It’s Time to Reverse-Engineer Your Innovation Process

by Carter Toni

Innovation is the key to success in today’s competitive business world, but it can be difficult to keep up. This blog post discusses how businesses are updating their innovation processes and making them work for them. We highlight some of the most successful new innovations that have been created by companies large and small.

What May Be Wrong With Your Current Process?

One thing that a lot of businesses struggle with is figuring out what may be wrong with their current innovation process. Maybe products are taking too long to develop and hit the market, or are not even being developed in the first place. It’s important to take a step back and assess where your company stands so that you can work on fixing any problems.

One common issue is that businesses tend to rely too much on their current processes and don’t update their products often enough. However, you can’t blame them. Many companies don’t have a real understanding of why their customers are using their products nor do they have management teams that can even agree on what their customers’ wants and needs are. Because of this internal failure, their whole innovation process is subsequently backward.

How To Improve Your Innovation Process

Many businesses don’t have a clear understanding of their customers’ relationship with their products because they do not define their customers correctly. It is important to realize that customers are not loyal to your product; they are loyal to the job that your product gets done for them and the outcome it produces. Because of this, it is important to define your customer correctly, then tailor the features of your product specifically for that type.

Defining Your Customer And Market

Your customer should therefore be defined as someone who needs to do the job that your product gets done. Similarly, your market should be defined as that group of individuals who need to get that same job done. For example, if you’re selling a product to an office worker who needs to process documents, your customer is the person writing those documents and your market would be all of those individuals within that group.

Conducting User Research To Discover Underserved Niches

Once you have this information, you can begin to conduct user research to find any niches that might be underserved. Because customers want their job to be done perfectly, the data you collect will be able to tell you which outcomes are not being met. For example, office workers don’t just need to write documents; they need to process them quickly and without error. Therefore, if your innovation process is outcome-driven, you will be able to create products that your customers actually need.

Developing Products That Solve Problems

After you have discovered these underserved niches, it’s time to develop products that solve the specific problems that are represented by these unmet needs. This can be done by looking at your data and understanding how people currently use your product to get the job done. Since you know this, you can begin to build features into your product that will help them get the job done more efficiently.

Once you have your product, you can begin to develop a road map for how people can actually use your product in order to complete the outcome they are after. This means planning out all of the features and necessary steps needed in order to get the job done. This will help you develop a compelling sales pitch for your product that can be used to explain how it works and why people should buy it.

Innovation is not easy, but by following this outcome-driven innovation process, companies large and small have been able to create products that meet the needs of their customers while quickly and predictably bringing them to market at the same time.

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