With a background in communication, marketing and advertising I have always been interested in consumer behavior. Finding out how we, as consumers, think and act and what influences us in this behavior. Especially in today’s interactive world where everybody is always ‘on’ and presented with an overload of products and information. What makes us decide to try out one thing and not the other? And what factors influence the way respond in a situation?
To satisfy my curiosity and to understand these issues I decided to quit my job and start a Masters in Management, Economics and Consumer studies at Wageningen University.
I built this weblog to share findings about my thesis topic ‘co-creation’, and to offer room for feedback and comments.
About my research
My thesis research evolves around the topic of ‘co-creation‘, where consumers and firms develop new products together, through constant dialogue and learning. Take a look at my research and thesis set-up:
Phase 1) Research: What is co-creation?
To learn all about the subject of co-creation, I conducted a thorough literature study and wrote a paper that explores the concept and practical implications. In the paper I offer a new perspective on the different roles consumers can play nowadays in innovation and I give some vivid examples. Read a summary of the paper
Phase 2) Interviews: What does it mean for companies?
But what do the practitioners say? What does co-creation mean for companies, how do they deal with this? To find this out I have conducted eight interviews with experts from different backgrounds, e.g. a Consumer Engagement Manager, an Innovation Manager, a Co-creation Consultant and a Professor in Marketing. I spent about an hour interviewing each person, it was so interesting and there was a lot to discuss and find out. I have written an article that summarizes the key findings. Read the article here
Phase 3) Experiment: How does it affect consumer perceptions?
For my MSc thesis I decided to take on a completely new approach. The thesis aimed to find out in what way the awareness of co-creation affects consumer perceptions about a brand and new products. Instead of focusing on the co-creative consumers, a small minority of the target group, it focused on the general consumer public. How do they feel about brands that co-create? How are attitudes and beliefs about a brand affected? Do they evaluate co-created products differently from non co-created products?
The outcomes have implications for innovation and marketing strategies. For this study I was sponsered by Insites Consulting and my thesis was granted with a 9. This means I graduated Cum Laude!
We are currently working on an article to get the research published. I will keep you posted!
You can view the a PDF of my Master thesis here.
Besides exploring all aspects of ‘co-creation’ I also spend a lot of time with my friends. I love to cook and have nice long dinners with them, or spend afternoons talking and sitting in the sun together. I also love to dance salsa! I dance every week in Utrecht and I like meeting new and different people every time and enjoying the music together.
I also love travelling, exploring new countries and getting to know different cultures and languages. My first adventure started when I was 20 years old and I moved to Seville, Spain. I lived there for a year and learned Spanish fluently. Furthermore I have been to Mexico, South-East Asia and Indonesia. Last year I traveled around Argentina for some months, all the way from the North down to the Southern parts of Santa Cruz province. Considering the country is about 66 times bigger than The Netherlands, this felt like a trip around the world!
You can find more information about me on my Linked-in account