The individualization of demand and the advent of long-tail markets are forcing companies to re-invent themselves and reach new levels of flexibility. Mass customization (also called mass personalization) is a key strategy. Noted expert Prof. Dr. Frank T. Piller has studied this mechanism in more than 200 different companies and has found that it is widely applicable and very powerful provided it's fully understood and appropriately deployed.
Frank T. Piller is a Co-Director of the MIT Smart Customization Group at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the chair professor of Technology and Innovation Management at RWTH Aachen University, Germany. Before Aachen, he worked at the MIT Sloan School of Management (BPS, Innovation and Entrepreneurship Group, 2004-2007) and was an associate professor of management at TUM Business School in Munich.
His research focuses on value co-creation between businesses and customers/users and the interface among innovation management, operations management and marketing. Frequently quoted in The New York Times, The Economist and Business Week among others, Prof. Piller is regarded as one of the leading experts on mass customization, personalization and open innovation. Read his blog at http://mass-customization.blogs.com.