It is always easier for a company/brand to imitate competitive products than it is to truly reinvent their respective product or category. As a result, progressive improvement is attained, but nothing truly innovate comes out of this type of product strategy.
When a brand is looking to build a product strategy, at the forefront of building this foundation is developing a Product Inspiration formula that allows your designers (Industrial/Graphic) the freedom to create without limitations. You should always have a structured seasonal front end loading process with your required product line planning, competitive analysis and “key” product/category drivers, however you should always look to drive product innovation through this free flowing creative process. This begins and ends with design inspiration. This inspiration should come from and feed off of adaptable technologies, design cues and bloodlines from products that drive your brand. If you are truly a performance driven brand, then look for aspects of your product that come from or could be derived from other performance products, not necessarily from your industry. When we design, our intended purpose is to disrupt the norm, and create outside the boundaries of what has been done before in our industry. Your ability to give the consumer what they never knew they wanted, but have to purchase is the magic formula for success.
“Innovation distinguishes between a Leader and a Follower”
This creative product creation foundation assures your company/brand will have a pipeline of designs driven off your brands bloodlines, and innovation that allows you to stake a leadership position. Your intention should be to take that leadership position through innovation, and out-innovate yourself. Consumers will then look to your brand for true, authentic, market driving products.
Enjoy the Ride !
“Product Innovation & Marketing Success..”
Bryan Smeltzer is a successful consumer products business executive and entrepreneur. He has held executive-level roles in business development, product, and marketing with some of the world's most prestigious brands, including; Oakley, TaylorMade, Adidas, K-Swiss, Schutt Sports, among other international brands. In addition, Mr. Smeltzer founded an apparel brand, successfully running a profitable business for ten years, eventually selling to a VC firm. He currently oversees LiquidMind Inc., a global brand strategy firm that partners with both start-ups and established brands to empower their businesses to think different, be different, drive a passionate culture, and execute relentlessly.