Friday, July 27, 2007

Innovate to Differentiate

Innovation is the key to success in the 21st century. There are lots of reasons for it. Nowadays product life cycles (PLC) are truly getting shorter because of an increased number of competitors from here and abroad and their readiness to copy anything that seems to be taking off. Secondly, customers have become less brand loyal than they were before due to more options in the market place from the competitors.

Now there is no easy way out for the companies and they have to go for innovation of their products or services. This point is perfectly exemplified by Steve Jobs of Apple Computers who knew that electronic firms will rapidly come out with new iPod versions. But he is a Marketing Genius and instead of defending his innovation with expensive advertising, he defended with more innovation. He upgraded the iPod to carry photos as well, while his competitors were only carrying music. Then he moved on to video. This helped him to keep his competitors like Toshiba’s iRiver at bay and also his product development keeps the competitors always lagging.

The same marketing magic is being worked by Howard Schultz of Starbucks who continues to add new innovations to the coffee service business.

In this way two things are happening simultaneously –

1. They are saving some extra bucks on marketing.
2. By innovation they are increasing the product life cycle by introducing new variants in their existing product line.

Now talking about Innovation, it can be in many ways like in case of Car company “X”, they can innovate by introducing models with new variants, new color, new engine – altogether a whole new product but still keeping the core competency alive. Now for a customer, brand takes a back seat when they see new variants in the same price in the same segment but from other brands and they may opt for it. Now if company “X” had already innovated a new product in that category which no other competitor has done, then it could have capitalized on that and added new customers to its base. So we can see that how “INNOVATION is helping them to DIFFERENTIATE” from the competitors in the fierce competitive market.

If we take the present competitive scenario in any sector, we can understand that until and unless companies innovate their products or services, it’s very difficult for them to stay in the game. I will try to explain the above statement:

Lately mobile telephone operators are working on a new service segment called Voice Message Service (VMS) which clearly shows that to be in a competitive market, companies have to innovate new products, be in form of service or product to woo the customers.

Now if we again take an example of any company “X” which comes with this service first, has an edge over its competitors, especially in a telecom market like India which is highly competitive and customers to a very large extent are less brand loyal. Customers always want better and latest value added services. So when company “X” is going for VMS then it has a good chance of retaining its old customers and also add new customers. But company “X” has to make sure that it doesn’t stop innovating its services because the competitors are always in a look out to replicate the services which are taking off. So it should keep innovating new services to keep a step ahead of its competitors.



8 comments:

Sanjay said...

hey same nice blog man....u have written in a very simplified manner...1 suggestion to u buddy these things are already there in the market think of ur own strategies and innovation and how u would react in such an environment....good luck

ravikiran said...

thrz a simple mantra nowadays..."INNOVATE or EVAPORATE"..this is just an extension of the old english proverb "VAREITY is the SPICE OF LIFE"...

what if the innovation cud easily b copied by the competitors??? what r d options left for the innovator...

r thr any othr ways to get a compettive edge......

Sampad Kr Swain said...

Thanks for the comments.
Now to Ravi's answer I would like to say that yeah u r rite. And Innovation will be copied no matter how much u try to guard it(except for some cases whr it cant coz of patent issues n all)...thats where u have to understand the PLC of ur innovation and the strenghts of ur competitors...it can be easily done by BENCHMARKING ur relative strengths and weakness against the competitors and then to create that amount of competitive edge.
I will post another article on "DARK SIDE OF INNOVATION" where Innovate to die (or evaporate) is ritely mentioned. Check out the space....

Deborah said...

Nice site Same.

Famed you and your blog on BTF =)

Keep up the great work!

GuRu said...

Hey Buddy u have gr8 skill of writing , keep up da gud work.... but don only stick to these topics but do innovate urself n try to reach every aspect of business. I liked your blog.... Gud luck!!! will visit again 4 more.... keep BLOGGING!!!!

Sampad Kr Swain said...

Thank you All!!
Your invaluable comments will definitely help me in writing more articles like these in different aspects.
Again thanks a ton.

Espreson said...

I don't understand one thing that is competition. Why do we compete with each other?
If my product or service is better I need not have to think a lot.
Everyone is struggling to be no.1, and that's the main problem.

