How to Springboard Your Innovation

Your organization may be asking you to lead the next big innovation. Believe it or not, there may be something in your current research that can be a useful springboard to motivate your team during the innovation journey.

I’ve found that uncovering new insights by reviewing existing data can be a great start to innovation development. To do so, you will need to review this information with your “innovation lens” on, and look at things differently. This can be a lot of fun, especially with those on your team who are not always exposed to consumer research.

Believe it or not, there may be something in your current research that can be a useful springboard to motivate your team during the innovation journey.

For example, in a recent workshop at a client, managers from marketing, packaging, distribution and customer satisfaction were exposed to consumer insights, customer satisfaction levels and challenges. They were also given a briefing on the distribution capacity and issues related to the supply chain. The discussion that evolved went into a much broader and deeper discussion regarding the consumer and the business than previously had been done before. The result was that identifying consumer needs and the innovations necessary to meet those needs were more understood across the organization. The criteria for prioritizing the innovations had a broader business perspective and were more actionable. Moving forward, the group continued to work together in a way where most of the key consumer insight meetings were represented by other functional areas for input and discussion.

Different companies will have different needs, but here are a few examples of what to monitor.

For future research projects, it can be very useful to set up a simple feedback mechanism so they can feed into your ongoing innovation cycle. Something as simple as answering a few questions after each project can help your organization remain alert to new information that needs more exploration. Different companies will have different needs, but here are a few examples of what to monitor:

1. Physical use of the product: New mentions of how it is carried, stored and opened could be a starting point for changes needed to existing products, a new product opportunity or highlight what functions of your product could be eliminated.

2. Language used to describe competitive products and brands: New words could be the first realization that customers are shifting their point of view of your products and looking for alternatives leaving open opportunities for you or your competition.

3. Demands on daily habits: Changes in household make-up and/or new frustrations at home could lead to a new routine and usage of products could change. White space opportunities need to be investigated for new opportunities.

Exploring existing research and company data for clues. Keeping a simple monitoring tool in place for future projects. These are excellent best practices to keep your team moving forward to drive innovation.

Need help finding the right clues in your data?

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