Innovation and Growth

Innovation Led Amplified Growth in Small and Medium Business

The ultimate test of innovation is in its ability to amplify growth. But what and where to innovate on to drive especially swift growth has been a vexing area. Customers’ striving moments is one of the priority spaces to explore.

Innovation, essential for growth but only a few are satisfied

Growth is a challenge with rising consumer expectations, increase competition, erosion of differentiators and even digital disruption. There is no doubt that innovation can amplify growth, but what and where to innovate has been the complex part for organisations. Most of the executives agree that Innovation is critical for growth but very leaders few are satisfied with Innovation performance.

Now on top of this, layer in the additional question of Return On Innovation, immediate, medium and long-term revenue impact and it becomes even more challenging. The study has proven only 6% satisfaction in the above figure points out that a lot of innovation efforts are misguided in its efforts to help a company differentiate, compete better and ultimately drive revenue.

Linking innovation efforts to amplify revenue and growth

Innovation should drive immediate, medium-term and long-term revenue. The whole process starts with a diagnosis to identify revenue opportunities, formulating and shaping the innovation ideas to capture opportunities and then making everyone in the organization own it like their initiative. In the opportunity diagnostics stage, there are many areas to look at like profit pools within industry structure, trends, types of offerings, distribution channels, how customers make a choice etc. and then mapping it against your portfolio of offerings and capabilities. Out of these many variables, one of the most important and the lever which can guarantee immediate impact on revenue is customers Striving /pain moments.

Innovating in customers striving moments

Striving moments identification is one of the many steps that we do under product/service engineering. It starts with finding out the functional, emotional and social needs that the product/service has to solve for the customer, the context in which the customer decision is made, tasks that the customer has to perform in the course of consuming the product/service, quantifying the Striving moment and last devising innovative solutions to solve for the customers Striving moments.

Customers has very high degree of chance of not buying a product or service if it doesn’t solve a problem they are facing. In client engagement, we do thorough detailing of how a product is consumed and the various stages in the consumption process. This includes steps such as planning for purchase, purchasing action, consumption, evaluation metrics, corrective measure, workaround, conclusion and post conclusion stages.

Task-based observation of the product/service consumption stages open up needs which research and customer most of the time cannot articulate. These extensive steps are quantified, and funnel down for cracking the challenge. We termed as product/service enhancement matrix, further identified the striving moments, it becomes easier to build differentiation into the product/service designing and marketing. This Innovation process, we draw on principles from various organisational initiatives such as Six Sigma, Total Quality Management, Kaizen and Agile methodologies. Below is a masked sample output of product improved matrix.

Innovating Around ‘Wow’ User Experience

One of the Innovation case with a legacy player in the Fitness business, the task was to launch a weight loss program. Our Innovation research team discovered that most of the people drop out of program within the first two weeks. The daily visit to the gym, coupled with the struggle of sticking to the diet, and the daily weight monitoring drained whatever motivation they had in the first place. In all, we identified seventeen challenging moments at various phase in the weight loss journey that they were facing. Once the Striving moments were identified, we apply systematic innovation approach to develop solutions for the striving moments.

Few of the examples that have tapped into Striving moments beyond our engagement . Bounce™ (solution for last-mile connectivity) is a brand that has tapped into the power of Striving moments. Recently, they upgraded with an option to scan the number plate of the scooter you want to hire. Before the launch of this feature, the GPS would often lead a customer to a booked scooter, which was much farther when, in reality, there was another scooter within easy reach (Striving moment-don’t make we walk to a different scooter when there is a scooter near to me).

Innovating for new products

Epigamia™ is another brand that has tapped into the power of Striving moments. Look at Epigamia’s snack pack. Yoghurt alone would be hardly filling for any audience (Striving moment-will the snack be filling?). This in mind, Epigamia™ added granola to the same cup pack and went on to position it as a mid-meal hunger snack.

Innovating for Quick Revenue Impact

Innovation need not be a blue-sky brainstorming exercise with no connection to revenue. If you focus on identifying the customers Striving moments and innovate around it, you can be sure to make your innovation pay in multiples and that too immediate revenue.