Fighting for Innovation Attention
The fight for your audience’s attention has already (but only just) begun.
Apple, Lego, Philips, Samsung, IBM, GSK and, recently, Tata Steel, among many others – all have adopted open innovation initiatives to expand their organizations’ horizons. As competitive advantages enjoy shorter lives and the demand for external creative minds increases, you need to conquer the right audience to generate value.
Transforming, rule-breaking ideas have tremendous power in our knowledge economy. They go further and faster – across time and space – to disrupt processes, services, sectors and even our society.
However, you know well that no company holds within itself all the answers – no matter how many geniuses work for you or how competent your teams are.
Tear down those walls
This is where open innovation steps in, allowing you to break down more traditional corporate walls and access new sources of possibilities: the insights, visions, ideas and opinions of clients, partners, consumers and scientific and academic communities. They help you build consumers’ loyalty, form new partnerships, improve products and identify more business opportunities.
Global interconnections and a broad array of digital devices have made these initiatives easier. Nonetheless, such programs have repeatedly been a source of frustration for leaders, managers and participants. This happens when they fail to reach and engage their target audience; when facilitators lack the capacity to manage complex – and large volumes of – information, as participation grows; and when the ideas presented fail to match the company’s reality and, therefore, are of no consequence.
Worst, although you establish some kind of contact with the public, the connection proves fickle, and you end up wasting trust capital. Along the way, you also waste time and money.
So, how can you make sure you attract the right audience for your challenges? How can you capture related, valuable insights?
Get ready to fight for your customers
In the paper ‘Open innovation and the fight for you audience‘, I take you through the challenge of creating your own ecosystem and measuring the market, as well as taking consumers’ pulse and gathering meaningful content to establish new or improved routes to your market. The two main chapters cover:
1. The value and promise of open innovation in the business world
From brand awareness and customer engagement to the search for fresh answers or technology scouting, you will understand why open innovation has become trendy. We take note of companies trying to form new virtual ecosystems – a growing number, according to Accenture’s annual report on the outlook of global technology trends, ‘Technology vision 2015’.
We also address the existing expectation gap, which is all too often a source of frustration for both managers and participants.
2. Ways to create value networks
Next, we focus on specific solutions that make your initiatives work and deliver results efficiently. We share tools and guidelines that can help you capture a big enough audience, make sure it’s the right audience for your challenge and keep participants engaged until you achieve real outcomes.
We include relevance, incentives, communication and process governance best practices to craft your initiatives carefully.
Open innovation initiatives are not automatic and self-running procedures. They are borne out of strategic thinking and perfected by practice in integrating ideas and skills and reaching good levels of engagement and meaningfulness, as well as carrying out the work involved in converting promises into results.
That said, across all industries, smaller and larger companies (including your competitors) are looking right now for better ways to connect with customers who are themselves feeling overwhelmed with choices and very actively giving their opinions. Organizations want to make sure they attract – first and more effectively – perceptive and involved clients and communities, as well as their ideas, insights and suggestions on how to make brands and products evolve to meet shifting needs and aspirations.
You may lose the occasional battle, but your future success hinges on winning over your audience.
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Pedro da Cunha, a co-founder of Exago, had a clear passion for innovation since he began a career in researching robotics. He later worked as a consultant and business manager in firms focused on information technology and management consulting. He’s been involved in creatively applying technology and developing progressive corporate ventures throughout a career spanning multiple countries and industries. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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