Reality Check – –
Have You Out-Innovated Your Customers?

Innovation is a critical survival technique. New strategies, tools, products, technologies are fun to grab hold of. But have you left anyone behind? Customers perhaps? When you’re moving at the speed of light it’s easy to think those who don’t keep up just don’t get ‘it.’ Word processing software is so productive, why do they even make pencils anymore? (We still use about 100 million a year.) Email is fabulous, why phone? (Oops, showing my age. Substitute Twitter) Online listings are always up to date. Why do 19 billion paper catalogs keep showing up in my mailbox? (At least it feels like my mailbox.) Innovation Reality Check. If you are in a dynamic product development environment your eyes might be so focused on the future that you miss opportunities in maturing markets simply because it seems passe’. (Buggy whips anyone?)

Physics, Ideation, Community & Entanglement

Inspiration is a funny thing. It comes from places you expect, don’t expect, and come to expect.  You have to be open to it. Defend it. And, on occasion, abandon it. Physics has been my muse for thinking about ways creative ideas might be better shepherded through an organization as we try to: Avoid concept death by committee. Avoid killing creativity through argument. Avoid ignoring the game changing idea. As I explored folks came to my rescue – building on concepts, offering encouragement, arguing kindly (and on occasion providing the needed fix). Very similar to the way discussions surrounding physics were described in Gilder’s Book. The discussion has spurred my thinking – and so this seemed like a good time to review where we are at. Strategies for Probing and Testing Ideas without Killing Them Thought experiments were a favorite of Einstein and Bohr in part because they help you to think … Continue reading

Marketing Should Be Everywhere All The Time

Dr. Kantor over at calls for everyone to be in marketing during a recession. I agree completely, but for those who know how I rant my next question is obvious: Why only ‘in a recession’?  Driving the marketing discipline through your organization creates entanglements with customers deep down in the soul. It affects creativity in ways that are profound. Just think what would happen if your customer and prospects became an intimate part of your org chart. Creative chaos or intimate understanding?  Ah well, since we are in a recession I guess it is a worthy call to arms. Let’s just try avoid departmentalizing marketing once the economy is on a roll again.

Physics and Ideation: Customer Entanglement

I think the word ‘entanglement’ may be the best single word description of marketing at its best – no matter what your specialty. The word ‘entangle’ intrigues me. In physics it describes a mysterious connection that exists beyond visible physical contact. Imagine its meaning in marketing: Mutual Long Term Influence Even At Great Distance! We wish to increase customer entanglement. We need to be entangled with our co-workers. We entangle ourselves in the community around us. This is much more than a simple person-to-person or company-to-person relationship. It is mutual influence, dependence, respect, listening, griping, praising, changing, helping, learning. Entanglement is the ultimate feedback loop.  In physics – when you measure one entangled particle that somehow determines the state of the other. (Simplified, I know –  if you can say it better please do!) In marketing it is multiple, multiple-way connections. Whether in person, over the net, via tweets, during a … Continue reading