Open Innovation as a Business Entrepreneurship Strategy: The Consumer as Value Creator in Digital Ecosystems

Open Innovation as a Business Entrepreneurship Strategy: The Consumer as Value Creator in Digital Ecosystems

Miguel Angel Gomez-Borja, Carlota Lorenzo-Romero, Leticia del-Pozo Ruiz
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-1169-5.ch010
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The relationship established through online channels between customers and organizations defines a new and challenging scenario. Within a digital environment and through innovation strategies based on joint participation, it is possible to interact with the customer in a more personalized way with more differentiating actions. To identify the relevance of current online business management actions, this chapter proposes an approximation to the term open innovation. Authors posit the growing relevance for organizations of the application of innovation strategies through external inputs, the interaction between various agents and crowdsourcing actions. They discuss the new role of the consumers as co-creating agents of value in the new ecosystems of entrepreneurship.
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The strategic evolution in business has been transformed over time towards joint contribution approaches based on innovation and knowledge exchange between the different agents involved in markets’ relationships. Establishing actions based on innovation for the configuration of products or services redirects interesting alternatives based on the breadth of perspectives and value exchange. Furthermore, through the multiple options offered by an ecosystem as diverse and high-potential as the Internet, the online interaction between brands and consumers is currently based mainly on the individual as a key player (Chae and Ko, 2016).

Organizations have been implementing more competitive business management approaches in the market for new products and services development through techniques aimed at innovation, creativity and joint contribution with other agents.

Innovation has become a critical function in business management and in the development of today's businesses (Ernst, Hoyer, Krafft and Krieger, 2011). Currently, many companies have developed highly creative innovation projects with their external audiences, which also include cultural, social or economic perspectives (Ordanini, Miceli, Pizzetti and Parasuraman, 2011). Through online environments, today's organizations can interact with customers in a more direct and personalized way (Leeflang Verhoef, Dahlström and Freundt, 2014), through actions such as the exchange of ideas or the information sharing between individuals, thereby raising the value of brands (Kim and Ko, 2012). In the current context of the Internet, it is necessary to build relationships between companies and consumers through competitive strategies and actions that provide joint benefits for the parties involved, with the aim of attracting the interest of the recipient to the brands, in a more effective way.

Based on this research line, the objectives of this chapter are to analyze the background literature about the concept of innovation through firm-consumer co-collaboration in digital ecosystems, distinguish different conceptualization between similar concepts which may be confused by practitioners and to propose different strategies for improving the relationship between company and user through shared online collaboration.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Crowdproduction: consists of applying “mass production” actions towards an external audience in such a way that the promoter of the initiative proposes certain activities or tasks that require time, effort and creativity, and that are directed towards development of new products and/or services.

Open Innovation: use of knowledge internal and external to the organization, in order to obtain a greater joint contribution in product and service innovation and development processes.

Prosumer: Person acting in a dual role combination of producer and consumer who have become content creators or generators of ideas, with respect to the goods and services that they consume, and that show a much more active participation in the media, especially the digital ones

Crowdfunding: refers to the disposition of a large amount of people to voluntarily fund projects that are considered interesting in exchange for some reward, either in the form of participation in the financed business, a special price or promotion or any other form of payoff.

Crowdsourcing: use of the knowledge and/or skills of a multitude of individuals in order to provide solutions, ideas, or improvements to a specific proposal put forward by one organization.

Co-Creation: Strategic process for the joint and voluntary creation of value between consumers and organizations, with the aim of obtaining value in the co-creation process and with the objective of obtaining mutual benefit for all parties involved through the co-creation process.

Crowdwisdom: collective contribution of intelligence and knowledge that is based on the idea that a multitude has more knowledge than a single individual.

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