It's hard to think about outside factors without considering the one that has affected virtually every aspect of our lives for three years. While the worst days of the pandemic are long behind us, it continues to influence individuals and has certainly changed our collective mindsets. Product innovations must be made within the context of how modern audiences respond. Likewise, it’s vital to consider a potential lack of consumer spending.
Furthermore, for businesses, the modern working environment has significantly changed, with more companies adopting remote working practices to accommodate the health and safety needs of their employees. Tools like KICKBOX facilitate cloud-based company-wide innovation that can support teams under all working circumstances - not least when WFH models are needed.
An awareness of what is already on the market and what other companies are doing has the ability to help or hinder your innovation. On the one hand, it can be very frustrating to learn that an idea has already been developed. However, it could stop you from investing time and money on an idea that is set to fail or could lead to legal action. You needn’t be disheartened by these obstacles either - even Apple had multiple failures before landing success.
Perhaps more importantly, appreciating the market can help identify a gap in it. It’s exactly what bottleplus did to disrupt the on-the-go beverage industry. You do not have to reinvent the wheel. In many cases, winning ideas improve upon existing ideas and make them better.
Local markets and environments
When hoping to disrupt an industry in a local market rather than a global one, it’s important to consider the impact of factors linked specifically to the territory. For example, Wohntraum set out to solve the problem of Germany’s low home ownership rate, which was the catalyst for their business model. However, it is just one example of how economic or political issues in a local market could help identify short or long-term opportunities and challenges.
A host of other outside factors fall under this category, including public infrastructure, government support, and public policy. Even when you have a truly global business model, understanding the contrasting landscapes between local markets will help fuel success.
While outside factors will have a huge influence on your future innovations, you must never forget that your added knowledge is ultimately there to support innovation within. Therefore, you must promote it with a truly company-wide approach that champions innovation as a part of your DNA.
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