Social innovation fuels product development
As competition to gain market share increases, leading companies, like Lego, GM and Threadless, are actively exploring innovative strategies for bringing more profitable products to the market more quickly. One of these strategies is social innovation. The ability for customers to interact with organizations and their brands on the social web has dramatically changed the customer relationship. Social innovation widely encompasses strategies, concepts and ideas that ultimately fulfill a social need. Applied to product development, it refers to the ability of an organization to incorporate social means of communication with all stakeholders in order to design better products. According to a blog by Donald Smith, a digital media ethnographer for General Mills, “More and more companies are embracing social innovation because it eliminates some of the waste involved with traditional go-to-market strategies. Waste like inventories, launch costs, and product failures.”
Adopting a social innovation strategy: Overcoming challenges
Over the past months I have listened to some of the challenges in product development that our clients face in 2011:
Reduce time-to-market: When planning a product launch there is little room for error in this fast-paced fiercely competitive environment. Product revisions and cycle times need to be shortened in order to get the product out to market faster and more cost effectively.
Increase communication and collaboration between all stakeholders: Product development is a complex and strategic process that involves many departments and individuals with diverse goals and needs. As such, it becomes crucial for organizations to have tools that structure the conversation, and ensure everyone is on the same page and getting the job done.
Improve the methods used to determine market value or future potential of products: The needs of today’s customer can change rapidly making loyalty tenuous. Customers are also highly social and actively voice their opinions on brands and their product preferences. In order to gain full visibility into the market needs and ultimately competitive advantage, the right tools are to determine market value of your products.
OneDesk: A passion for social innovation
To be successful, you must understand what customers really want. Whether you are developing a new line of shaving gels or software that promises to revolutionize a business process, the ability to capture and manage customer feedback and incorporate it into the product development process will be the difference between a successful or failed product initiative.
OneDesk is a suite of blended social product development tools that allows the customer to be connected to the process. Its core applications include: Customer Feedback Management, Requirements Management and Project management all tied in with a social collaboration layer that keeps everyone connected, collaborating and constantly on the same page.
Share your thoughts with us: What product development challenges does your organization face? Do you believe social innovation is an effective strategy?
Take action: Ready to get started? Try OneDesk by signing up for a free account now.