New Product Innovation: What it is, Why it matters, and How to get it right


Browse an unrivalled portfolio of real-time and historical market data and insights from worldwide sources and experts. Not only can innovation trainingbe an asset to you as a leader, but also to your team or business unit. Consider providing access to a course to your employees to equip them with the foundational knowledge for innovation.

Innovation helps you keep up with the market.Whether you innovate or not, other companies will. Every year, thousands — if not millions — of products are unleashed into the world. These range from brand new products to improvements on things that already exist.

How Amazon designed Project Kuiper to promote safe, sustainable operations in space

We know product innovation is not a walk in the park, but with hard work and commitment you can get better at it. There are also other types of innovation you can look into and plenty of resources we provide for those who want to make more innovation happen in their organization. For an in-depth look at the types of innovation and how to make it happen, download our ultimate guide to innovation. Simply put, identifying and understanding customers’ pain points can lead to major opportunities for improvement. Once you have understood the extent of these pain points it’s important to address them as opportunities for innovation, not as ways of mitigating damage. Sometimes it’s not enough to just ask yourself as your biases might hinder your judgment.

Classifying products as “innovative” isn’t just applicable to products like an iPhone or electric car, and it doesn’t require teams of experts. Innovation can be accomplished by anyone with an original and useful idea. In fact, an excellent way to foster innovation as a regular practice is to adopt a design thinking mentality. Assess the market by using a customer segmentation process to form a picture of your target customer, and determine the concept that may be the most profitable.

Product development

Not only are you competing with other brands that make comparable products, but also anything else that can perform the customer’s job to be done. Returning to the ice cream cone example, the customer could choose to hire water balloons, popsicles, or a day at the beach to do the same job of making summer memories as a family. Academic SolutionsIntegrate HBS Online courses into your curriculum to support programs and create unique educational opportunities. We can think of the Haier example from 1996 when consumers were complaining their washing machine hose was clogging. As it turns out many people in rural areas were having the same issue because they were using washing machines to wash sweet potatoes.

what is product innovation

Huawei is a Chinese tech company that designs, develops, and sells various telecommunications products, including smart devices and consumer electronics. In 2019, Huawei invested $19 billion into research and development, which paid off immediately since it sold more smartphones than Apple that year. Tesla’s innovation strategy resulted in impressive in-car hardware and software integration.

Successful CPG product innovations

Understanding your innovation’s viability can be harder than identifying pain points, but it’s another crucial factor in this process. Although product innovation is only one type, much can be gleaned from analyzing past product innovations. One of the biggest misconceptions of innovation is that it’s a modern concept.

  • Our easy online application is free, and no special documentation is required.
  • Product innovation involves incremental testing and refinement to figure out what works and what doesn’t.
  • Developers and designers develop new features to improve products and increase their frequency and adoption.
  • Even more, investing in unnecessary features that are not strategic and don’t add value could mean throwing money down the drain, harming the product and even the brand.
  • How are some companies succeeding at bringing these innovations to the market and why others fail?

Product innovation is the creation and subsequent introduction of a goods or service that is either new, or an improved version of previous goods or services. This is broader than the normally accepted definition of innovation that includes the invention of new products which, in this context, are still considered innovative. Digital innovation is an extremely important way to engage with new people and organize internal affairs at better means. Since market conditions develop in new ways every day, you need to catch that pace. Accelerating Digital Innovation helps you achieve this and introduce new products and services into the field. In order to make your product innovation particularly more customer-centric and successful, there is necessity for congruent mindset between different components of your company like marketing and sales.


Through this stage, the groundwork laid in the first two stages will guide the product design and development process. There are plenty of reasons making incremental improvements is the most common approach to product innovation. Product innovation refers to changes that improve design, materials, feel, look, capacity, functionality, and overall user experience.

what is product innovation

Our investments with ULA also will support infrastructure and service upgrades at Cape Canaveral, benefitting other commercial and government customers launching from Florida. Project Kuiper’s newest facility brings jobs and economic growth to Cape Canaveral while bolstering innovation within the commercial space industry. Beyond product innovation, in the last several years we have made significant investments in our ETF business that we expect to continue to pay off going forward.

How To Be Innovative in the Modern World

This was a good switch since targeting exclusively vegans would mean going out on a very small, niche market. Once you have the right people keep in mind that for innovation to happen, teams should be trained to strive for excellence. This is of course more complex, and it requires a certain environment that allows an innovation culture to flourish. Successful companies know that investing in training and developing their people will add to the outcome of the product. Speaking of the capabilities of your workforce, we’ll state the obvious, that you need to get the best people for the job. It’s important to look at products through the lens of jobs to be done because it can broaden your business horizons and help you identify new opportunities that others haven’t already tackled.

what is product innovation

However, some caught up pretty fast and as we’ve seen in recent years, Apple lost market share in front of Samsung. In turn, they have grown by adding other products what is product innovation and services, like iCloud, Apple Music and different earbuds and headphones. Redefine the competition by taking existing products to new channels or markets.

quick and easy(ish) steps to flawless product innovation

It’s a great example of an innovative product that solved both explicit and latent pain points. Before lightbulbs, products like lanterns and oil lamps produced light but made houses more susceptible to fires. At the time, these accidents were accepted as a necessary risk until innovation showed people otherwise. But its ability to capture customer data about which product configurations sell and which don’t is invaluable for product innovation. Like most facets of business operations, process automation and granular data reporting are at the heart of product innovation.