.
  2. It makes people like you more – with input from consumers about what they want, you can shape products or services to fit their needs more efficiently.
  3. It’s the fire that fuels your relationship to customers.

What are some risks of co-creation?

  1. Some people are stupid – sometimes it is hard to judge which ideas are great and which will be total wastes of time.
  2. It can make you lazy – you can’t always wait for a consumer to give you feedback about your product or service, more often than not you need to be proactive.
  3. You lose control – it may be the case that co-creation makes planning strategies MORE complicated when you have “too many cooks in the kitchen.”

In the end – Co-creation means that companies no longer have full control over the shaping of a brand.  There is a balance that needs to be found between what companies and consumers want. Through the internet, consumers have found a voice.  Through necessity, companies have started to listen.

***DISCLAIMER FROM MR. EINSTEIN***

AE

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