Interactive digital media facilitate access to rich user-generated content. The extent to which firms are able to leverage inherent consumer insights for innovation, however, depends on their absorptive capacity to identify, assimilate, and exploit this external information. Using a case study approach, we explain how firms can better leverage user-generated content for innovation. We collected information from 30 informants at two points in time and from various additional sources. Our findings highlight differences in absorption from solicited and unsolicited user-generated content and, thereby, expand extant theories on organizational learning. Besides, the in-depth case analyses shed light on the complex interrelationships between a firm’s organizational structure and its absorptive capacity. To illustrate the rich implications of our findings, we present a refined conceptual framework and derive key managerial levers.
contribution to scientific community
45th European Marketing Academy (EMAC) Annual Conference