Anonymous said...

hey sam wld like to support you to answer ravikiran...one good alternative can be coming up with the innovation and following the strategy of market skimming(if ur product is really differentiable)...go for skimming with high margins and in case ur compititors imitate, just drop the product and come up with a new one and by the time you must have made a lot of money....moreover its the brand image that is ur only guard against imitation

Friday, July 27, 2007

Innovate to Differentiate

Innovation is the key to success in the 21st century. There are lots of reasons for it. Nowadays product life cycles (PLC) are truly getting shorter because of an increased number of competitors from here and abroad and their readiness to copy anything that seems to be taking off. Secondly, customers have become less brand loyal than they were before due to more options in the market place from the competitors.

Now there is no easy way out for the companies and they have to go for innovation of their products or services. This point is perfectly exemplified by Steve Jobs of Apple Computers who knew that electronic firms will rapidly come out with new iPod versions. But he is a Marketing Genius and instead of defending his innovation with expensive advertising, he defended with more innovation. He upgraded the iPod to carry photos as well, while his competitors were only carrying music. Then he moved on to video. This helped him to keep his competitors like Toshiba’s iRiver at bay and also his product development keeps the competitors always lagging.

The same marketing magic is being worked by Howard Schultz of Starbucks who continues to add new innovations to the coffee service business.

In this way two things are happening simultaneously –

1. They are saving some extra bucks on marketing.
2. By innovation they are increasing the product life cycle by introducing new variants in their existing product line.

Now talking about Innovation, it can be in many ways like in case of Car company “X”, they can innovate by introducing models with new variants, new color, new engine – altogether a whole new product but still keeping the core competency alive. Now for a customer, brand takes a back seat when they see new variants in the same price in the same segment but from other brands and they may opt for it. Now if company “X” had already innovated a new product in that category which no other competitor has done, then it could have capitalized on that and added new customers to its base. So we can see that how “INNOVATION is helping them to DIFFERENTIATE” from the competitors in the fierce competitive market.

If we take the present competitive scenario in any sector, we can understand that until and unless companies innovate their products or services, it’s very difficult for them to stay in the game. I will try to explain the above statement:

Lately mobile telephone operators are working on a new service segment called Voice Message Service (VMS) which clearly shows that to be in a competitive market, companies have to innovate new products, be in form of service or product to woo the customers.

Now if we again take an example of any company “X” which comes with this service first, has an edge over its competitors, especially in a telecom market like India which is highly competitive and customers to a very large extent are less brand loyal. Customers always want better and latest value added services. So when company “X” is going for VMS then it has a good chance of retaining its old customers and also add new customers. But company “X” has to make sure that it doesn’t stop innovating its services because the competitors are always in a look out to replicate the services which are taking off. So it should keep innovating new services to keep a step ahead of its competitors.



8 comments:

Sanjay said...

hey same nice blog man....u have written in a very simplified manner...1 suggestion to u buddy these things are already there in the market think of ur own strategies and innovation and how u would react in such an environment....good luck

ravikiran said...

thrz a simple mantra nowadays..."INNOVATE or EVAPORATE"..this is just an extension of the old english proverb "VAREITY is the SPICE OF LIFE"...

what if the innovation cud easily b copied by the competitors??? what r d options left for the innovator...

r thr any othr ways to get a compettive edge......

Sampad Kr Swain said...

Thanks for the comments.
Now to Ravi's answer I would like to say that yeah u r rite. And Innovation will be copied no matter how much u try to guard it(except for some cases whr it cant coz of patent issues n all)...thats where u have to understand the PLC of ur innovation and the strenghts of ur competitors...it can be easily done by BENCHMARKING ur relative strengths and weakness against the competitors and then to create that amount of competitive edge.
I will post another article on "DARK SIDE OF INNOVATION" where Innovate to die (or evaporate) is ritely mentioned. Check out the space....

Deborah said...

Nice site Same.

Famed you and your blog on BTF =)

Keep up the great work!

GuRu said...

Hey Buddy u have gr8 skill of writing , keep up da gud work.... but don only stick to these topics but do innovate urself n try to reach every aspect of business. I liked your blog.... Gud luck!!! will visit again 4 more.... keep BLOGGING!!!!

Sampad Kr Swain said...

Thank you All!!
Your invaluable comments will definitely help me in writing more articles like these in different aspects.
Again thanks a ton.

Espreson said...

I don't understand one thing that is competition. Why do we compete with each other?
If my product or service is better I need not have to think a lot.
Everyone is struggling to be no.1, and that's the main problem.

