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Friday, January 14, 2005

Turning Customer Ideas to Innovation

Strategy+Business article on how companies turn customer's big ideas into innovations.

Most successful product innovation requires imaginative insights and incisive action from heroes in the lab and in marketing. Indeed, whether it was wizards in Menlo Park or Xerox PARC who came up with the concepts, the most effective product development and commercialization processes have always been based on a dynamic and complex exchange of ideas and interests among engineers, marketing experts, and, most importantly, the end-consumer.

Booz Allen Hamilton and the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, product innovation experts cited in the Strategy+Business article list five levers to "discovering customer insights about products, and then incorporating those insights into product development":

  1. Employees Use the Product
  2. Successful Innovators Conduct Vigorous Market Research of Customer Needs
  3. The Engineers Stay Close to the Market
  4. Companies Perform R&D Around the World
  5. Innovative Companies Seek Understanding of Customer Behavior and Motivations

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