Written by Steve Xu, Analyst
In the second part of “Yes, Consumer Engagement is Important to Utilities. But What Next?”, we will talk about several co-creation models that utilities can use to engage energy customers.
In the first model, brands can run short-term challenges on niche crowdsourcing platforms to tap into their specialized communities: Designers, developers, engineers or scientists. Challenges typically have phases for entry submission, community voting and selection of winners by jury members, just like what E.ON UK ran their co-creation campaign with their customers.
In the second model, brands create their own co-creation challenge platforms to engage their community members and crowdsource branded videos and product innovations and business solutions. Some brands host the challenge on niche specific crowdsourcing platforms to reach the community, but also promote them on their own branded destinations.
In the third model, brands build and cultivate their own co-creation communities and encourage contributions through a series of challenges. This is an on-going platform and several brands have invested heavily in this type of platform to co-create the brand with their customers. For example to celebrate its 40th anniversary in Germany, McDonald’s launched Mein Burger, a co-creation campaign that invited Germans to make their own burgers online. People used a ‘Burger Configurator’ tool to choose from 70 ingredients (bread, meats, sauce, etc.) to build their dream burgers and to give them personalized names. In two years, more than 460,000 recipes were created and voted. Below is a video about this campaign, http://vimeo.com/40618555.
So if burger companies can do it, why not utilities.