Innovation is the driving force of progress. It’s what propels us forward into a better future, and it’s what keeps us on top of our game. But how do these new companies accomplish their goals? What are some of the most powerful innovation strategies? We’ll explore three different companies with innovative strategies that have helped them maintain their competitive advantage in recent years as well as how they did it.
When Airbnb was first launched, it was a new and innovative idea that shook up the travel industry. The hotel alternative helps travelers find unique accommodations in homes around the world for lower prices than hotels while also helping others make some extra money on their unused space.
Customers’ problems with hotels were that they were too expensive, not authentic enough and didn’t fit their unique needs. When they first came up with this strategy, they did so because they realized the market for those who wanted to rent out their homes as well as those who wanted to make traveling and finding lodging easier.
By looking at the market in this way, Airbnb was able to see where there was room for improvement – in both price and quality of lodging options. They also realized that travelers wanted more authenticity when it came to staying somewhere new while still understanding what amenities are available. Because they were able to understand what their customers were looking for, they were able to develop a product and service that impactfully created a solution for them.
Around the same time that Airbnb was gaining traction, Uber was also beginning to make waves as a new and revolutionary transportation company. What made them so successful is that they also identified a problem with the way transportation worked – it was difficult to get around in certain cities without having a car or knowing someone who could give you a ride. While cab companies were already doing this job for customers, what they weren’t doing was getting it done quickly, effectively, and safely.
Uber used these customer insights to develop a new solution to this problem. They used technology to create an app where customers could request transportation and track their driver as well as paying for rides without having cash on hand or worrying about the right change. By making it easier, faster, more effective and safer than cab companies were doing at that time, they created a service that helped them gain market share.
For drivers, Uber developed a product that was designed to make their lives easier. If a driver worked as a personal driver or for a cab company, they were losing out on money by only driving during certain hours. With Uber, drivers could work whenever they wanted and make more money as a result. This gave them the opportunity to be their own boss and have more control over their lives while getting paid more conveniently.
Toast is a very new yet very innovative company that changed the way that people ordered and processed payments at restaurants. Their suite of technology allows restaurants to track customers’ orders and collect data, input orders from a handheld device that automatically sends it to the kitchen and bar, and process customer payments without even leaving to get a receipt.
It is a restaurant’s job to deliver fast service, delicious food, and an excellent customer experience to get repeat customers. When they first approached the restaurant industry, Toast realized that there were major problems that restaurants faced due to the constraints of lack of technology. Their speed and efficiency were handicapped by their current processes.
By looking at the market in this way, Toast took advantage of what could be seen as flaws or problems with traditional methods and built a product that streamlined the process and made it easier for restaurants to focus on their food and service. They were able to do this by identifying what restaurants wanted, needed, and valued most – which was a simplified ordering process, data analytics to help them improve their business and optimize their menus, and convenience for their customers.
As these three companies demonstrate, successful innovation strategies boil down to one thing: they all focus on the customer. They also take into account customer input data ahead of time to find underserved markets. Only after they do this and ensure a product’s profitability do they actually begin to develop it.
For more information on how you can employ this strategy with your own business, click here: https://strategyn.com/innovation-strategy/