So you have innovated your product or service, improving it in a way you know will move the needle in a positive way. The question now becomes: How do you get your customer to buy into your innovation?
There are plenty of examples of out there of companies that have innovated their product, brought it to market, and then have it fail miserably
- New Coke and the Ford Edsel are two examples. These products did not take into consideration that successful adoption requires their customers to change their beliefs or behaviors. Far too often people resist change, even when it is for the better.
- The innovation may not be compatible with existing workflows and practices; customers may prefer the status quo if the innovation requires learning new skills or altering long-ingrained routines.
- Customers view the innovation as being too risky and postpone adoption until the risk is mitigated - either by new knowledge or through the experiences of others who have shown that the innovation is safe.
- The innovation requires a customer to deviate from established social norms and traditions.
- A negative product image, whether deserved or undeserved, can produce a barrier to adoption.
Customers do not understand the value of the innovation.
So, how do you keep your customers behaviors in mind as you are innovating to avoid these barriers? Adjacent To One
, the team behind Mother May I
, recommends consistently testing your product or service to see how customers react and where they find issues or concerns with the changes you are rolling out. This testing allows you to react earlier in the product lifecycle and adapt faster to customers needs to increase your chance of success.
How have you overcome resistance to innovation with your products or services?