How to Make Innovation Work: Building Your Strategy With an Outcome-Driven Approach


Innovation is necessary for any company to stay competitive in today’s marketplace. But, with so many moving parts, knowing where to start and if you are on the right track can be difficult.  In this post, we’ll take a look at how to apply an outcome-driven innovation strategy to product development.

Outcome-driven innovation and jobs-to-be-done

Outcome-driven innovation and jobs-to-be-done

The jobs-to-be-done (JTBD) framework is based on the idea that customers do not buy products for their features, but because they fulfill a need that results in an outcome. What this means is that even if two products are the same on paper, customers will purchase one over the other depending on which outcome is better for them.

From a product standpoint, this means that success isn’t just about developing new features to improve an existing product – it’s about finding ways to improve outcomes. You could have an amazing feature that solves all of your customer’s problems, but if it doesn’t produce the desired outcome more effectively than another product, they’ll still purchase something else.

This means that innovation efforts should be focused on understanding what your customers want to accomplish and how a new or existing product can help them achieve this goal more effectively.

Creating an innovation strategy

Creating an innovation strategy

What is innovation strategy anyways? In your business, it is the route you choose to take when it comes to future product development. It focuses on questions regarding whether you will focus on improvements or new products as well as how you will bring these products to market.

1. Don’t just focus on activities

Many companies just focus on activities because they are something tangible and controllable. In order to develop a winning innovation strategy, you need to know what your customer’s needs are, which needs are unmet, and how customers with different unmet needs are differently segmented.

2. Use an outcome-driven approach

By understanding what customers are trying to accomplish with your product, you can identify where they are receiving value and how this changes when certain outcomes aren’t met. You’ll also want to take note of the specific jobs that need to be done in order for these values to be achieved – even if it is just a feeling.

By taking a close look at the jobs that need to be done in order for customers to achieve these outcomes, you can develop products and services that are more effective at solving certain problems. This means focusing on providing solutions instead of just building features.

3. Understand what customer needs are

Needs are just metrics that customers use to gauge how well their job was completed with a product. The typical customer uses between 50 and 150 of these metrics for any given job they are trying to complete. In other words, customer needs and desired outcomes are the same things. This is why it is so important to use an outcome-driven approach when it comes to innovation.

By choosing an outcome-driven approach and applying the JTBD framework,  you’ll be able to find unmet needs and underserved market segments. This will lead you toward creating products that deliver more value than your competition’s offerings, which means a better outcome for the customer. Most companies lack these customer insights, so make sure you take advantage of this proven approach to stay ahead of your competition!

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