The newsletters of Adam Hartung

Keynote Speaker, Managing Partner, Author on Trends

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Put some Fireworks in your Business Innovation!

by | Jul 19, 2016 | 0 comments

Did you sample the televised fireworks broadcasts on July 4th? Ratings confirmed that over 17 million people tuned in to the national broadcasts, and millions more watched locally broadcast displays as well.  Advertisers have capitalized on this growing audience.

Why are more people watching these shows?  What happened to the picnic blanket and the concussion of loud shells?  In a word: Trends.

The rise of reality shows where we are the spectator, rather than participant, is one important trend.  The addition of popular live entertainers to the broadcast makes watching events televised can offer more than being there in person.  And the new use of technologies such as stop frame cameras, slow motion, instant replays, and commentator overlays heightens the offering – the experience – beyond being there live.

Viewers don’t need fireworks displays, but they do want patriotic entertainment on Independence Day.  The sights, sounds and smells of a live display are great, but just one way to fulfill this want.  And once experienced live, people realize there is little new on the second, or third viewing.  Further, viewers don’t want crowds, bugs, travel time, cost, etc.  The trick for marketers is to look beyond what we think our customers need (the display) and offer customers what they want. Connecting the entertainment industry, automated remote technology and video technology has created a new experience that in many ways exceeds the original product.  It moves beyond the need and gives customers what they want.

Wants plus Trends equals Wishes

Customer Wants + Trends = Fulfilling Wishes

Satisfying customer needs is the minimum requirement – the ante to get in on the sale.  But the competitor that satisfies customer wants is differentiated – and can win more often.

Just look at some notable competitors that met customer needs, but lost out to those who focused on wants:

Sears– missed online sales despite being the original “at home” marketer with its historic catalogues
Microsoft– missed the social media market even though Internet Explorer opened the door for explosive internet use and eventually social media’s rise
Sports Authority– invented the sports focused retail store, but missed the shift to e-commerce and portals as direct marketing tools for vendors
Borders– Won the bookseller wars against B. Dalton and others, but then actually created its ultimate competitor by hiring Amazon to manage its ecommerce business
Rand McNally – Dominated the retail mapping business, but failed to see that maps were merely a means to an end, as customers really wished for directions

The marketer’s job is to anticipate customer wants, and tie to trends in order to deliver those wants.  By linking wants and trends you can deliver the Next Big Thing.  These companies didn’t look at how trends made it possible to move beyond what they perceived customers needed, to give them what they truly wished for.  They failed to ask “What if?” and then to use trends to deliver Customer Wishes.

Let us help you use trends to drive your innovation, positioning, organizational design, staffing, and culture to gain more revenues, higher profits and increased valuation.  By adding our trend expertise to your organizational knowledge, you can build a company that is future focused for greater success.

Don’t let the summer months slip by. Get a jump on your 2017 planning by having us help you identify key trends and how they will impact your future growth.  Give us a call in July, mention this newsletter and receive a 20% discount on all services.  Our summer guarantee – We’ll give you the key trends and impacts – or there is no charge!!

Send an email now, or pick up the phone and call us at 847-331-6384 or 847-331-6446.

It’s more economical than you think, and the payoff can be extraordinary.  Act like Amazon, and build a mountain of future value while others wait to be shown the way.

“The iPhone is a niche product.”

Olli-Pekka Kollasvuo
CEO, Nokia

 For more on how to include trends in your planning, I’ve created a “how-to” that you can adapt for your team.
See my Status Quo Risk Management Playbook.

Where Trends Meet Lie Great Opportunities

Where Trends Meet Lie Great Opportunities

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