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Brief Published: 21 Jan 2021

Lexus Taps Twitch Streamer & Fans for Prosumer-Created Car

Japanese luxury automaker Lexus teamed up with American live streamer Fuslie to let Twitch viewers co-create a custom ‘gamer ready’ version of the 2021 IS sedan.

The two-hour stream on January 13 used Twitch's poll feature to let 23,000 viewers vote on details like lighting, in-car gaming consoles, a 3D-printed controller and the exterior wrap. Lexus will realise the design as a full-size car, set to be revealed on another Fuslie live stream on February 17.

Collaborative digital experiences allow brands to open up new access points with younger audiences, and Twitch's audience participation tools make it a great platform for such live events. The platform ended 2020 with its biggest numbers to date, clocking 17 billion hours of watch time – up 83% from nine billion in 2019 (StreamElements, 2021). Stylus previously charted real-time co-creation as key to the future of social gaming (see The Metaverse Opportunity), and this launch evolves this concept for physical product development.

Indonesian artist Twisted Vacancy's Wicked Sunday Club product line, which we highlighted in Unlocking Virtual Economies, is a compelling case study on monetising the creativity of the collective. People who buy a shirt from the collection also gain access to digital design asset libraries and product templates, which they can use to create their own contributions to the collection. Sales profits are then shared among the Wicked Sunday Club community, using cryptocurrency Ethereum.

For more on how brands can nurture smaller-scale prosumer communities and turn digital creativity into a brand asset, check out Mobilising Online Microcultures. To read about in-car possibilities for brands, see Opportunities for Covid-Era Collaboration in Upgrading Automotive Commerce.