Can We Learn Together?

Co-creating with Consumers

Deborah Roberts and Dr Susan Baker
Cranfield University
Dr David Walker
Synectics Europe


Marketing success is contingent upon the adoption of innovations, new products, services, processes and ideas. In turn this is dependent upon consumers' acceptance and perceptions of an innovation. Traditionally, the consumer is treated as a 'passive' player in the marketing process or, at best, a 'pseudo partner' within a relationship marketing context. It is, therefore, not surprising that innovation remains a high-risk activity and is notorious for its high rates of failure. Thus, a new approach to innovation appears pertinent, one that 'actively' includes the consumer in the marketing and product innovation process.