Supply Chain Collaboration could be compared with Co-creation?

The collaboration in the Supply Chain Management system could be compared with Co-creation. Both “systems” are depending on the collaboration with customer, competitors or suppliers. But why collaboration?

Why do we need to collaborate in the supply chain? That’s a question some companies need to ask themselves to get the highest efficiency out of the supply chain management. Organisations have for many years strived to improve the efficiency of their internal supply chain activities e.g. purchasing, manufacturing and logistics (Ellinger, 2002; Fawcett and Magnan, 2002). On a more fundamental level, in respect of internal collaboration, some authors would suggest that very few organisations have achieved internal integration of their activities (Fawcett and Magnan, 2002).

When this is combined with isolated forecasting and planning the organization is facing an uphill battle just to stand still. In the meantime competing supply chains that manage through collaboration to integrate supply and demand, deliver significantly improved performance, and benefit yet further form closer relationship that themselves foster more opportunities for greater improvement.

Collaboration in the supply chain

There are variety of forms of potential supply chain collaboration, which can be divided into two main categories (see Figure 1) both horizontal and vertical. In the article of Mark Barratt ‘Understanding the meaning of collaboration in the supply chain’ (published in 2004) these topics are explained with theoretical explanation and practical examples.

Pim Steine

Crowdsourcing, the future of the big firms

A couple of posts ago, Dimitris raised the question if there were any more examples of crowdsourcing. Mostly because the examples he gave where small initiatives. The fortune 500 firms didn’t really embraced the idea of crowdsourcing on a large prominent scale.

I found some examples of two different companies that use the idea of crowdsourcing.

The first example is Walmart. They are using the crowdsourcing idea to raise the idea for small product designers to get their products on the shelf.

The second example is the AOL website. They had a problem with the quality content of the site so they stated that they wanted to use cheap labor to help them maintaining their quality. AOL asked crowd workers to determine whether Web pages contained a video and to identify both its source and location on the page. This would saveup time and money.

The article also stated the financial benefits for companies to use crowdsourcing.

I am convinced that crowdsourcing is the future! It is the new co-creation model. Users/ consumers generate value, they get paid and get a high customer involvement with the company.

Shrikesh Sheorajpanday

Jailtime for Pirate Bay founders

The following part is taken from:

Pirate Bay’s Peter Sunde, speaking on his website: ‘We cannot and wouldn’t pay’. A court in Sweden has jailed four men behind The Pirate Bay (TPB), the world’s most high-profile file-sharing website, in a landmark case. Frederik Neij, Gottfrid Svartholm Warg, Carl Lundstrom and Peter Sunde were found guilty of breaking copyright law and were sentenced to a year in jail. They were also ordered to pay $4.5m (£3m) in damages. Record companies welcomed the verdict but the men are to appeal and Sunde said they would refuse to pay the fine. Speaking at an online press conference, he described the verdict as “bizarre”. “It’s serious to actually be found guilty and get jail time. It’s really serious. And that’s a bit weird,” Sunde said. “It’s so bizarre that we were convicted at all and it’s even more bizarre that we were [convicted] as a team. The court said we were organised. I can’t get Gottfrid out of bed in the morning. If you’re going to convict us, convict us of disorganised crime.

Continue reading Jailtime for Pirate Bay founders

Hackers hired by Lego

When Lego discovered  that one of the new development tools for digital designing had been hacked, they hired the hackers. Instead of punishing the hackers, Lego wanted to use their kwoledge and insights to improve and develop Lego’s products.

The hackers of Lego were lead users, with a lot of knowledge and expertise about the Lego products. The hackers were able to improve Lego’s products in a way that the own designers of Lego did not think of. By using the knowledge and expertise of the hackers, Lego was not only able to improve/design products with their insights, but also to build strong relationships with the lead users.

One of the problems of using consumers knowlegde in order to innovate and design new products, is that their information is sticky and hard to transfer in solutions for (new) products. The Lego hackers have problem-solving capabilities that can be used in practice.

Lego did a good job by using the hackers in the development of the digital designing tool.

Naoual Aouaki

Mass Customization in Tea?

We have discussed mass customization several times in class and there have been given very good examples of companies who use mass customization.

