Developing New Product Ideas with Lead Users
Co-Creation Innovation in the b2b adhesive industry
A global adhesive manufacturer wanted to develop new adhesive concepts for the b2b market in several countries. GIM launched a Co-Creation Innovation Process with lead-user craftsmen to generate a wide array of visualized and tested product concepts.
Our client was looking for innovations in all product categories, including carpenters, painters, varnishers, floor layers, and plumbers. One of the client’s main concerns was that the new product ideas should specifically address the needs of professional users.
GIM’s innovation experts suggested a multi-phase Co-Creation Process with innovative craftsmen (the lead-user approach).
In a two-day creative workshop, 10 lead-user craftsmen together with the client’s project team created a number of concrete product ideas at different innovation levels, from incremental advances to ideas for 2020. A professional illustrator simultaneously visualized these ideas.
Together with the client, GIM chose the most promising ideas and turned them into verbal concepts ready for marketing and testing.
The concepts were then tested in several focus groups with representative users/craftsmen, optimized by the team, and then tested again.
The USP of this research design is the screening for lead-user craftsmen. By employing a combination of a special battery of statements and face-to-face interviews – tried and tested in numerous GIM lead-user studies – we were able to make sure all respondents were creative and communicative innovators from within the target group.
So far, this innovation process has been carried out in three European countries, with 40 lead users generating ideas together with the client and some 120 representative craftsmen working on the developed concepts.
This very compact and effective innovation process allowed our client to collect new product ideas for their R&D department in a very time- and cost-efficient manner. Across the three countries, the GIM innovation process yielded a wide variety of visualized and tested product concepts, which the client’s product-development team could then take up and develop further. It was the first time our client had used the Co-Creation Innovation concept in this b2b product category.