A Study of the Effectiveness of Customer Co-Creation Through Personalization and Customer Co-Creation Through Innovation on Brand Experience

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Kelsey Werner, Class of 2016


The purpose of this article is to study the effect of two types of customer co-creation, co-creation through personalization and co-creation through innovation, on brand experience. Customer co-creation through personalization focuses on the act of improving or changing a standardized product to make it unique to the consumer, and customer co-creation through innovation occurs when the consumer helps the company create a brand new product. Studies have shown that positive brand experiences can lead to improved brand satisfaction and loyalty, so looking at co-creation’s impact on brand experience will point to how co-creation ultimately benefits a company. In order to measure the brand experience of different types of co-creation, the five dimensions of brand experience are used: sensory, affective, cognitive, behavioral, and relational. To test how the different types of co-creation affect the different levels of brand experience and consumers’ buying behavior, I conducted an experiment. In order to account for extraneous factors, I also took the brand name and product category into consideration when evaluating co-creation’s overall effect. I found that customer co-creation through personalization and customer co-creation through innovation have different effects on the various dimensions of brand experience. The cognitive and behavioral brand experience dimensions were changed the most by customer co-creation, and the affective and relational dimensions were not changed at all by customer co-creation. From this, I can conclude that companies should not use customer co-creation to induce feelings or an emotional bond with consumers, but they should use co-creation to stimulate consumers’ thinking and action. Results did vary, though, depending on the brand name and product category. Ultimately, if a company is planning to execute either version of customer co-creation, there are many factors to consider (such as brand name, product category, type of co-creation, industry, and customers) before putting the plan into action.

Comments from Mentors

“It was a pleasure serving on Kelsey's thesis committee. I could say all of the standard things you say about honors students- she is bright, dedicated, and hardworking. However, I want to say that one of the things that I enjoyed most about my interactions with Kelsey was learning that she has a creative side. On a Fellows trip to San Francisco last year I was delighted to see that she is an incredibly talented dancer and choreographer. She was able to dance a routine with a couple of friends on a sailboat in the San Francisco Bay - not something I expected! So, I can attest that Kelsey fully uses both sides of her brain.”

--Dr. Tracey Rockett


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Neeley School of Business