Personalization of products and services nowadays is a very common trend that we see. Famous examples are the Nike sneakers, with your own name stitched and building your own Lego products. This trend is now also reflected in the world of food and drink. “Blends for Friends” is an example of customizing your own tea.

In Blends for Friends you can create your own personalized tea just the way you want it. Not only do you get your own favourite taste but they also look at your own personalized characteristics. Therefore they ask you to describe your hobbies and interests, nicknames, physical appearance and special anecdotes. Based on these answers they will create for you a own personalized flavour that matches exactly your personality.

Not only can you buy tea flavours but also some other accessories to complete the tea experience. In this way the company really looks at the customer wants and needs and gives you the perfect product that they can produce. A good example of mass customization.

Shayan Khan

Customer Loyalty, the eight ingredients

Hi everyone,

I found an interesting (short) article about the (eight) ingredients to build customer loyalty.
Of course as we have read in the article of Werner Reinarts and V.Kumar (the mismanagement of customer loyalty), customer loyalty does not always means (customer) profitability. However building customer loyalty is very important for a company, especially if you want them to become ‘true friends’.

Next you can find eight essential ingredients according to R.Paul and D.Timm to build customer loyalty.

Continue reading Customer Loyalty, the eight ingredients

Eight realms of the multiverse

Dimitris already told us about the characteristics of experiences. You can divide an experience in two dimensions; participation and connection. Participation can be split in active and passive, and connection in immersion and absorption.

I find some additional information on this, Joseph Pine introduced the multiverse. This is a tool to gain insight about how we can use digital technology to create new en wonderous experiences that fuse together the real and virtual.

Reality is a trinity of time, space and matter. But there’s also a virtual based size, with no matter, no space and no time. Matter is about atoms, if there’s no atom it’s about bits. Space is about the real places we inhabit, but there’s also no space; the virtual world we explore.
Then we have time; the actual time that unspools in front of us. And you can have no time, it’s autonomous from the actual time.

We have time and no time, space and no space, and matter and no matter. This defines the eight different realms of the multiverse, it’s a more extensive model than the model we saw in class.

There are many examples to explain each realm, but I think this video provides good examples, it also summarizes the theory I discussed above.


Did you know about Pinterest??

Since we have discussed so much about social media I thought you may be interested in learning some things about Pinterest, a brand new idea in the field of social media.

Pinterest is more like Flickr or Tumblr and not so much as Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter.

I suggest you should read the article below to get a clear idea of what exactly is Pinterest and why not request an invite at!

What I found most interesting about this new media is that only after less than two years in business, Pinterest is already one of the most popular social networks in the world, as measured by engagement (according to data from comScore).

As you can see, it is ranked just below Facebook and Tumblr as the most popular site to hang out on.
Hope you find it interesting!

Fay Panagopoulou


Involvement of fans or consumers – part 2:

As Boudewijn Tilman pointed out in his post: Involvement of fans or consumers, the involvement of fans in a football club can be enormous. He pointed out two examples: FC United of Manchester and a Mexican squad in which the fans decide about the starting eleven. These examples turned out to be a pretty good success.

But I want to point out another example: This example goes beyond letting the fans decide about who plays and who are on the bench. Actually “” gives his consumers the chance to become the owners of the club which is called: Ebbsfleet United for only 35 pounds.

This whole club is in the hands of their fans. All the major club functions are in the hands of their fans and all the members/fans worldwide get their votes in transfers, the starting eleven and also in deciding about the future of the club.

In the first year the club got over 32,000 members (which is I think pretty much for a 5th division team in England). But they ended up with only 3,500 members in september 2010, while the club previously stated that 15,000 members was the minimum required.

On December 23 2011, it was announced that the club needed to raise £50,000 by the end of the 2011/12 season or risk going out of business.

So what you can see is that involvement in sports can be a good thing, in the case of the Mexican team but it can also turn out into an disaster like the example above.

I think that it is too much yet to let your consumers or your fans fully decide about all the major business decisions. But I do still think that it was a cool idea which was really out of the box thinking when they started it in 2007.

