How to Engage in Co-creation for Social CRM - dummies

How to Engage in Co-creation for Social CRM

By Kyle Lacy, Stephanie Diamond, Jon Ferrara

Brand value in Social CRM isn’t defined only by marketing people. Its value is co-created by many individuals, including consumers, employees, partners, and so on. The communities surrounding these individuals and varying stakeholders play a key part in co-creation of experience and ultimately value. Truly social businesses encourage social collaboration in every fabric of the business, especially amongst their employees.

Co-creative initiatives can start anywhere within your organization, including customer service, IT, HR, web development, and marketing. Each of these areas (and more) present experiences internally and externally. Tapping into different stakeholders through collaborative interactions can innovate new products, operational processes, and business strategies.

Start with internal co-creation

Build a co-creation team, taking into account the strengths and weaknesses of your company’s different departments. Let the co-creation start with internal collaboration.

Role Positive Influence Possible Hindrances
Information technology This department is often the frontline of change, through new
software and application development. These team members are also
accustomed to collaboration.
Some team members may be more familiar with technical
experience and less in touch with the actual human experience.
Marketing and communications Typically, this is the department closest to the customer
Some of these team members may be less likely to co-collaborate
with other departments because they’re already the experts in
customer experience.
Research and development These folks are already very familiar with crowdsourcing for
product and service innovations.
R&D looks outward for innovation and sometimes stumbles
with collaborating internally.

If you have an internal customer service team, start the internal co-creation discussions with them. They’ll have a wealth of knowledge on what customers do, like, and ask about. Then move to the marketing team, who will be full of creative ideas and suggestions they’ve wanted to try. But don’t ignore other departments — you never know where a great idea will strike.

Aggregate information

Market research turns into an ever-evolving creative process with co-creation, which generates open dialog with customers that goes beyond simple demographic data. But it must also set clear expectations and limitations to access. Your organization has to offer transparency in these interactions with your customers. True co-creation requires trust, from both the organization and the customer.

After you establish trust with your customers, information can begin flowing. Aggregate this information in a central place and gather as much as possible. You want to collect not only customer basics, like age and location, but open-form content like ideas, complaints, and compliments. Information aggregation refers to the collection of information from multiple sources. In order for this information to do any good, you’ve got to keep it flowing.

Co-creation is a great way to keep relevant information feeding into your system. With its emphasis on consumer content and opinion, co-creation is a natural funnel for information.

Dell’s IdeaStorm raises the bar on aggregation of information for co-creation. Dell launched this community-focused site in 2007 to foster interactions and ideas from its customers. IdeaStorm invites users to post ideas on how to improve Dell’s product offerings and services. Other users in the community vote on the ideas

Five years later, Dell had implemented over 500 community-created ideas into product enhancements. With an abundance of ideas flowing into the community site, Dell assigned 16 employees with the title “idea partners” to foster, track, manage, and engage the community’s storm of ideas.