What if you could join your favourite band in studio to record their next single? For many, this is just a moment to dream of – but last month Coca-Cola partnered with the rock band Maroon 5 to do exactly that in a social experiment to create a new song in 24 hours. Fans could watch a live stream of the band working on a new song in the studio and contribute to the brainstorming process in real time via a Twitter screen that was broadcast live to the band. Check out the recap video below:

The end result was a single called "Is There Anybody Out There?" that is available for a free download from Coke. Aside from being an amazingly creative campaign idea, this could spark more brands to consider a new form of co-creation where consumers are invited not to create content themselves, but to be the spark for professionals to create content. In a sense, this is no different than real life where artists often take their inspiration from their fans.

Though Coke's efforts have cause some to raise valid criticism about whether the campaign can be considered all that successful since the views and audience seems small by Coke standards, sometimes the most forward thinking ideas aren't the ones which go viral right away. To me, the real power of this campaign is that it imagines a world where brands can help connect people with the artists they love in a way that empowers them to contribute to what the artists are creating.

Inspiration as a form of co-creation is not just a great marketing concept, but one which offers musicians and even filmmakers a new way to engage their audience on a deeper level and also get better ideas and inspiration to make their work better.  The only downside is that it leaves a lot of people to thank from the Grammy/Oscars stage …