NEWS23 October 2009

Sense and Nesta invite brands to ‘co-create insight’

New business UK

UK— Co-creation agency Sense Worldwide and innovation fund Nesta are inviting brands to join a pilot project to “collaborate around insight” through a Web 2.0 knowledge platform and a series of workshops.

The project is based on a study of young men aged 25 to 39 conducted last year by Sense for the Discovery Channel. Discovery is now opening up the research to other ‘complementary’ brands, with the hope of triggering conversations and adding depth to the existing material. The aim is to co-create new brand and product ideas and potentially spark joint ventures.

Sense’s managing director Nick Corston said it was an “exciting development” to be taking Sense’s co-creation experience and extending it to the client companies themselves.

The project is backed by Nesta (the National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts), a body charged with promoting innovation in the UK, which Corston said has invested “a six-figure sum”.

Roland Harwood, director of Nesta, said the initiative “promises to deliver invaluable learnings around how consumer brands can cost effectively work together on insight-driven collaborations.”

Discovery’s original study, called Species, looked into the changing lifestyles of young men in the EMEA region. It involved 12,000 participants in 16 countries, using quant and qual methods. Sense continues to produce quarterly updates on the trends that the research identified.

Claire O’Connor, EMEA research and insights boss at Discovery, said the firm was “delighted to be able to share this foundational insight with other brands”.

Corston told Research: “Getting people in companies to talk together internally is a major achievement – let alone people in different companies. If they’re lucky they might bump into each other at a conference over a coffee but this is two one-day workshops where these brands will be forced, if you like, to develop ideas together from what they’re bringing to the table and the insights they’ve gleaned from this database.

“In the future we could possibly even get brands together and say, Who wants to co-create a million pounds worth of research into young females, or silver surfers, or teen audiences, with a view to sharing it between complementary partners? Suddenly there’s an economy of scale that could cost justify some phenomenal pieces of research.”

Sense is inviting interested brands to a launch event on 17 November.