All posts by 323834mv

Creating Our Own Cars

Co-creation is probably one of the most used buzz words in this current day and age. Corporations are slowly starting to discover that they do not necessarily need to hire the most expensive experts to get the best ideas. Many individuals are willing to help because of their interest in the product. Communities of individuals interesting in their product have shown to be a rich source of information; not only complaints but also potential improvements. Many other organizations have found success incorporating the crowd in idea creation such as Lays, Unilever, Danone and Lego.

However due to the technical advances in the automotive industry, there is much lagging in the adaption of crowdsourcing in creating the auto motives of the future. Although it is hard, BMW Group created the Co-Creation Lab whereby allowing consumers or just general interested individuals help in the process of creating future cars. So what is the BMW Group Co-Creation Lab? It is a platform for individuals interested in cars to share their ideas and opinions on BMW auto motives and concepts (BMW Group, 2015). Instead of waiting for Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond or James May to evaluate BMW’s cars after they have already been produced, individuals can now take out their main concerns when the car is in the conceptualization stage. Besides evaluating concepts that have been developed by the BMW production team, they also have the ability to contribute their own ideas and suggestions.

customer telematics

Therefore, BMW Group has created several running projects in order to get the community to become the new innovative leaders for BMW automotive production. Furthermore, through their collaboration, the best ideas can be generated, combined and finally constructed. There have been many projects that have been completed already. Firstly, Customer Innovation Lab project evaluated the development of telematics (road transportation such as GPS) and online services making them more convenient for drivers. Of the 1045 users there were 215 ideas created by consumers of which 2 ideas actually were introduced to the market (BMW Group, 2015). Another project was less focused on engineering capabilities and more about preferences namely the Interior Idea Contest where consumers could indicate in which concepts there should be more individualization. Sometimes there are some interior designs whereby no other options are capable even though this might be wanted by consumers. With this more than 1100 users joined to create more than 750 ideas (BMW Group, 2015). Besides the actual idea creation, this platform allows for extensive feedback submitted by the users of which aspects BMW should change or improve.

After the many complaints of people placing their luggage in their trunks with Tetris precision, BMW group decided to host the Trunk Idea Contest. Through this platform, global consumers can address their concerns but especially create new ideas of how to best improve the luggage compartment. Currently still running and allowing for individuals to create the most innovative idea about how to improve the trunk space for their auto motives. Therefore, if you have any annoyances in your BMW or cars in general, Co-Creation Lab is open to hearing them and hopefully you can come up with some innovative ideas yourself to win the grand-prize.

BMW Group. (2015, May 1). BMW Group Co-Creation Lab. Retrieved from About Co-Creation Lab:



The Consumer Knows Best!!

Currently, organizations are using social media to interact more and more with consumers. One of such examples is the strong interaction that KLM Airlines has with its customers over social media. When the consumer ask for help or make statements, they are one of the fastest corporations to reply through social media. However, Lui and Gal (2011) investigate whether interactions affects the relationship between consumers and organizations. Therefore evaluating whether different types of consumer input can have varying effects on this relationship with an organization.

Through various different experiments, the authors try to analyze whether different types of input have which influence on the closeness of the relationship with the organization. Closeness is the amount of bonding that is felt in a relationship (Liu & Gal, 2011). Firstly, they experimented with the role of giving advice on the non-profit index and whether individuals are more willing to donate. When individuals gave advice to the organization, they had a higher tendency to donate to the organization due to the closeness they felt. Therefore asking for advice could actually influence the individuals willingness to donate.

Then they wanted to see whether these aspects would change if the consumers’ input changed to expectations regarding for-profit organizations. From the results became apparent that giving expectations had a negative effect on intent for an individual to purchase a product from that organization. This remained positive for the category of providing advice. Therefore, when the consumer provides expectations, the relationship between consumer and organization can actually be harmed.

Due to this interesting finding, they evaluated further under which conditions these aspects deviate. Through their third experiment, the authors found that advice giving resulted in the consumer placing themselves in the position of the organization and look for solutions. Therefore these factors resulted in more subjective feelings of closeness to the organization (Liu & Gal, 2011). Whereas stating expectations only resulted in a feeling of distance between the consumer and organization. When giving opinions, there was a mediating effect on the overall closeness, but leaning more to a feeling of distance.

