The reason I am talking about this topic because Successful New Product introduction (Innovation) has been the key to success for organizations. In the recessionary times, it has become increasingly important for organizations of all the levels to develop and introduce new products more effectively. An agile and successful New Product development process (Innovation Management)
focuses on retrieving & using information & knowledge constantly from different sources.
In the recent years, organizations have seen the need & potential to tap in to data generated from various sources and use it back in there in fuzzy front end in Innovation Process E.g.
- Product Strategy and Portfolio: Product ideas, customer behaviors, VOC, QFD, product trends from the social networks and listening platforms, etc.
- Product Design & Validation: Use of warranty, quality, testing data to create information that feeds back into the NPD process.
- Product Prototyping and Testing: By reducing the physical prototyping and testing of the products and replacing it by virtual validation based on test correlation data.
- Product Support, Service, Phase out: e.g. MRO data.
The rapid development of newer economies, the need for having products which can cater to the ever changing demands in local market as well as global markets and the high role of information and technology in the entire life cycle of a product has commoditized it and the consumer has emerged the “King/Queen” where he/she drives the success or failure of the corporations. Additionally, tailored product portfolio to cater to different markets means understanding the requirements of the customers in these markets and design products which meet the expectations. Not only do these factor in from a customer & market perspective but added to this is the high global competition which places products very close to each other with very little to differentiate. It has become more important these days to connect with the “King / Queen” and the development in social media provides the platform for connecting with the customer in a big way. Connecting is not only sending updates what most of the organizations have been doing but it is more about getting inputs from the customer on what they like / don’t like about the current product, what they want from the new products or what are new ideas they have about products. It is also important to get inputs on the issues organization is facing and the feedback can be amazing…
It is very important to assess this information and convert into Knowledge (ream my previous blog on Engineering Knowledge Management). One thought that comes to my mind is Big Data Analysis. We can use Big Data Analysis to derive good information from the social media feed about our products and translate that into a Innovation input. these are just my initial thoughts on how we can use social media as input to innovation… and there are companies who are using it effectively but the companies in India subcontinent are far away from tapping this huge potential.
Conclusion: For organizations to be successful they will have to Innovate (bring new products / services / business models) . One of the big source of inputs for new products is feeds on social media and connecting them back to the product. It is required to analyse this information in a structured way and use it for organizations benefit. To know more about Innovation Management and learn best practices you can attend one day workshop on Innovation Management (www.PLMIndia.com/events)