110 Tactics to get an edge…..

Old man group

I attended a session on innovation ‘ecocultures’ this morning and it prompted me to return to this half completed blog to finish my thoughts…….

In 2015 Doblin introduced Ten Types of Innovation to articulate “a way to identify new opportunities beyond products and develop viable innovations”.

For many years innovation was seen as simply developing new products or services to bring to market….. and even more narrowly as new technologies being brought to market – a view crystallised by the explosion of Silicon Valley output since the early 1970’s [Intel’s first microprocessor was born in Nov 1971] and the dot.com boom that peaked in 2000.

However…… Innovation exists, no………  is essential, in so many areas of business and social endeavour as an existential force.

To list the Ten Types of Innovation as discussed and expanded by Doblin:

The 10 Types of Innovation  – click for a Dean Craven Services downloadable pdf.

  • Profit Model – How you make money
  • Network – How you connect with others to create value
  • Structure – Harmonising your talents and assets
  • Process – How you use signature or superior methods to do your work
  • Product Performance – How you develop distinguishing features and functionality
  • Product System – Bundling products and services
  • Service – How you support and amplify the value of your offerings
  • Channel – How you deliver your offerings to customers and users
  • Brand – How you represent your offerings and business
  • Customer Engagement – How you foster compelling interactions

These Types of Innovation are further broken down into 110 tactics to be incorporated within your plans.

MultiScreen Monitoring

Some key findings from Doblin’s analysis of innovation performance….. :

  • Innovation mostly fails. It doesn’t need to. You shouldn’t let it.
  • Innovation almost never fails due to a lack of creativity. It’s almost always because of a lack of discipline.
  • The most certain way to fail is to focus only on products. Successful innovators use many types of innovation.
  • Successful innovators analyze the patterns of innovation in their industry. Then they make conscious, considered choices to innovate in different ways.
  • Innovations can be broken down and analyzed.
    When you do so, you will learn why most fail and a few succeed.
  • Innovations can be built up systematically.
    Doing so increases your odds of success exponentially.

Their take-aways – and the basis of their further work……


  1. UNDERSTAND ALL TEN TYPES Virtually all projects can improve just by knowing and deeply understanding the value and subtleties of each of the types.
  2. DE-EMPHASIZE RELIANCE ON PRODUCTS AND TECHNOLOGY These are the easiest capabilities for competitors to copy.
  3. THINK ABOUT CATEGORIES AS WELL AS TYPES Consciously try to imagine new ways to configure assets, build platforms, and foster fresh experiences.
  4. USE THE TYPES THAT MATTER MOST Use diagnostics to understand which types you and others in your industry tend to overlook.
  5. UNDERSTAND WHAT YOUR USERS REALLY NEED  User research can help you know what is relevant to customers and what surprises other types might help to deliver.
  6. USE ENOUGH OF THE TYPES TO MAKE A SPLASH  Using five or more types, integrated with care, is nearly always enough to reinvent a category and become newsworthy.

Almost all of the enterprises identified as leading innovators routinely use multiple types of innovation — and handily outperform the average firms that innovate more naïvely, such as pouring R&D dollars into a new product as their only strategy.

Planning WhiteBoard

The message is clear…..

It makes sense for those of you that sit at the technology seat within the “Innovation Eco-System” –  that you should GET ORGANISED and COLLABORATE with like-minded souls with differentiated skills to ensure you have as many bases covered if you want to optimise your chances of success.

If you sit within an organisation and you are struggling to get traction for your ideas, the same is true.  Collaborating with colleagues on a cohesive suite of improvements will get more attention and the greater chance of support from the decision makers.

Of Course, collaboration is difficult and mis-trusted in many quarters…. and I’d like to hear from you on how to best foster and achieve sensible and mutually beneficial collaboration – particularly for early stage companies and start-ups.

I’d be pleased if you would leave your comments below.

About Dean Craven
With many years experience of delivering strategically important transformation programs, Dean Craven Business Services now works with companies that are serious about delivering growth in their particular markets, as well as mentoring start-ups in his local economy.  Dean is, in no way, associated with Doblin or its products.
Doblin, the innovation practice of Deloitte Consulting LLP, brings together a wide range of specific capabilities, tools, and people to help our clients in their efforts to solve their toughest challenges. www. doblin.com

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