Innovation and leadership concept

The Radius Innovation Ecosystem Accelerates Your Path to Successful Development Outcomes

Shari Aaron, Radius Insights, Radius Global Market Research 2021/08/shari-aaron-bio.jpg

by Shari Aaron

Executive Vice President, Growth & Innovation

Brand teams are being challenged by a range of complexities, from sourcing shortages to siloed groups working virtually across the globe. At the same time, they are tasked with developing solutions for their customers and clients that are sufficiently agile and modular to meet global demand in fast-changing environments.

The Radius Innovation Ecosystem combines impactful approaches with trusted partners delivering access to a range of advanced technologies, cutting-edge tools, and software solutions that drive efficiency throughout the research engagement. We embed experts in each innovation initiative to provide strategic guidance, ensuring the insights will meet internal expectations and customer demand. With seamless access to technologies including AI/GAI, AR, 3D printing, and product and packaging prototypes, our team designs tailored research solutions that guide innovation efforts from ideation to activation.

Our Innovation Sprint™ approach guides the process. Balancing speed with a research program tailored to client needs, Innovation Sprint helps us identify the optimal product or service opportunities to help brand teams get to market faster.

Where you are in the innovation journey will help you decide what type of research to pursue.

Deciding when to conduct innovation work depends on which stage of the innovation process, you’re in.

Our Innovation Sprint™ approach facilitates rapid ideation to help brand teams identify completely new ideas, or build on existing products or services at key points in their journey.

Identify the best way forward from the fuzzy front end.

Brand teams at the early stage of new ideas, or the “fuzzy front end,” need to make decisions about what they’re creating, who they’re creating it for, and why. These early sessions with key stakeholders guide innovation efforts, helping teams identify and meet the needs and preferences of their targets.

Developing and refining ideas.

Teams that have a solid concept for new products, services, or line extensions can move into the Innovation Sprint™ stage for iterative development, storytelling, validation sessions, market assessment, and diagnostics.

The goal of the research is to:

  • Explore new product or service ideas to generate growth.
  • Identify market gaps and find ways to meet customer/client needs.
  • Enhance existing offerings to maintain relevance and competitiveness.
  • Stay ahead of market shifts and industry trends by anticipating what customers will want next.
  • Gain a competitive edge in the market with customer-driven product and service innovations.

Our approach to innovation is centered on matching growth goals with customer needs.

Innovation is an iterative process that starts with gaining a sharp understanding of the brand team’s business objectives.

We begin with stakeholder interviews, talking with cross-functional teams to develop a full view of internal knowledge and goals. We also research both the competition and the current market landscape, using approaches like ethnographic interviews with customers to get input on pain points, barriers, and opportunities.

This phased approach helps us frame research that will support the best opportunities to meet customer or client needs, articulate brand differentiation, and drive competitive advantage.

Read more about the essential elements of innovation work, and explore a blog post we recently published on Innovation myths.

Aligning resources with project needs streamlines innovation work.

Each project is unique, requiring a tailored mix of methodologies to arrive at the best activation approach for our clients. Our Ecosystem draws from a wide range of disciplines and technologies to gain the most accurate research insights. Our approach includes:

  • Idea generation and concept development to gain diverse perspectives and select promising ideas for deeper exploration.
  • Qualitative sessions that generate customer input on perceptions, preferences, and needs.
  • Design input during immersive experiences to gain feedback on features that appeal most to customers.
  • In-depth interviews (IDIs) where we explore individual experiences, opinions, and emotions related to a product or service in detail.
  • Focus group discussions that enable us to hear about preferences and reactions to innovative concepts.
  • Ethnographic studies that bring researchers into participants’ natural environments to help them understand how they interact with products or
  • Co-creation workshops where participants collaborate to generate new ideas or solutions.
  • Real-Time Concept Optimization sessions that invite consumers to collaboratively refine features, messaging, and more.

Refining and optimizing new ideas to meet customer target preferences.

Identifying the ideal customer segments to explore is an essential element of our research. Ideation sessions bring new customer-focused ideas to the table. As the product or service gains shape, we can suggest the best methods for fine-tuning features, benefits, pricing, and other attributes to meet customer needs and expectations. Optimization is an essential element of our research that addresses every aspect of the product or service, from the way it’s designed to the messaging that will support it in the marketplace.

Brand growth relies on identifying market opportunities or white spaces that will meet consumer needs, but brand teams can’t operate in a silo. New offerings need to complement a brand’s existing portfolio. Part of the holistic research process is ensuring that products or services will help the brand thrive, and that the new innovations under consideration won’t cannibalize the brand’s existing lineup. We use tools such as advanced analytics to drive smart activation as we explore additional data that supports the product’s success.

Our holistic approach inspires teams to cultivate an innovative mindset and build a formula for predictable success. Combining data driven approaches with deep consumer engagement ensures products will appeal to target customers and fosters deeper brand loyalty.

Prototypes invite customers to experience products and services to provide feedback.

Testing concepts through surveys in the quantitative phase helps researchers validate data at scale to gain a more accurate picture of consumer response. As customer input and validation continue, our embedded experts explore the best ways to bring the idea to life for hands-on testing.

Prototype creation helps teams and consumers visualize a product’s viability. It’s an extremely useful tool for gaining experiential feedback. Similarly, usability testing brings an idea to consumers for evaluation. They can test various functions and provide input on user experience. If consumer feedback calls for significant updates, fast prototyping such as detailed sketches, engineering-grade models, or 3D-printing can provide quick updates for re-testing.

Providing consumers with hands-on access to models that are as realistic as possible helps those consumers generate more actionable feedback and opinions. Our Ecosystem partners can create functional or highly interactive virtual prototypes. From customer feedback to systems that can remotely measure physical engagement and other factors, we’re continually evolving our capabilities to deliver deep insights on a product’s viability.

The testing phase is a rigorous review of the product or service that simulates real-life situations, ensuring that innovative concepts will meet real-world demand.

Throughout the project, the focus is on successful activation.

Innovation engagements are often multi-phase events. Our objective is to maintain close communication with the brand team through each phase to ensure we’re on-target with their goals. Every step we take throughout the process is designed to help the team turn the insights we uncover into new products or services that will promote their brand’s overall growth.

Our embedded experts collaborate with teams and their target customers to design the best research approach, always with activation in mind.

Educational sessions help cross-functional teams embrace new innovations.

Getting to market first with a new innovation is a top priority for teams. We want to ensure that members of cross-functional teams across the organization understand the insights related to the research we’ve conducted on the new product or service.

We host sessions to provide a deep overview of the insights, providing team-focused reports and learning sessions where our experts guide stakeholders through the findings.

In these sessions, we gain alignment across teams and with leadership to ensure that key opportunities for the product are taken advantage of.

To help teams grasp the new product or service, we provide insight visualizations, along with dynamic and immersive visual stories and videos that convey complex information quickly.

Our learning programs are tailored to help teams absorb insights about the findings, whether they’re launching a product or service line extension or taking on a transformational innovation.

Our partnership nourishes your brand team’s innovation mindset.

Helping teams move from the drawing board to launch is an amazing experience for us. As we evolve, we can manage more of the process for our clients. The result for you is the gift of additional time to spend on elements of your innovation program that are most important to your team, while we take care of details such as getting your prototype ready for review.


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