Tis the season to be jolly”,…. and most retailers are probably going “tra lah lah”. After a competitive year where we did a lot of brand trackers, competitor studies, deep dives into retail data and consumer research, we just could not resist sharing a couple of AHAs we learnt on some of our market research projects. So here is our favorite tidbit of a takeout we’d like to share….(for free!) wink*

The buzz word this year has been innovation. Brands want to know how they can innovate to stay ahead of the curve. (and yes… it is often tossed around in that same generalized, non-specific way I have just used the term)

On probing deeper, it became clear that many times what clients were really asking was, “How can my brand keep up with my customers use of technology?”  While this is a valid question it may not necessarily have been the right question to ask at that point in the business.

Often times the real answer or insight the client was actually searching for is, “How do I make sure my customers are still choosing me over my competitors?”  and that may not necessarily be answered by what new apps or trends are consumers latching on to.

So here is the free lesson we’d like to share!

The danger in choosing the sophisticated “tech-led-innovation” question approach is that you may quite easily lose your value proposition as you try to keep up with tech trends that bombard consumers daily. Remember while tech and innovation in retail is constantly evolving, human behavior hasn’t changed quite as fast; and last we checked nearly 100% of customers or end users tend to be human.

And because its Christmas here is the bonus insight we would like to give (again for free!)…. The one thing that must always be front and center for every business is the answer as to why your customers choose you over everybody else.

Brand Innovation (whatever your interpretation of it) must never lose sight of the brand’s unique value or core asset. It must sharply focus on this; track the pulse, monitor the pressure, and most importantly perfect on this for the sake of the brand’s health. Only then can a brand find the legs to build in the tech to enhance that value proposition to consumers and not change it into something else.




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