How do you escape innovation hell?

At the 9th Annual Razorfish Client Summit, Razorfish Strategy executive Joe Crump asked a simple question: why can’t we innovate more often?  His premise: innovation, like pornography, is something we recognize easily when we see it — the Virgin Galactic, the customized Dell laptop, or just about anything Pixar creates.  But even when top marketers and designers try to innovate, 80 percent fail.  He stated many reasons why:

  • We mistakenly equate innovation with creativity, which makes innovation feel more like serendipity
  • We don’t really try to innovate. Most of us are just content making incremental improvements to our work
  • We measure the wrong things.  We obsess with click-through rates instead of wowing the consumer with brilliant engagement.
  • We use the wrong tools.  Focus groups are the enemy of innovation.
  • We rely on processes that kill innovation.
  • We equate innovation with advertising.  As Joe put it, “If I were in the television ad business, I would assume the crash position.”

So, if what Joe says is true, what’s the answer to actually innovating?  In a word, experience.

Innovation Hell by Joe Crump, Group VP Strategy & Planning, Razorfish from Razorfish on Vimeo.

“Stop obsessing on marketing messages, and start obsessing on better product experiences,” Joe said.  Then he gave a preview of the Razorfish Experience Wheel, a new process that Razorfish is developing to create fresh consumer experiences.

And then Joe did something quite remarkable.

in TED-like fashion, he challenged Client Summit attendees to share with Razorfish a business problem, a global problem, or just something that plain bugs you.  Razorfish will spend the next year using the Experience Wheel to create an innovative solution the problem.

Want to play?  Please send your problem to  Joe will do the rest.  We’ll report back to you in about a year.

1 thought on “How do you escape innovation hell?

  1. Pingback: Razorfish : “Send us your Business Problem” « Amnesia Blog

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