Since giving advice can have such a strong influence on the empathetic relationship between consumer and organizations, their next step was to evaluate whether paying consumers for advice would further strengthen the closeness. They discovered that when consumers were paid for advice, the positive effect was actually eliminated. However this effect was not there with opinions. Thus organizations looking to create a strong closeness with their consumers should actually make sure there is a tendency for them to give advice to the organization.

Therefore companies such as KLM that trying to build strong relationships with their consumers can improve by asking for advice. Through consumers giving advice they can further strengthen their connections. Thus, they should stop asking for the opinions and expectations of consumers, but rather let them give advice on which aspects should be improved.


Liu, W., & Gal, D. (2011). Bringing Us Together or Driving Us Apart: The Effect of Soliciting Consumer Input on Consumers’ Propensity to Transact with an Organization. Journal of Consumer Research, 38(2), 242-259.

Are Advertisement Agents Out of a Job?


Why spend millions on promotion and advertisement campaigns, when consumers are willing to do it for way less? There has been an increasing trend of consumer-generated advertisement which is promotion through the input of the consumers. By using consumers to create advertisements, there is more engagement of the consumer with the business allowing for communicative participation.

Through the use of consumer-generated ads, much of the research about the brand and product is conducted by the consumer. However, we have always been taught that people are inherently lazy. Therefore, why are consumers participating in the production of ads? According to Campbell, Pitt, Parent & Berthon (2011), besides the inherent monetary reward, there are three main motivations as to why consumers generate in the promotion process, namely, (1) intrinsic enjoyment, (2) self-promotion and (3) change perception.

LayFrito was one of the leading companies to use consumer-generated advertisements successfully through extracting all the motivational concepts. Doritos, the nacho chips brand, started the campaign ‘Crash the Super Bowl’ in the fall of 2006. This campaign gave consumers the chance to create an advertisement for Doritos that would be aired during the Super Bowl with about 141.1 million viewers. In 2006, there were 1065 advertisements of 30 seconds sent to Doritos for the reward money of 10,000 dollars and two tickets to see the finals in Detroit. Doritos furthermore, motivated their consumers through intrinsic enjoyment of the creation of the advertisement as well as sell-promotion as they are the ones staring in the advertisement.

However one of the main fears of letting consumers create advertisement is that there might be less consistency in the company’s message (Thompson & Malaviya, 2013). Since the advertisement might not be in line with the overall vision of the company, there are some downsides in handing the responsibility to consumers. However during the ‘Crash the Super Bowl’ campaign, the submitted advertisements juried by the organization funneling them down to the 10 best advertisements.

The 10 best advertisements were then announced and the consumers had the opportunity to vote for their favorite advertisement to be aired during the Super Bowl. This again created consumer participation in the advertisement process by motivating consumers to have the perception that they can change the outcome of the advertisement. Through voting, the ‘Live the Flavor’ ad won the campaign and was the first ever consumer-generated advertisement to be aired during the Super Bowl. According to the USA Today Ad Meter poll, the ‘Live the Flavor’ ad was ranked the number 4 best commercial during the Super Bowl (USA Today, 2007).

Ever since Doritos has repeatedly created the ‘Crash the Super Bowl campaign to result in 4900 submitted advertisements between 2014-2015 to win the grand prize of 1 million dollars and a year-long contract at Universal Studies for the so-called dream job. Doritos is one of the best examples of how to successfully engage the consumer in the generation of advertisements.


Campbell, C., Pitt, L. F., Parent, M., & Berthon, P. R. (2011). Understanding consumer converstations around ads in a Web 2.0 world. Journal of Advertising, 40(1), 87-102.

Thompson, D. V., & Malaviya, P. (2013). Consumer-Generated Ads: Does awareness of advertising co-creation help or hurt persuasion? Journal of Marketing, 77, 33-47.

USA Today. (2007, February 5). USA Today. Retrieved from Anheuser-Busch Wins USA TODAY Ad Meter: