Consumers are the lifeblood of innovation. To honor the consumer is to fuel the very soul of innovation in earnest.
The Passion of the Consumer
How do we think about the consumer? The consumer is you. The consumer is me. The consumer is the business builder, the innovator, and the entrepreneur. The consumer is the daring soul who is willing to think about and articulate a way to bring a solution to an unmet need, to innovate and make things better than they are today. The consumer inspires us, challenges the status quo, and moves a dream and a brand forward.
We have it wrong in research. A consumer is not simply a respondent or a quota. Without consumers we have no business model, and no way to measure our observations. We are the ultimate observers, after all. Passionate consumers lead us to great innovation. So let’s get busy fueling more of that, shall we?
The Need for Vision
The greatest innovations are a result of a clear vision. That vision is usually the result of a burning desire to bring about positive change, to shift the norm of an industry, to disrupt our thinking and habits with meaning and impact. And lest we forget, this type of bold innovation is really just a chance to serve the consumer in a way that they have never been served before. It builds businesses, reputations, market-share. And social media gets a new trending topic.
Tesla, Nest, Apple, Uber, and AirBnB all win the innovation dialogue every day. Why? Not just because they honor a trend, or a dream, or the needs of a sharing economy. They honor a vision and passion, with a nod to knowing that the worlds’ consumers want something better and they’ll pay for it. This is innovation at its best; consumer-centered, dynamic and an emerging force of positive change.
How do we at Ipsos harness this energy and enthusiasm for positive change by way of consumer-led innovation? We love it when we get the chance to enter the innovation race at the front end. This is the very space where the idea is merely a whisper or a dream, yet it is certainly a strong belief that a unique opportunity awaits.
We leverage our front-end process to get closer to the client, the landscape, the passion for the growth of the business, and the consumer who will inform the ideas that fuel innovation.
We start with the consumer. We believe that the consumer is an immeasurable inspiration source. We collide with them where they are, or where they want to be. Not just behind the glass. In life, online, in their homes or businesses, and in the most creative environments we can find.
Our goal is simple. We listen. We listen intently if not empathically to their needs, wants, wishes, and beliefs that a better day awaits them. The articulate, imaginative, vulnerable, truth-telling consumer is a gift to behold.
Why is that? Well, quite simply, that inspired consumer gives us a chance to innovate and develop something that fills an unmet need and builds an innovation pipeline for a brand. And often that inspired consumer validates our belief that we can and should develop that product or service, and that we need to chase after the technology or intellectual property to do so. It isn’t just a dream or a whisper any longer; this is now an actual opportunity to innovate. And that is a potential goldmine.
When we seek to co-create with the consumer, and we honor them, we serve the needs not only of the consumer, but also of a business and brand, and we are rewarded with growth.
To empathically listen for that piercing insight, that passionate truth that enables us to solve a real consumer concern – that’s the good stuff about consumer research. That’s the beginning of a new brand story that moves from the consumers’ lips to our ears, and onto an idea screen or concept test, and into the market as a living, breathing brand once that consumer inspired idea is validated.
That’s the value of consumer inspiration; the very crux of innovation. We’re glad to be a part of it. Come join us, will you?