Customer Co-creation Focuses On The Early Product Development Stages

This was the outcome according a survey by Frost & Sullivan in 2011 amongst mainly B2B technology companies, as reported by eMarketer.

Ideation was the product development stage where co-creation was most applied. It is interesting to see that Product Launch is so behind. Co-launching together with the organisation’s (external) stakeholders is what could make a product or service more successful than others.


Because people are the most powerful media (Social Media), by opening up the product launch through co-creation, an organisation is guaranteed of a highly targeted buzz. The buzz is already being created at the pre-launch stages.

Sense-checking with consumers along side the process, continuously adjust products (or services) based on their perceived value and need to solve a problem. After having engaged them in the production process, the same set of people can serve as highly loyal ambassadors. In the co-launch stage this means an increased effectiveness and more importantly a uniquely shaped perception/approach of the brand and product based on the positioning-perception dynamic. An organisation is then able to reduce its advertising costs and dependency on agencies.

Overall benefits

The overall benefits of customer co-creation, when involving them in the full product development cycle will achieve the following benefits/results:

  • Reduced cost-to-market;
  • Increased speed-to-market and
  • Increased out-to-market.

The first steps are taken and customer co-creation is here to stay. This survey and others indicates that competitive advantages will be created and sustained through collaborative innovation. Companies who are able to adapt quickly to changing trends and involving their stakeholders will thrive.

To learn about and contribute to the understanding of Open Business, follow #openbusiness on Twitter.
An Open Business is an organisation that opens her activity directly and indirectly to external stakeholders through the use of social media, its data and technologies for the purpose of competitive advantages in marketing, service- and product innovation.

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