It’s not just products

It’s not just products!
By Roger La Salle
Building a business
Research conducted by the Chief Scientist of Australia and no doubt by many other showed that companies that replace their products at the greatest rate, the most innovative if you like, are the ones the grow the fastest with the greatest profit.

Of course there are many competitions in Australia and elsewhere that promote the so called, most innovative companies. Indeed some actually charge a fee to enter such a competition which possibly “smacks a little like google Awards in paying to be noticed.

None the less, it doesn’t take a competition to see who are the most innovation operators in Australia. McDonalds would be my No1, a company that brings out some new product or a menu change or highlight on almost a weekly basis. Of course Apple, a company with no product in its stable much more than 12 months old are also at the top of the tree.

What else?
However, apart from innovating your products there are many other ways to achieve sustained growth, but many of these are overlooked or simple not on the RADAR of business executives clambering to stay ahead of the game.

Some of these include, complementing you offering, which is in effect selling something that captures the mind set of your customer.

Yet another is to accessorise you products or indeed accessorise the products of any successful business. The company Belkin comes to mind as a company one may well argue may not even exit but for the accessories it has developed for Apple and like products.

A further means for growth is to enhance the channel though which you communicate and reach your customer. For instance insurance companies and banks are perfectly places to achieve this but to date have been very poor in implementing this powerful growth strategy, possibly because they are too focused on their banking business and have failed to properly look outside the square.

Finally, there are new markets.
The world is a very small place these days with communication and transport now so fast, cheap and reliable.

An important way to grow your business is to grow your geographical foot print, but too often, again the pressure of survival in an ever a more aggressive environments restricts many companies, especially the smaller ones from properly addressing the search for new markers.

What now?
Perhaps the rate of product churn is powerful growth mechanism but new products can be a risky, costly and time consuming business.

Remember, new products are just one business growth strategy, ignore the others at your peril.
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Roger La Salle, trains people in innovation, marketing and the new emerging art of Opportunity Capture. “Matrix Thinking”™ is now used in organizations in more than 29 countries. He is sought after as a speaker on Innovation, Opportunity and Business Development, is the author of four books, and a Director and former CEO of the Innovation Centre of Victoria (INNOVIC) as well as a number of companies, both in Australia and overseas. He has been responsible for a number of successful technology start-ups and in 2004 was a regular panellist on the ABC New Inventors TV program. In 2005 he was appointed to the “Chair of Innovation” at “The Queens University” in Belfast.

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