The roles of businesses and consumers are continuously in flux (Saarijärvi et al, 2013). While beforehand businesses called the shots in the exchange and interaction with consumers, nowadays, due to modern communication possibilities and information technology, the power of consumer’s increased dramatically with as a consequence that companies and organizations need to operate more client-oriented than ever before. On the other hand, companies have become more interested in consumer’s specific needs and opinions in order to translate these to relevant products that satisfy the market segments (Jansen et al, 2013). In the light of these developments, co-creation, which means that companies and consumers work together in order to create, design and develop products, services and so on, started to emerge.
It is still debatable what the term co-creation actually means and what is considered to be co-creation and what not. Some authors argue that co-creation already occurs when consumers are providing input in different business processes, while others argue that the active and continuous involvement of a consumer, indicating a productive collaboration between the business and it’s consumers, is the essence of co-creation (Jansen et al, 2013). Furthermore, co-creation is also associated with creating added value which would not have occurred without the input of both parties. However, obviously added value is difficult to measure and moreover, it is also difficult to determine for whom exactly the added value is beneficial (Saarijärvi et al, 2013). Anyway, basically co-creation can be viewed as a process in which firms and consumers redefine their roles towards each other and in which two-way communication and interaction are important aspects.
Continue reading Co-Destruction as the beginning of fruitful co-creation?
The development of the Internet brought us several online platforms on which we can exchange information, share pictures, listen to music, watch videos and so on. The use of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Soundcloud is incorporated in our daily lives and nowadays we can’t image living without these services. One of the most interesting aspects of our online behavior is the fact that people share and contribute information for free on a massive scale. So what explains this behavior that we observe in the online environment? Although the urge to earn some money, a rather intrinsic motivation, can definitely play a role in people’s considerations to share or contribute to information online, extrinsic motivations such positive emotions, social rewards and connections, seem to be strong motivators which explain people’s online behavior (Mingarelli, 2013).
So how can we reward the millions of people who share and contribute information which we can use for our own benefit? Thanks to Facebook, we are able to ‘like’ others’ shares and contributions, but the familiar like button provides a more ‘social reward’ to the contributors or creators of certain information. Is this type of social reward enough for creators to keep sharing their information and contributions online for free? According to Flattr, a service enabling micro donations, this is not the case. This European initiative beliefs that monetary support is the way to enable more content to be free and open. Flattring creators means that a supporter gives both a micro donation and social support, which provides a means of motivation which hopefully leads to more and better content to use and benefit from. Furthermore, Flattr argues that paying for content gives a warm and fuzzy feeling and moreover, the feeling of being part of the creation of great content.
So how does Flattring work? Continue reading Flattr: A ‘Like’ with Real Value
I honestly admit that Dutchies are often the first ones in line when there is something to get for free. Even on an international scale this characteristic is associated with the Dutch. Because I sometimes experience this typical Dutch behavior as embarrassing, I am glad to have found out that our behavior can be explained towards the world by the notion of the ‘penny gap’ which explains the huge psychological difference between cheap and free.
The difference between cheap and free is theorized by Josh Kopelman as the ‘penny gap’. This concept explains the difference between the demand for a good for free which turns out to be higher than the demand for a good at the price of one cent (Anderson, 2008). Obviously the penny gap is a concept which is strengthened by the (free) possibilities allowed by the worldwide web. The ability to access content for free like music, news and information is a dream come true for the Dutch, but of course also for the rest of the world.
Continue reading Caution: Free Does Not Always Pay Off