Via this link you can see a short BBC documentary about the idea: 

Erwin Westveer

Lay’s makes the taste

Everyone who is ever been to a supermarket will have seen the famous potato chips brand  Lay’s. The brand is marketed as a division of Frito-Lay, who is a company owned by PepsiCo.

Lay’s sells different kind of chips in every country depending on their culture and food taste. They also try to make it ‘healthier’ by baking it in sunseed oil and using less salt, because nowadays a lot of consumers are paying attention what they consume.

Lay’s also try to involve to consumer in the process of creating. Last year they introduce a competition between consumers to create a new flavour for Lay’s potato chips. The winner gets a price of 25.000 Euro and 1% of the sales turnover. The winner of 2011 was the ‘patatje joppie’ in the Netherlands. The battle for a new taste and winning the big price started again this year.

The battle is divided in different rounds. First of all, you need to think of a new unique taste with a catchy name and convince the jury why your taste would sell the best. Secondly all created forms of taste are going to battle with eachother and the people in Holland are going to choose the taste which they like. In the thirth round, will the jury pick the best 8 tastes and after that, the all the people can vote for there 2 finalist. The last step is choosing the winner!

It sounds maybe complicated, but what they really trying to do is to find the taste that will sell the best according the people in the Netherlands.



What customers want!

Last monday we had a very interesting guest-lecture from Irene van den Brink, from VODW. In her presentation she showed us how VODW creates ideas for companies or specific products. It seems to me very difficult to start with such a new idea. Because, how can you find out what a customer wants?

Irene van den Brink explains to us how difficult this can be, but more important  in which way you can try it. It can be complex, especially for marketeers I think, because we cannot switch of our knowledge. We cannot see ourselves as representative consumers any more. That makes it more difficult to imagine what costumers think of advertisements for instance. And this is a key factor for successful marketing for a company. Especially because the value of a product is perceived and determined by the consumer, not by the firm (slides session 10). Of course we know how to use marketing research, but will this bring a representative outcome in each case? Or is this almost impossible, since customers are more and more interested in transparent companies and increase their knowledge about marketing.

In this way we also talked about how Apple, especially Steve Jobs, uses marketing. Are they making special and good products, without research and sell it directly to the customers? Or do they know exactly what customers want by extensive marketing research? In any case, a company like Apple will have to be creative, innovative and different!

Steve Jobs about what customers want (is it megabytes, megahertz, or is it expression):

Steve Jobs about what customers want

A funny ad about what customers want:

What customers want

Radiohead’s pay-what-you-want experiment

It was some years ago, but still people are talking about it. The band Radiohead decided to use the online channel in their own advantage, instead of considering it their enemy in the form of illegal online downloading. Dimitris used this example in class, illustrating how business (or bands) can use the new channels to their benefit. I was curious what the end result of this experiment was. The following article answers that question:

Radiohead’s “In Rainbows” Experiment was a Success

CNN/Fortune hated the idea so much that they listed it in their 101 Dumbest Moments in Business article. In 2007, Radiohead made their album In Rainbows available for download before physical copies were available in stores. You could choose to simply download the album or voluntary pay an amount of your choice. Radiohead didn’t reveal any statistics related to the download; the known data comes from comScore, who reported that:

  • 62% of the downloaders chose to pay nothing
  • The remaining 38% voluntarily paid an average of $6 for the album

Based on these numbers and Radiohead’s silence, the CNN/Fortune article inlcuded the sneering line “Can’t wait for the follow-up album, In Debt.”

It turns out that Radiohead’s experiment was actually a success. Techdirt points to a report onMusic Ally that says that Radiohead’s publisher Warner Chappell will tell all about the In Rainbows experiment at the “You are in Control” music conference now taking place in Iceland.

The “success” of which they speak isn’t the hand-wavy “artistic”, “critical” or “proving a point” kind, but the sort of success that bottom-line thinkers like: In Rainbows made more money beforethe the album was physically released than the total sales for the previous album, Hail to the Thief. Even when preceded by a free or “pay what you can” downloads, In Rainbows has still sold 1.75 million copies of the CD to date, and it’s still in the top 200 selling CDs in the U.S. and U.K..

