Volume 3, Issue 4

The Zero Moment of Truth in Mass Customization (pp. 173-178)

Thomas Aichner
Mass Customization (MC) companies can not sell their products in traditional stores. This implies that customers take their purchase decision on a different level, the Zero Moment of Truth (ZMOT). Companies need to know when and where this happens, how the decision making process of their potential customers works and how it is influenced by product-related concepts such as purchase intention, product knowledge and product involvement. This paper gives an answer to these questions and provides implications for marketing managers of MC companies. Finally, a definition of the ZMOT in MC is formulated.

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The Usage of Social Media Applications in Product Configurators (pp. 179-183)

Paul Blazek, Monika Kolb, Martina Partl, Clarissa Streichsbier
The objective of this paper is to analyze the usage of social media in mass customization. Configurating a product to the specific needs of each customer requires information exchange and interaction with the customer. Social media can be used not only for communication purposes but also for example to help the customer in the configuration process or enlarge the shopping experience. By analyzing 412 web-based product configurators we identified the status quo of social media usage in mass customization and discuss possibilities of integrating social media elements in configuration systems. To illustrate the results we give examples and show how social media can be applied.

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Production System Concept for Implementing Mass Customization Strategy in Furniture Industry (pp. 185-194)

Svetoslav Dimkow
This paper presents a production system concept for implementing mass customization strategy in furniture industry. The developed concept represents the characteristics of the European and Bulgarian furniture industries as well as the globalization’s impact on the furniture industry. The suggested production system concept is based on the development of organizations through partnership and the development and application of a strategy for mass customization in contract manufacture. The suggested conceptual solution for establishment of Suppliers Park would have a great importance for the Bulgarian furniture industry because each time more Bulgarian furniture enterprises turn to the idea of founding a contract manufacture. The suggested decision is a stage in a research project between Technical University Sofia and representatives of the Furniture Cluster in Bulgaria.

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Improving Tourism Package Configuration in Web Environment (pp. 195-203)

Igor Fuerstner, Atila Nadj
The customers can use numerous specialized services that are available on the Internet, if they want to configure a tourism package. These services can be of lesser or greater complexity but most of them configure an offer from a series of picking lists from which a customer should pick an option. This can often be rather time-demanding and frustrating, especially when the customer has no real knowledge about the offered options. Therefore, this paper proposes the structure of a web-based tourism package offer, which enables the configuration of a tourism package for a specific destination in a time-effective way, accompanied with a case study.

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A Model for Evaluating the Solution Space of Mass Customization Toolkits (pp. 205-214)

Guido Hermans
Mass customization involves consumers in the design process by enabling them to customize a product through the use of a toolkit. The aim of this paper is to develop a profound understanding of constructing a solution space of mass customization toolkits and to examine the autonomy of the user in relation to the solution space. In this study a model is proposed that can be used to evaluate the solution space of mass customization toolkits. The model is based on target outcome and guidance and analyses toolkits by examining product attributes, mechanisms and choice in the solution space and guidance throughout the process of customization. The three main findings presented concern the emphasis of existing toolkits on customizing ‘hard’ product attributes, a strong focus on ‘lower-level’ product attributes, and the lack of uniqueness in the outcomes from current toolkits.

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A Collaborative Mass Customization Design Project on Electronic Consumer Goods (pp. 215-221)

Sultan Kaygın Sel, Owain Pedgley
Mass customization in the electronic consumer goods industry can benefit from the vision of industrial designers to show what is achievable. To research these issues, a mass customization project was carried out with 36 undergraduate industrial design students working in collaboration with Vestel Electronics Company (one of the leading electronic consumer goods manufacturers in the world). Students were required to generate innovative product proposals for four product groups currently within Vestel’s design and manufacturing portfolio. The research findings are summarized with key principles for mass customization of electronic consumer goods and identification of problems and opportunities.

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Utilization of Design Configurators in Order Engineering (pp. 223-231)

Marko Makipaa, Pasi Paunu, Timo Ingalsuo
Configurators are essential tools in mass customization. While sales configurators and product configurators have received a fair amount of attention, this study explores a new type configurator for use in order engineering: design configurator. Design configurators can be used to automate order engineering and decrease lead-time for product quotations and customized designs. Thus, they can bring ETO companies closer to mass customization. By determining the requirements for and developing the concept of a design configurator, this paper paves the way for further research on design configurators. Through multiple case studies, the applicability and benefits of design configurators in different industrial contexts are illustrated.

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Digital Innovation in Fashion - How to 'Capture' the User Experience in 3D Body Scanning (pp. 233-240)

Fanke Peng, David Sweeney, Philip Delamore
Current research on 3D body scanning isprimarily concerned with technology development. Personalisation is seen as paramount, while development is influenced more by technology, than design. This research was designed to investigate the 3D body scanning service (BSS) of the current fashion market and to build a framework predicting those factors influencing consumer adoption of 3D body scanner applications for a particular personalisation system. The framework considers acceptance factors, plus user journey factors and their combined effect. Thus, an extensive user experience study was conducted, which was empirically tested through semi-structured focus group interviews and self-reported metrics, to validate results and obtain further insight.This research project offers a major opportunity for innovation in the fashion industry, enhancing understanding of adoption factors and also providing a starting point for further research into branded BSS apps or services, such as m-commerce through branded apps.

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Engaging Mass Customization Customers beyond Product Configuration: Opportunities from the Open Innovation Field (pp. 241-251)

Martin Stoetzel
Mass customization in the sportswear industry has become an established business for many of the leading brands. Adidas is running its mass customization program (mi-Adidas) for over a decade now. This case study investigates how the mi-Adidas program has evolved over the past 10 years and how it has become a strategic business for the Adidas Group. Furthermore, by examining other customer involvement approaches, specifically customer-centric open innovation models, this paper presents different opportunities for further exploiting the creative and innovative potential of the mi-Adidas customers. Especially two open innovation approaches, design contests and the suggestion box, seem to be highly applicable and therefore meaningful potential extensions of current mass customization offers. It is remarkable however that the linkage of the concepts of mass customization and open innovation has received rather little attention so far, both in theory and practice. The discussion in this paper suggests further investigation into this area in the future.

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Implementation of Mass Customization Tools in Small and Medium Enterprises (pp. 253-260)

Teodora Stojanova, Nikola Suzic, Anja Orcik
With the increasing competition in the global market, the manufacturing industry has been facing the challenge of increasing customer value. Mass Customization is the result of a more self-aware type of customer who demands more choice and more involvement. Small and medium enterprices, through their flexibility advantages and closeness to customers, potentially can increase their sales volume in economic downtourns. Small and medium enterprises competitiveness is based more on working closely with customer to produce fully customized products. This paper gives an overview of the mass customization concept, as well as explanation of the implementation of some aspects of mass customization strategy by a furniture producer from Macedonia.

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