Consumer Participation and Experiential Marketing: Understanding the Relationship Between Co-Creation and the Fantasy Life Cycle

Clinton Lanier, Jr., University of Nebraska, Lincoln
Ronald Hampton, University of Nebraska, Lincoln
Current research in marketing argues that consumers and producers are now intertwined in the co-creation of value. As more and more marketers are adding experiential components to their offerings to increase the value proposition, one wonders how this might affect consumer participation. We argue that one way that consumers engage a marketing experience is through a mediating fantasy that changes over time. This paper explores how consumer participation in a marketing experience changes as customers move through the fantasy cycle. The data from our ethnographic study of Renaissance festivals suggests that consumer participation in the festivals evolves from co-optation, to co-production, to co-creation, and then back again as consumers develop and modify their fantasies to enhance their engagement of the experience. While not all consumers follow this path, we do find a relationship between the desired level of fantasy engagement and the type of consumer participation.
[ to cite ]:
Clinton Lanier, Jr. and Ronald Hampton (2008) ,"Consumer Participation and Experiential Marketing: Understanding the Relationship Between Co-Creation and the Fantasy Life Cycle", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 35, eds. Angela Y. Lee and Dilip Soman, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 44-48.