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No doubt you’ve been in meetings where a customer has said something like, “This would be an unbeatable product if only it _______.” I’ll let you fill in the blank.
Unless it’s a top-tier customer with lots of money at stake, the chance of one of these suggestions turning into a product feature is very, very small. Yet, companies receive ideas from customers all the time. And many of them are quite good.
Why? Because customers know what they need from the products they buy.
But even if individual ideas are not feature worthy, combining and analyzing them may reveal trends or needs you hadn’t considered before. And those revelations could lead to some competitive products and capabilities. Ingredient number 3 in this series on turning innovation into a core business process is simple: Embrace the voice of your customer.