The Music Ally article has more details and includes these statistics:

  • After being made available online for free for 3 months, In Rainbows hit number one on both U.S. and U.K. charts.
  • 30,000 copies were sold on iTunes in its first week.
  • 1.75 million CDs of the album have been sold since its release.
  • 100,000 box sets have been sold through Radiohead’s sales and merchandising site,W.A.S.T.E..
  • 17 million plays on
  • 1.2 million fans will see their tour.
  • The digital income from the experiment made a material difference to Warner Chappell Music’s UK digital revenue this year.

What is a Customer Experience?

CustVox, a powerhouse of customer intelligence, has been the driving force behind the adoption of Customer Experience Management (CEM) by many international corporations, delivering actionable business insights that add significant value to their business. Custvox created a video where they answer the question: “What is a customer experience?” They try to explain the importance of the customer experience. They state that “a CEO can lose up to 40% of its customers in one year, and nowadays more than ever it is important to retain existing clients while adopting a customer centric culture.” They give an example of the customer experience management.

In my understanding Nespresso managed to perfectly prove how commodities such as coffee beans transferred into memorable experience. “The ultimate coffee experience positioning inspired an identity that expresses the pursuit of perfection and the masculine and feminine characters of coffee.” The elegant and unique graphic style of Nespresso extended to accessories, cups, assortment boxes, products, colour coding, packaging, boutiques, window merchandising, and professional division. In Nespresso boutiques all 5 senses are combined: the customers can get all the important information about the coffee, see different coffee machines and types of the coffee, try to make coffee themselves, smell the amazing coffee aromas, and of course, taste it.

Kind regards,
Yulia Khazanova


I happened to stumble on this very interesting application called Nike BOOM. When we think about Nike we think about top athletes and this application helps you to experience being a top athlete yourself!

It works like this: You just pick one or multiple of the many well known athletes and set up a custom playlist. Then you can start working out. Every once in a while the chosen athlete(s) will interrupt the song played and give you a motivating speech. Just like they get from their own personal coaches.

To make this application even better, you can share your work out on facebook. I think this is an important feature, because many people like to brag on facebook. Besides that it also keeps track of your history, so you can check how much progression you have made.

Here is a video that shows the free application

Hope you guys like it

Ruben Agterberg

Cholera and Malaria for sale on the streets of New York

Since we discussed Word Of Mouth in session 9, I am very impressed by the stunts that companies arrange to create positive Word Of Mouth. When I searched on the internet for more examples of positive WOM, I found a website with the top 7 Guerilla Marketing Events. These events are organized to create buzz. There is one example that intrigues me greatly: The dirty water vending machine. This Guerilla Marketing Event has conquered the fifth place in the ranking, but is certainly not less impressive as the winner. The video shows a vending machine on the streets that sells dirty water and a guy that walks on the streets selling dirty water. No one wants to buy from the guy. Be honest, because: no one wants to drink dirty water. Even though no one buys from the guy, there are a lot of people that buy the dirty water from the vending machine. The yield from the sales went to Unicef that bought clean fresh water for people in third world countries. The stunt was on the national television.

The top 7 Guerilla Marketing Events are posted on the website:

I would say have a look onetime because some events are very impressive!

Marjon Koster

Comparison-sites turn out to be not fair!

In the course we discussed a lot about comparison-sites, especially with the guest-lecture of and business-case examples. Today the Dutch Competition Authority came up with an interesting research about 40 comparison-sites, specialized in savings and travel insurances. They conclude that 60% of the sites are showing wrong numbers and do not show enough products to compare. The Competition Authority explains that the consumers, in this way, are not informed well and therefore they can make wrong decisions for this really important products.

Also they explain that in about 50% of the sites it is not clear which company owns the site and in which way the make it profitable. In that way the shown information is not transparent. Therefore they recommend a Code of Conduct and the try to inform consumers about this problem. They give an advise to use different sites to complete the comparison, before the consumer takes there decision. Also they recommend to compare your findings with the ‘old-fashion’ information given directly by banks and insurance companies.

Henk van Don, board member of the Dutch Competition Authority says “Comparison sites are useful for the consumer when they are show the entire information, are transparent and fair. Otherwise it is not clear wether you get the right offer or not”.

