Create True Product Innovation for Overwhelmed Consumers
I want to create something great. Consumers want to buy great things. Companies (our clients) want that too. Where is the mystery?
Consumers can’t tell us what they want
but we can show them what they’re looking for.
Curiosity about the inner workings of other people’s day-to-day life is one of the most fundamental human impulses. If you reflect upon something from your own point of view, even if you took and eventually look at careful notes, it is all gibberish: a mishmash of words, punctuation, and spaces. Really, what do you have to go on? But, what if we look at the problem through someone else’s eyes? Everyone and everything has a story to tell. I can see the future. What can you see?
As humans, we assume that most things are not interesting. We sit on the couch and flip through television channels and reject a dozen before we settle on one. Even when we select one to watch, we flip back and forth between other programming to see if we are missing anything. We shift through magazine racks scanning twenty publications looking for something to stand out. We always filter, rank, and judge. It is a necessity because our world is filled with infinite possibilities. If we didn’t do that, our heads might explode into gross drippy chunks of brain mush all over the floor. We would be frozen, unable to effectively function in a modern lifestyle.
To be good innovators, we have to fight the urge to filter, rank, and judge every day hunting for interest and relevancy. We need to slow things way down and take a close look at all the variables and see what others miss. Making coffee doesn’t seem interesting? Darn it, it has to. If it isn’t, it will lead you to something that is. No matter how pedantic, how routine, or how commoditized, with proper investigation, compelling opportunities become obvious. A deep understanding of the consumer experience is the primary tool to redefine product categories and regain a position of control in markets that have become commoditized. Rather than using research to validate what is already known, up-front research should be employed to generate insights that drive and inspire the product innovation process.
Designing for business success goes beyond knowing your competition. It requires the delivery of relevant and compelling consumer experiences. Who are they? What influences their expectations and behavior? How do they perceive value? At Altitude, we must ask ourselves these questions on a daily basis. By aligning desirable consumer experiences with a company’s goals and the realities of the market, new business opportunities and defined powerful design strategies can be identified to translate into true product innovation, and thus, real business success. This helps companies to stake a leadership position in their category by uncovering key barriers to consumer enthusiasm and adoption.
Do you know what’s next?
Meaningful. Distinctive. Desirable.