Customers becoming creators: how firms leverage technology and consumers for new value

Pierre Dal Zotto (Grenoble Ecole de Management, Grenoble, France)
Sylvain Colombero (Grenoble Ecole de Management, Grenoble, France)
Federico Pigni (Grenoble Ecole de Management, Grenoble, France)
Meyer Haggège (University Grenoble Alpes, Grenoble, France)

Journal of Business Strategy

ISSN: 0275-6668

Publication date: 16 July 2018



The rapid development of information and communication technologies (ICTs) has facilitated consumers’ involvement in firms’ value creation processes through increasingly near real-time information exchanges. This strategic opportunity configures new forms of ICT-enabled collaboration between firms and consumers. Firms can now immediately react to consumers’ requests/complaints, having gained real-time visibility of consumers’ actions and behaviors. Despite the increasing deployment of ICT-enabled value co-creation projects, managers still poorly apprehend them as high-potential strategic initiatives.


This paper investigates this gap through a multiple qualitative case study based on 17 organizations that successfully implement ICT-based value co-creation initiatives, including Lego, Netflix and Blablacar.


This study identifies two dimensions of the ICTs’ value co-creation process, namely, the firms’ involvement and customers’ role, in this co-creation process. Through these dimensions, four ICT-based co-creation initiatives are observed and defined: community, customers’ contributions create the firms’ value proposition (FVP); customization, customers’ service consumption personalize FVP; reputation, customers’ contributions about the offered services completes the FVP; and sense, an algorithmic approach, designed to focus on learning from customers’ consumption tailors FVP.


This study advances a framework supporting managerial decision-making concerning the aptitude of co-creation initiatives to meet organizational goals. Managers may gain insight from its use especially in assessing emerging opportunities to engage consumers in the value creation process.



Pierre Dal Zotto, Sylvain Colombero, Federico Pigni and Meyer Haggège (2018) "Customers becoming creators: how firms leverage technology and consumers for new value", Journal of Business Strategy, Vol. 39 No. 4, pp. 42-65

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