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Why Marketers Are Key Players in the Business Innovation Game

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With the growth of international competition, technology and eBusiness, consumers can find high quality products and services faster, cheaper and easier than ever before. Companies are facing extreme competitive pressures. To maintain a competitive edge, companies must continuously innovate. According to PricewaterhouseCoopers, innovative companies are expected to grow 60% in the next five years, while 20% of such firms are on course to double the global average growth rate. Clearly, innovation helps to drive revenue growth, and a key player in such business innovation is the marketing team.

Marketers’ unique role of talking directly to consumers, listening to the market and telling a company’s story makes them a critical component in the business innovation process. The audience insights that marketers are able to uncover enables them to not only participate in innovation discussions at their companies, but also to take a leadership role in trailblazing new directions for a company’s future.

True innovation is groundbreaking. It creates a new reality for consumers. Think about the smartphone. Twenty years ago no one imagined carrying around a small computer in his or her pocket everyday. Nor did people think that by 2014, 166 million people in the United States would own smartphones (Source: comScore). However, Apple saw an opportunity. In 2007, Apple introduced its first multi-touch device and in 2014 it owned the largest percentage of US smartphone subscriber market share.

Did you know, though, that Nokia had a touchscreen prototype before the iPhone was launched? Even so, its market share was merely 3% by 2013. With Nokia’s head start, how did this happen? One of the underlying reasons was a lack of innovation leadership from Nokia’s marketing team. Without keen insights into what its audience would value, Nokia allowed Apple…

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