What sounds like a New Age approach to public relations is in fact a bona fide approach to sustainable innovation, and researchers Fenn and Raskino promote a framework that will enable companies (and their heads of marketing/research and development) to determine and support the success of new products and services. One of the most telling examples early on is the contrast between British supermarket retailers Safeway and Tesco in the debut of customer-loyalty cards: the former, abandoning it after four or so years; the latter, changing its approach to business based on the card’s data—and, by the way, realizing significant growth. Part of the success, underscore the authors, lies in the company’s perseverance to an idea with merit; other contributing factors include attention to performance, internal integration, a focus on ROI, and the concept’s market penetration. Yet the most telling form of successful innovation relies on adopting the “street” approach—Scope, Track, Rank, Evaluate, Evangelize, Transfer—a way of business life best epitomized by Wal-Mart’s dedication to operational efficiencies and Nike’s design excellence. --Barbara Jacobs
About the Author
Jackie Fenn is a vice president and Gartner Fellow in Gartner Research. She focuses on innovation management issues and emerging technology trends. Mark Raskino is a vice president and Gartner Fellow in Gartner Research, specializing in emerging trends.