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Identifying and selecting consumer trends [Case Study]

In our latest Collaborative Circle, leading Hargraves’ members explored the theme of ‘identifying and selecting consumer trends to drive projects and to bring the voice of the customer into the commercialisation process’.

Deloitte outlined some of the big picture trends in the digital age that have affected the business models of nearly all companies.

The key to responding is to make your information accessible and to be outpacing your competitors. You need to set up communities/networks inside/outside your organisation to help you filter this customer information based on what you are interested in.

Digital disruption is taking business away and resulting in reduced cost structure through different business models by redirecting to where the input comes from, eg people ordering groceries on-line and happy to pay for the service because it is of more value to them. The innovation cycle is becoming shorter/faster – failing quickly/cheaply – learn fast – involve your prosumers by making them part of the learning cycle.

CSR brought a start-up mentality to selecting options by targeting the segment that you are interested via Facebook profiles. The deficiency of consumer panels was highlighted as, because they are paid, they are polite and can be easily led as to what is being said by others rather than thinking things through.

The process utilised was to pretend that you have a product and create a campaign. On Facebook you nominate your segment of interest and how much you are prepared to spend on this search. Have a call to action to get your segment to click. Have a pre-registration of interest/release etc to gauge their genuine interest.

George Weston Foods outlined their methodologies in gaining/using consumer insights for innovation. They believe gaining a deep understanding of their target leads to a competitive advantage. Using story lines, they develop a clear understanding as to who is their target, why is their brand relevant to them and identify what’s missing that their target is seeking. Via Design Led Innovation, they observe the shopper selecting their product/taking it off the shelf and how they consume the product – identifying through this process what’s important to them, what delighted them and how well are they reaching the target that they want.

Selleys outlined how they have embarked on Design Led Innovation which pushes the ‘Why’ – making sure that you have the right questions and utilising the process of See/Think/Do.

The ‘See’ aspect looks at the current business model – using the Business Model Canvas technique to immerse the customer into their organisation. They identified some basic holes, especially the emotional aspects. They developed personas for their target customers, mapping consumer journeys as to what they go through to deliver the functionality, so that one option could be an offering from Selleys. The personas become stories of that journey and then a sit down with actual customers (~ 16) to validate the story to understand what they are really thinking.

They found that the majority of what Selleys thought they wanted, they didn’t. From this, they have identified two opportunities. The product that was their initial objective and now a service opportunity (far bigger) that exists elsewhere but not in their industry

Griffith Hack’s Lynne Teo and Mike Lloyd outlined their Ambercite Patent Mapping Process which enables you to very quickly get a picture of the IP in your current or future domain. With 65 million patents and 2 million being filed every year, it’s hard to keep up with what’s happening, even using Google patent for quick searches. Savvy companies are using IP intelligence as a strategy for formal planning and identifying white spaces, gaining advanced notice of competitive activity and due diligence for M & A’s/partnering or growing a business unit.

For a confidential chat about delivering an effective innovation strategy in your organisation, contact us.


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