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Online Research Communities (ORCs) have ushered marketing research into a new era and are one of the fastest-growing segments in the industry. ORCs offer a selected number of consumers a closed online environment in which they interact and co-create with the company not only in “one-off” projects but over an extended period of time. The approach distinguishes itself by the flexibility and diversity of market research methodologies that can be applied. In our case study we describe the set-up, live phase and post-processing of the Vorwerk Thermomix Research Community. Over the duration of 3 weeks, Thermomix invited customers, who are also registered users of the brand’s official online recipe community, to participate in a moderated ORC. There were two major goals. First, Thermomix wanted to understand consumers’ “cooking journeys”, i.e. learn how they decide what to cook, plan their cooking, buy groceries etc. Second, Thermomix aimed to co-create with its customers and develop new features and functionalities for the Thermomix recipe community which serves as a central meeting place for cooking enthusiasts and brand fans. In the study, we show how the ORC was designed to answer our research questions and what methodological benefits the method yields. Furthermore, we investigate the user types that contributed to the platform most and provide insights into how to boost activity levels on the platform. In today’s social media context, ORCs are a valuable tool for brands to connect with their customers and engage them in value creating activities. This chapter sheds light on this new research approach and unveils the potential of brand community members for insight generation and co-innovation.
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- Empowering Members of a Brand Community to Gain Consumer Insights and Create New Products: The Case of the Vorwerk Thermomix Research Community
- Springer Berlin Heidelberg
- Chapter 24