Why are some innovations more successful than others? Innovation success is never just about what is possible. It’s always about the choices customers and markets make from among what we can do. A key consideration when making the choices on which innovations to us is the “total utility” — which is defined as:
The sum of all benefits a customer gains from consuming particular goods or services minus the cost involved.
The innovation that offer more utility value will win, assuming you can communicate the value in terms that customer understands and agrees with. One approach that I’ve found useful in communicating the value of an innovation is based on Everett Rogers Diffusion of Innovations.
- Relative Advantage — How is the innovation better than what is being used today?
- Compatibility — Does the innovation leverage existing infrastructure and/or ecosystem?
- Complexity — Is the innovation easy for a customer to understand?
- Trialability — Can the customer try/test the innovation before committing?
- Observability — Will the customer be able to see/measure the benefit?