Despite all the changes in business over the past few years, there’s one thing that remains the same. You either grow. Or you die. And with the economy suffering from years of sluggishness, marketers are under more pressure than ever before to drive growth.
The imperative for growth means most every company’s strategic plan demands new and more relevant innovations to be launched and marketed. So it’s no wonder the marketplace is experiencing an unprecedented number of new product launches. Yet despite every company’s hopes for growth from the launch of a new initiative, the track record of success is abysmal. Curiously, success rates are no better than they were 10-20 years ago.
In the following six tips to operationalize your company for speedier growth discover how to modify and refine your corporate strategy in order to launch products quickly and successfully in today’s chaotic economy.
1. Look for ways to deliver immediately to those to whom you sell.We all expect gratification more immediately---experiencing it as we do with overnight deliveries from Zappos, same day medical appointments at the Cleveland Clinic, instant Kindle and iTunes downloads. The more our culture experiences immediate satisfaction from others the more it becomes the standard all business is expected to deliver. If you don’t find a way, people will turn to others who can.
2. Use predictive modeling to pre-empt speed itself, figuring out what people want and giving it to them before they (or your competition) even know they want it.
3. Innovate faster by embracing faster methods of innovation—like crowd sourcing, and consumer co-creation.
4. Obsess over how to increase the velocity of every element of the marketing mix.Like, how to do research faster, prototype faster, fail faster, learn faster. It’s why many are moving their research online. Why Pop Up Stores now number in the thousands.
5. Adopt a business model that increases your speed.For many, maximizing speed requires the kind of control that only comes from greater vertical integration, the development of new capabilities, or acquiring them with a merger or acquisition. For others, business model transformation comes from changing to a more entrepreneurial culture. Others require a total re-org to a behavior-based business model, heavy on gathering, analyzing, and quickly leveraging insights from customer data.
6. Redefine risk.In today’s marketplace, being slow to react increases your risk. Risk is pulling back on the throttle when you need it most to increase your growth trajectory. Today, risk comes from NOT arguing, “we have to do this, and fast.” In many ways, “fast” means “first:” First to launch and grab dominant share. First to claim the category benefit. First to frame an argument putting others on the defensive. First to gather the behavioral data and leverage their insights. And when it comes to operationalizing for speed, there’s risk in not having a definition of “fast” to which everyone on a team is aligned.
The speed of today’s marketplace is the speed of light. However, by following the recommendations above your company will be able to take advantage of this velocity and optimize your brand’s marketing so as to leave your past, and your competitors, in the dust.
To learn more on the credos and analytics that drive new product launch success and decision-making, attend the October 3rd Brandworks University® Inside breakfast session at the World Business Forum New York.