SXSW Interactive – Sparking Innovation Takeaways

As you may know by now, several members of the Campaign Consultation team attended the SXSW Interactive conference this March.  As promised, we are delivering you some of the newest information in interactive media today!

We are pleased to share with you a sampling of  sessions that the Campaign Consultation team attended.

Exploiting Chaos – How to Spark Innovation during Crisis
Presented by Jeremy Gutsche

Chock full of statements and stories — this session focused upon sparking innovation.   Here are some takeaways:

Statement: Popular is not cool!

Next time a salesperson comes up to you as you look at item and says “that’s one of our most popular models” – don’t buy it!  It’s not cool and it’s not innovative.  It’s already in the mainstream.  Build products and services that are better and haven’t been done already.

Story: Crisis = Opportunity

People do buy during crisis, they just purchase more carefully.

Fortune Magazine was founded three months after the Crash in 1929.  One issue cost as much as a woolen sweater at the time, but people bought.

Buying an issue of Fortune Magazine was a careful purchase, seen as an investment for helping the customer get back on their feet financially.

Statement: Innovation shakes up the status quo

For example, TV Broadcasting has been disrupted to Viral Video.  Doctors are being seen as replaced by Nurse Practitioners;  America’s status quo is being supplanted by China’s innovation.

Successful industries, professions, countries, etc.  innovate beyond optimizing their position on their “hill”.  They find “new topography and  different hills” upon which to present new concepts/products.

Statement:  We all need to be “more open to the complete possibility of what could be” – Ferrari.

To stay open to the possibilities, innovate in different areas.  Ferrari is known for designing cars, but he also painted, designed interiors, created fashion, etc.

Statement:  Embrace loss.

Foster a culture where some ideas are expected to fail.  Establish a “Gambling Fund” for hairbrain ideas.  If a staff person presents an idea that qualifies as “hairbrain”, a grant of time and money can be made for that person to pursue.

Statement: Obsess about your customers

What do customers want? Watch them.

Story: In the late 60’s, gas stations wanted to expand their business beyond clean, efficient pump services.

They began watching people as they paid.  It was noticed that rarely did adults purchase anything else but gas.  What was discovered is that teenage boys “shop” at gas stations. Adult women were interviewed to determine how they’d react to items being sold that would appeal to young males.  Their responses were neutral.   Sundry shopping at gas stations was born.

The goal is to obsess about a group of people and study what they do.  Then, make your brand irresistible to them without offending other target groups.

Statement: Obsess about your story.

Keep it simple and answer – why you?  Then supercharge your story so that people have to immediately tell others about you!

by: Linda Brown Rivelis, President