What can Wolverine teach us about engaging the crowd in creativity & innovation?

wazoku Blog

It seems that movie Hugh Jackman is helping Hollywood wake-up to the wonders of engaging the crowd to generate creative ideas. A series of tweets he posted yesterday suggest that he’s crowdsourcing ideas from fans for the final Wolverine film. His first tweet alone received 11 thousand responses!

Given it’s the fans who will ultimately buy the tickets to make the film success, this is a great idea and a sure-fire way to make the next film in the series a hit. But Hugh’s not the only one cottoning on to the benefits of asking the end-audience and/or users for their creative input ahead of idea implementation…

  1. LEGO ask super fans to come up with concepts for new sets

This was drawn to my attention on Twitter by @alexscroxton who’s helping drive support for a potential new set called “Lovelace & Babbage, build the first computer” . It seems that everyone’s favourite analogue toy giant allows fans to propose ideas for new Lego sets on its dedicated ideas website, LEGO Ideas. Users share their ideas, and then have to gather 10,000 supporters in order for it to move to review by the Lego Review Board, who then decide whether to make it a real product.

  1. The Co-operative Group asked the nation to help shape its future

Back in February 2014, this British company – which runs a family of businesses in various industries, including grocery, insurance, funeral care  – invited the public, customers, colleagues and members to advise them on which direction to take the organisation in. We were particularly excited to hear about this project, as this is what we work on with businesses of all sizes, day in and day out. You can download the output from this exercise here.

  1. NASA invited the public for outside-the-box thinking about human space exploration challenges

The agency explains that it is “working to more effectively harness the expertise, ingenuity, and creativity of individual members of the public by enabling, accelerating, and scaling the use of open innovation approaches including prizes, challenges, and crowdsourcing.” At present NASA is looking for input into its Quest for Quakes Challenge, NTL Micro-Task Challenges Pilot and Achieving Earth Independence.

  1. McDonalds asked for help building the most delicious burger

Last year McDonald’s invited the British public to design and name their ultimate beef burger, with the top five going on sale in-stores. The company invited burger lovers to share their concept online and then to gather public votes, with the 12 most popular burgers going through for assessment by the MY Burger judging panel.

  1. Waitrose asked staff on the shop-floor how to save money

Rather than leave senior management to make decisions about how to improve productivity and make financial savings, leading British grocery retailer Waitrose decided to involve staff on the shop-floor. It used online collaborative idea management platform Idea Spotlight to engage 60,000 employees in the programme. Over 100 innovative ideas were generated in the initial 5-month pilot, and once idea alone has generated £100,000 savings per year just by changing the way that till receipts are formatted!