Two of my favorite brands are Starbucks and Apple Store. In the book titled "The Power of Co-Creation" the authors talk about how these two brands (and others) have embraced a concept of co-creation to build huge successes.
Starbucks, an experience wrapped in a cup!
I first became a fan of Starbucks not because of the coffee but because of a segment on a Sunday morning show about how they treat their partners (employees) with respect and dignity. They are one of the most progressive employers in the U.S. and that really matters to me.
In 2008 Starbucks had to deal with "the perfect storm." The economy collapsed and the competition became fierce. They didn’t take it lying down. In 2008 they went interactive launching MyStarbucksIdea.com where everyone was invited to help "co-shape" it’s future. In the first year, 65,000 ideas had been submitted and 658,000 votes were cast. In 2009, 50 of the ideas had been approved and began launching. Then, they used their power to do good by launching "Pledge 5.starbucks.com" (ok it didn’t hurt PR either) where fans were asked to donate their time to community service. The result, by fall 2009, 1 million service hours were pledged. No one can say for sure but I believe these initiatives helped them turn a corner and in 2010 they returned to profitability.