Innovation is extremely important for the long-term success of any business, no matter what the industry. Any new company needs to introduce something fresh to the market to fill a gap and provide an exciting alternative to what’s already out there, to draw customers into their product or service.
However, as RSM points out, innovation is also important for large, established companies. The paradox here is that if a business is growing and successful, does it need to innovate or will that risk having a negative effect? More times than not it will be beneficial at every business level.
In order to start a new business, you’ll need an innovative idea. This needs to be a business idea and model that hasn’t been done before (or if it has, then you need some kind of twist that makes your business special or unique). There’s no point starting a new company that does exactly the same as others on the market, unless you’ve found a way to price it more competitively or genuinely provide better products or services.
Having a strong idea is just the start though, bringing it to reality is the actual innovation. For start-ups, this must be feasible and cost-effective to make it work. Setting yourself apart from the competition while doing enough to encourage further innovation to help ensure growth is vital.
One study has shown that 90 per cent of executives believe the long-term success of their organisation relies on the ability to develop new ideas. This is important for SMEs to avoid them going stale and hampering growth. There’s only so far that new products or services can reach, whether it’s within a domestic market, before it outgrows it.
Sometimes start-ups can grow and develop to a point where they become complacent and are happy to continue as normal. This can be fine for a while, but through a lack of innovation it will be a lot harder to attract new customers and clients, while existing ones may be more likely to look elsewhere if they see your competitors doing more exciting things. You don’t need to completely rewrite your business model, but little adjustments can help.
Innovation doesn’t have to mean creating a new product or service, it can be something as seemingly simple as introducing new internal processes. This is where large, established businesses can find ways to improve through innovation. Sometimes it will be through the creation of a new product or service but plenty of the time it can be streamlining internal processes.
Anything that makes a large business work in a more efficient manner, that can save money at the same time, is definitely worth considering. At the top-level innovation helps global leaders remain in place and continue to outdo the competition.
Whatever the size and state of your business, innovation is incredibly important for its long-term success.