Co-creating value with social impact


Where the current focus is predominantly on business models that generate economic benefits for both the firm and customer and social benefits for customers through co-creating value, this business model generates also different benefits for both parties.

TTCMobile provides an interactive service that provides people information about either health, agriculture, social & economic topics, education and consumer goods. Where in most sectors people participate because of the efficiency benefits, survival is the main benefit for people participating in the health service. The prevention information on topics as Ebola and HIV/AIDS are examples of this. Furthermore, considering the social services the company provides, one of the main benefits of their business model is next to the profitability the social impact of their service.

The interactive service operates via a text messaging platform called Vusion. Vusion runs on every mobile phone (TTCMobile, 2016) and is considered to be a good communication tool to reach people in developing countries, since it also runs on basic feature phones. For example, 80% of the people living in Africa have at least a basic feature phone.

In order to provide information about the sectors to the people the role of two other parties should be considered as well. First of all, the organization that provides the information about the sector to TTCMobile. This organization pays TTCMobile for executing the project via Vusion. Secondly, the mobile network operator that provides TTCMobile databases with the mobile phone numbers of people.

The process of co-creating value is visualized below. Where at the front-end of the platform can be interactively communicated, the back-end realized that the messages receive the people via the mobile network operators and the other way around.

 

The people can respond to a message by sending a message back to a predefined shortcode. The next message TTCMobile will sent is personalized based on the information the participant sent (content-filtering).

Where the messages are now sent based on segmentation, it might be even more interesting to send tailored personal messages. Tailored information is relevant for a person and this might be more relevant when conducting impact studies.

Remaining difficulties of impact studies on this service are first of all the ability to process the information. It is hard to measure literacy problems and local circumstances under which people might be able to process the message (precarious situations).

Moreover, after people decide to adopt the service it is hard to measure whether the information activated the people and whether the situation improved because of the information.

Interactivity on the platform can provide insights into these issues. However, the people should be activated to become interactive. This starts by introducing the service and the possibility to interact and should afterwards be promoted as well.

Literature- and practical experience with promotion strategies should be applied to research this as well as the literature on WOM (Nyilasi’s framework). Furthermore, literature on cues that initiate interactivity is recommended to apply.

References:

– Nyilasy, G. (2005). “Word of Mouth–What We Really Know–And What We Don’t”. Connected Marketing, 161–85.

– TTCMobile (2016). Tag archives: Vusion. Available: http://ttcmobile.com/launch-of-the-worlds-largest-interactive-text-messaging-platform/#more-3094. Last accessed: 28 February 2016.

 

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