My opinion it that such a Code of Conduct can be very useful and can make the comparison-market more fair, especially it can give a positive boost to companies that are doing right at this moment. They do not need to change much and they possibly will loose some competitors that are unfair right now. Mieke van Os has explained to us in her guest lecture that increased their sales when they showed their telephone-number and information about the customers. Such a simple difference brings in more fairness to the consumers and also the transparency of the company seems an opportunity to me. On the other hand Mieke van Os said that they do not show all the products in the comparison, because the consumers do not want such a specific result. But she also mentioned that it is possible to compare all the companies or products on their site, for the ‘die-hard’ comparison-consumer.

Concluding, comparison-sites give opportunities to both consumers and companies, but it is important to keep up the fairness! In that way, a Code of Conduct, as mentioned today by the Dutch Competition Authority will be a fine idea!

Youtube is thinking of a different ad strategy


I remember, some weeks ago,  there was a lot of discussion in class about advertising in social media. What are the types, how each type work and if these types are profitable. I found an article about youtube, which is redefining its advertisment strategy. It is a move to interest both audiences and businesses. As youtube’s Vice president of sales and marketing says:  “imagine if [the site] could help a company think through user behavior and create campaigns that leverage search, social capabilities and YouTube. . . . Everything will be more integrated.” I attach the link for the article and I hope you will find it interesting.,

George Panagos

Involvement of fans or consumers

The involvement of fans of a football club can be enormous. I would like to give you two different examples.

First of all, in 2005 an American business family bought Football Club Manchester United. A lot of the fans of Manchester United did not like this, because they thought, the business men did not love the sport and the club, but only want to make money out of it. In November 2005 those fans started their own Football Club: FC United of Manchester. They play every week a match and around the 11,000 fans support this team nowadays, and to not support Manchester United anymore. As you can see, some consumers/fans used to be very loyal, but such a big change did change their idea about ‘their’ club as well.

Another example of the involvement of a football club and the fans is in Mexico. In Mexico there is a club in the second division where the fans make the squad. They vote before the weekend which players are playing and who it not. In the break the supporters can vote via Twitter, the website and text messages which players should be substituted. And believe it or not, they are doing very well in the league (fourth place). The players are very excited and say that the supporters always support them (because they make the line-up). Of course sometimes players are angry with the supporters because they do not play.

Continue reading Involvement of fans or consumers


Hey people,

Last session Dimitris talked about the LinkedIn Alumni network for Consumer Channel Dynamics. I really like LinkedIn. It can be very useful and it is not like Facebook or Twitter. LinkedIn is not only a social network site, it also helps you to create a valuable network. I started to read some things about LinkedIn last year, and figured out that it can be helpful sometimes to deny some people, it is not about how big your network is, but how useful. Sometimes a smaller network can be more useful than very big networks.

I added a small movie about LinkedIn, because I saw some people not raising their hands when Dimitris asked if everybody used LinkedIn. The first time I was a little bit skeptical as well about LinkedIn, but now I think it is very helpful.

Continue reading LinkedIn

Co-Creation trend or a new standard?

The last guest lecture was really interesting and informative. She talked about the evolution in the means of advertisement and the value of co-creation. When I asked her to answer my question  “Is co-creation a trend or a new standard” without a second thought she replied “Definitely, a new standard”. However, among the examples that she present from companies that successfully use co-creation, like Nike and Fiat there were examples of companies with great success which they scorn this new trend, like Apple (!) and Ford.

So if co-creation is a new standard how these companies manage not only to survive but also to be at the top without using it????

The words of Steve Jobs  “You can’t just ask customers what they want and then try to give that to them. By the time you get it built, they’ll want something new” and also Henry Ford who  said “If I had asked my customers what they wanted they would have said a faster horse” puzzled me a lot. The truth must be somewhere in the middle I thought.

After having read the article Co-creation: a new source of value, by Ajit Kambil, G.Bruce Friesen and Arul Sundaram I realized that co-creation will be a new standard if it used properly so as to increase profits and loyalty.

There are a lot of ways for companies and customers to build the trust to effectively co-create.     Continue reading Co-Creation trend or a new standard?