I am pleased to announce that my new book, Flipped: How Bottom-Up Co-Creation is Replacing Top-Down Innovation is out. Well, it's not totally a new book. Doug Seibold, Eileen Johnson and the good folks at Agate Publishing suggested that we republish my 2004 book, Beyond the Brand. Both of us felt that the book needed to be updated and that the original title didn't really capture what the book was about. We decided to go back to the name I had initially proposed to my first publisher, Flipped. To update the book, I put the full manuscript up on a wiki and invited people to participate. 79 people kindly offered to contribute to the updating the book. (I'll do another blog post with a list of these wonderful folks tomorrow.)
So much has gone on in world of co-creation in the last six years. I've been surprised and humbled that the things I wrote about still ring true.
Power to the People
People today expect the ability to co-create and lead innovation, forcing companies to devise creative solutions to be competitive in this new bottom-up age. Such an environment generates opportunities for companies who are creative and intimately listen to the cultures they are involved with; joining forces with other creatives including artists, journalists, filmmakers and musicians to create new ways of expression and creation. The resulting products that demonstrate a real understanding of their customers in the context of their lives will be successful. Instead of thinking globally and acting locally, the successful philosophy will be to think locally and act globally.
In the vast middle of the market, people will continue to treat brands as resources. These people do not have the time or the energy to be proactive in developing their own, relevant products. Instead, they will allow their peers to do most of the heavy lifting in creating new cultural materials – and then adopt those products as their own. Brands that connect with people’s imaginations, that inspire, provoke and stimulate, helping them interpret the world that surrounds them, will be successful. Brands that are able to make the transition to provide honest, original, cultural materials, offering space for co-creation will win. Proactive people will carefully weed out and broadcast those products, and companies, that they do not trust. Many companies have already discovered that being good corporate citizens can be good for their brands. In this new era, it’s the creative citizens of a community – the people and the brands – that will help companies survive by co-creating from the bottom-up.
Enjoy the book and be sure to give me a shout if you have any comments or thoughts.