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Fan Machine is a proprietary Facebook application developed by Victors & Spoils that allows any brand's fans to submit ideas against various briefs that the brand puts forth - right on that brand's Facebook fan page.
What is Crowdsourcing and Co-Creation? My recent article on How Nonni's Biscotti Uses Crowdsourcing For Innovation Food Product Development illustrates how brands can use social media to develop new products, new media campaigns or virtually anything the want to be more relevant to the consumer. Every Foodpreneur client I work with has social media as part of their business and product launch.
According to Victor & Spoils "Once a given Fan Machine project is live, fans get busy submitting ideas, perusing other entries, and voting each idea up or down. Fans can also help promote the project by publishing the brief or their own submissions to their wall."
The Crowd is Your Customer and Influences Your Brand
Word of Mouth and the Internet go hand in hand. If you develop new products solely internally, you are creating products in a vacuum without your customer's input. Prior to the digital age, this task was relegated to focus groups. With the explosive growth of Facebook and Twitter you have the opportunity to get your customers into "co-creating" (crowdsourcing) new products.
When my dad started our family food business 65 years ago, it was enough to take a recipe from my grandmother and transform it into a $30 Million brand. Today you want to include your followers into commercializing that recipe. If we were in the digital age, our product line would have bee more responsive to what consumers wanted for Italian food meal solutions.
Your brand fans may give you great ideas directly, like flavor, size and price... OR you may get insight into deeper issues of consumer behavior, like how they use, why they use, when they use, and the like. The Nonni's Facebook
Why don't you give this a try with your Facebook fans or Twitter followers?
And if you do, let me know and I will blog about it.