Anonymous said...

hey sam wld like to support you to answer ravikiran...one good alternative can be coming up with the innovation and following the strategy of market skimming(if ur product is really differentiable)...go for skimming with high margins and in case ur compititors imitate, just drop the product and come up with a new one and by the time you must have made a lot of money....moreover its the brand image that is ur only guard against imitation

Friday, July 27, 2007

Innovate to Differentiate

Innovation is the key to success in the 21st century. There are lots of reasons for it. Nowadays product life cycles (PLC) are truly getting shorter because of an increased number of competitors from here and abroad and their readiness to copy anything that seems to be taking off. Secondly, customers have become less brand loyal than they were before due to more options in the market place from the competitors.

Now there is no easy way out for the companies and they have to go for innovation of their products or services. This point is perfectly exemplified by Steve Jobs of Apple Computers who knew that electronic firms will rapidly come out with new iPod versions. But he is a Marketing Genius and instead of defending his innovation with expensive advertising, he defended with more innovation. He upgraded the iPod to carry photos as well, while his competitors were only carrying music. Then he moved on to video. This helped him to keep his competitors like Toshiba’s iRiver at bay and also his product development keeps the competitors always lagging.

The same marketing magic is being worked by Howard Schultz of Starbucks who continues to add new innovations to the coffee service business.

In this way two things are happening simultaneously –

1. They are saving some extra bucks on marketing.
2. By innovation they are increasing the product life cycle by introducing new variants in their existing product line.

Now talking about Innovation, it can be in many ways like in case of Car company “X”, they can innovate by introducing models with new variants, new color, new engine – altogether a whole new product but still keeping the core competency alive. Now for a customer, brand takes a back seat when they see new variants in the same price in the same segment but from other brands and they may opt for it. Now if company “X” had already innovated a new product in that category which no other competitor has done, then it could have capitalized on that and added new customers to its base. So we can see that how “INNOVATION is helping them to DIFFERENTIATE” from the competitors in the fierce competitive market.

If we take the present competitive scenario in any sector, we can understand that until and unless companies innovate their products or services, it’s very difficult for them to stay in the game. I will try to explain the above statement:

Lately mobile telephone operators are working on a new service segment called Voice Message Service (VMS) which clearly shows that to be in a competitive market, companies have to innovate new products, be in form of service or product to woo the customers.

Now if we again take an example of any company “X” which comes with this service first, has an edge over its competitors, especially in a telecom market like India which is highly competitive and customers to a very large extent are less brand loyal. Customers always want better and latest value added services. So when company “X” is going for VMS then it has a good chance of retaining its old customers and also add new customers. But company “X” has to make sure that it doesn’t stop innovating its services because the competitors are always in a look out to replicate the services which are taking off. So it should keep innovating new services to keep a step ahead of its competitors.



8 comments:

Sanjay said...

hey same nice blog man....u have written in a very simplified manner...1 suggestion to u buddy these things are already there in the market think of ur own strategies and innovation and how u would react in such an environment....good luck

ravikiran said...

thrz a simple mantra nowadays..."INNOVATE or EVAPORATE"..this is just an extension of the old english proverb "VAREITY is the SPICE OF LIFE"...

what if the innovation cud easily b copied by the competitors??? what r d options left for the innovator...

r thr any othr ways to get a compettive edge......

Sampad Kr Swain said...

Thanks for the comments.
Now to Ravi's answer I would like to say that yeah u r rite. And Innovation will be copied no matter how much u try to guard it(except for some cases whr it cant coz of patent issues n all)...thats where u have to understand the PLC of ur innovation and the strenghts of ur competitors...it can be easily done by BENCHMARKING ur relative strengths and weakness against the competitors and then to create that amount of competitive edge.
I will post another article on "DARK SIDE OF INNOVATION" where Innovate to die (or evaporate) is ritely mentioned. Check out the space....

Deborah said...

Nice site Same.

Famed you and your blog on BTF =)

Keep up the great work!

GuRu said...

Hey Buddy u have gr8 skill of writing , keep up da gud work.... but don only stick to these topics but do innovate urself n try to reach every aspect of business. I liked your blog.... Gud luck!!! will visit again 4 more.... keep BLOGGING!!!!

Sampad Kr Swain said...

Thank you All!!
Your invaluable comments will definitely help me in writing more articles like these in different aspects.
Again thanks a ton.

Espreson said...

I don't understand one thing that is competition. Why do we compete with each other?
If my product or service is better I need not have to think a lot.
Everyone is struggling to be no.1, and that's the main problem.

Anonymous said...

hey sam wld like to support you to answer ravikiran...one good alternative can be coming up with the innovation and following the strategy of market skimming(if ur product is really differentiable)...go for skimming with high margins and in case ur compititors imitate, just drop the product and come up with a new one and by the time you must have made a lot of money....moreover its the brand image that is ur only guard against imitation