Because today's consumers are moved by a brand's voice, personality, and world as much as they are by specific product features, the innovation process must begin with the end in mind. We begin by assessing what brand imagery is missing from a category, then we drill down and ideate tangible product features that bring that imagery to life, and then we hand that information to R&D so that it can make prototypes. We've set the traditional process on its head.
But how do you know where exactly to begin? This is trickier than it sounds. In order to work, the imagery needs to resonate with consumers. It needs to touch them in a way that is meaningful to them and in a way that is fresh and interesting.
The key here is to tap into the potential energy of a situation. That energy comes from the tension created by the conflicts-the paradoxes-that are part of everyone's daily life.