“Welcome to the first ever Proven, Practical, Profitable Innovation podcast! I am Richard and I thank you very much for taking time out of your busy day to listen to this podcast.
We have now completed two major series on the fundamentals of innovation. While I have treated quantum idea generation and the science of persuasion as two separate topics, in our work with major corporations these two topics are always utilized together. In this podcast I will briefly discuss their interaction.
As preparation for inventing session, we always start with a deep dive into the client’s business. We want to understand everything that is to be known from their research about their customers plus an insightful examination of their competitors’ strengths and weaknesses. Out of this preparation, we look to focus on customer needs areas that show the greatest promise for competitive advantages. Some of the criteria for determining greatest promise include:
The opportunity and possibility to create a competitive advantage in delivering benefits to satisfy the highest need is always at the top of the list. Having said that, it is not always possible to have this be the focal point. There can be no research leads that we could develop and/or competitors are extraordinarily strong in this area.
Among the top three – four customer needs, we look for a need or two where competitors are not particularly strong. Competitors always have strong and weak points, and we want to develop competitive advantages where they are the weakest. It can create an easier win than taking on their strong points.
We also look for new benefits that might be added to an existing product. Dynamic new packaging can sometimes fill this need. Many years ago some cleaning products added a disinfecting benefit to their surface cleaning capabilities. For a period of time, this created the opportunity to claim that they were the only brand that combined exceptional cleaning and disinfecting.
Once we have determined the areas of highest potential return on investment, we customize the quantum idea generating process to meet their needs. When it comes to diversity, were looking for the right kind of external experts that can supplement internal expertise. When it comes to stimulus, we develop an entire library of tailored stimulus for potential use in the session.
As we develop ideas in a session, we are constantly aware of what it takes to have a high potential idea that has at least twice the chances for long-term success as compared to the average idea.
We’re looking for ideas where the benefit meets a critical need in a way that customers can immediately appreciate and see.
We’re looking for highly credible, yet easy to understand reasons to believe the big benefit promise.
And we are always looking at ideas in a competitive context. We are most interested in those ideas where there is a WOW dramatic difference versus some, most, or all of the competitors.
You heard me use the phrase “some, most, or all of the competitors” several times in this series of podcasts. Sometimes that means what it literally says. Other times, it recognizes that there are important subcategories within major categories. For example, in the clothes washing business there are liquids, powders, and pods. In a quantum idea generating session we may want to focus on developing ideas that can be better than all of the powder detergents, but that claim might not be defensible or exist relative to liquids or pods.
Most of the quantum idea generating session focuses on developing raw ideas and then making them bigger and bigger. There comes a time when you want to step back and evaluate which ideas are the most promising. The goal here is to decide out of the hundreds of ideas we develop, which ones appear to be most worthy of immediate next app development.
This is when the microscope of benefit, reasonably, and dramatic difference gets applied. We know these criteria of the appropriate filters for identifying the ideas with the highest potential for long-term success.
Usually at the end of an idea generating session, we will take the most promising ideas and have the folks at Merwyn complete a formal research evaluation of those ideas. From that we learn which ideas have the greatest chances for success along with our first look at possible year one sales potential.
Hopefully you now have a better idea about how quantum idea generation and the science of persuasion work very closely together. When they do, you can have a highly productive innovation session to invent new products. In many ways, it is a way to dramatically speed up the development and evaluation of ideas.
Again, every podcast is intended to provide you with a high return on your time investment. Every podcast is designed so you can immediately use the information to sell more and make more.
Thank you very much for your time and I look forward to reconnecting with you soon.