My thesis is finally taking form! I have a great new product concept that I can use, developed by a well-known (and anonymous;)) Dutch food brand. My data collection has started and, with the help of Insites Consulting online panel, I plan to gather data from at least 600 respondents. Read on for the first results and click here for more information about my thesis research..
A first glimpse!
Last week I conducted a very short manipulation check to ensure my experiments’ stimuli are appropriate and well understood. Twenty randomly selected Wageningen University students participated in this pre-test: twelve were female, eight male and their ages ranged from 19-29. Besides checking the stimuli, I asked them to respond to some interesting statements about co-creation. Not from a scientific approach (the N is too low to begin with), but just to get an idea of what the students’ opinions are. Before showing the statements, a simplified and practical definition of ‘co-creation’ was given, to make the concept more concrete:
“Collaboration between consumers and a company, where they jointly exchange ideas and develop a new product. During the co-creation process consumers and people from the company work together as equal partners, and share their information and knowledge. The final purpose of co-creation is to develop a useful and attractive new product.”
The statements that were presented to the respondents are in the list below, and could be rated on a 7 point Likert scale (1=completely disagree, 7=completely agree). They were developed based on my interviews with co-creation practitioners and themes from literature.
- I think it is a good thing that companies are co-creating with consumers
- I think more companies should engage in co-creation
- I would want to participate in co-creation myself (depending on the product category)
- I think consumers can think of ideas that companies would not be able to come up with
- I expect that co-creation, in general, will lead to products that are better adjusted to my needs as a consumer
- I think co-creation is applicable to many types of products
The results are promising for my thesis research, as it shows there is a sensitivity to the concept of co-creation in new product development. Of course the positive framing of the sentences should be accounted for, but I expect this did not greatly influence the University students. Overall, there is a very positive evaluation on all of the statements!
The highest score was for the opinion that co-creation leads to new ideas. The average score of 6 (out of 7) suggest that respondents do think that consumers can come up with ideas that companies would not think off. The respondents are also quite positive about the future of co-creation and the usefulness for a broad range of products. They were not so sure about participating in co-creation themselves (4,6). Perhaps they are not that interested in this, or perhaps it was too difficult for them to assess because there was no clear example or scenario given.
I am curious to find out further results!
- NOTE: In the final MSc thesis questionnaire, the word ‘co-creation’ will not be mentioned. Consumers are often unaware of the term, so a description will be given instead to prevent confusion.
- NOTE: In the final MSc thesis questionnaire, the co-creation statements (mentioned above) are not part of the scientific research, but additional to it.