The Mike Warne event: The power of co-creation

The 13th Mike Warne Event, held at Bournemouth University at the end of February, once again proved to be one the real highlights in CIM’s calendar. Chris Daly, who kindly provided this year’s opening address, begun by reminding the audience of how this event continues to honour the legacy of former CIM Director Mike Warne, indeed it was a delight to once again welcome Sue Warne to the event.

Chris also paid tribute to the nine BA (Hons) Marketing Communications student volunteers who, in association with CIM, organised this year’s event. He explained how the inspiration for the idea stemmed from the students own experiences of co-creation as consumers. In addition, he highlighted how the power of co-creation will help all of us who were in attendance, to further understand how a plethora of brands, are now actually using co-creation, as means of innovation in their marketing.

The event was expertly delivered by our three excellent speakers, Charlie Leaver (Global Brands), Mike Hawkyard (Gamebrain) and Will Roberts (RNLI), who provided invaluable insights from their own experiences, to illustrate how co-creation is very much on the rise within marketing. In their presentations, they discussed how now, more than ever, consumers are engaging in a dialogue with brands and in turn very much making their voices heard. In fact, as they pointed out, using very thought provoking examples, consumers are clearly becoming increasingly involved in creating their own content.

Charlie for example, has managed various brands from Global’s extensive portfolio, including VK and she discussed how their brands now have passionate advocates across many different demographics. In particular, she provided us with a very thought provoking reflection of her own experiences of co-creation with consumers and clearly concluded that it is something that needs us to think about how we develop a very clear focus at different levels across our portfolios.

In another very engaging presentation on the night (who will ever forget the paper planes?), Mike used his own experiences to illustrate how co creation can work as a real positive, for those involved in the development of digital games and apps, to support the delivery of financial, educational and communication goals at Gamebrain. No-one who attended, will ever look at a hashtag the same again to be fair.

Will used his delivery to highlight how co-creation is being deployed as a means to challenge how the RNLI delivers its lifesaving and prevention services. In his very well-considered presentation, Will used a number of real life examples, to highlight how by entering into dialogue, the RNLI has manifested a number of really important benefits, particularly around how the organisation can address the South West’s water safety challenges.

In the closing address, Brian Doidge the Chair of the South West Regional Board of the CIM summed the evening up by concluding that:

“The event now in its thirteenth year, has developed a very positive reputation and this year was definitely no exception. This enviable reputation is very much reflected in the quality of speakers that we saw on the night of course. I thought that the event was very relevant, definitely purposeful, really interesting and extremely worthwhile. Its real strength though I feel, lies in the fact that it is what is not actually seen, that made what was seen, all the more special. The excellent collaboration, planning and preparation by the speakers, the CIM team and the Marketing Communications students, ensured that those of us who attended, had a first-hand experience of what co production actually looks like in practice.”

We are already looking forward to the 14th Mike Event in 2020.

More photos from the event below: