Friday, April 15, 2011

How do brands make use of Innovation Labs to get Market Share?

The once loyal consumers who used to swear by brands earlier are now open to switching, dating and even flirting with other brands - all thanks to modern trade. In such a dynamic market situation companies have to formulate newer strategies like the holistic marketing etc.

More and more companies are adopting the concept of Ignitor's raison d'etre. The executives from different parts of the globe and varied functionality join and work together to innovate the strategy which can keep the company ahead in competition.

In this wave of innovation labs scientists, engineers and marketers work on the same planet together keeping aside hierarchy and toy with ideas and answers in areas ranging from product creation to market strategy. The life cycle has shortened, an innovation today grows old tomorrow. But these labs provide common rethinking and work to redefine the rules of invention, innovation and engagement at a predatory pace.

In Bengaluru a city in southern part of India, Lenovo has a humongous centre - a marketing hub that takes care of the Chinese company's global marketing activities.

Thousands of miles away Google created the Creative Lab - a dedicated in-house ad agency for Google products and the brand.

The owner of brands like Pizza Hut, Kentucky Fried Chicken or KFC and Taco Bell, Yum! Restaurants has set up an innovation centre in Gurgaon near Indian capital Delhi where red circles on calendars read "Innovation Day" .

And in a Mumbai suburb, French automobile major Renault has a design satellite or in layman terms, a centre dedicated to intuitive car design, a concept that's in force across emerging markets including Brazil, Russia and South Korea.

Google :

'The Google Creative Lab has helped the Google, a company led by engineers and scientists to reshape its strategy from pure technology driven company to become one of the biggest marketing platform. The company originally was averse to marketing itself.

'The Google Creative Lab is a small team of creative programmers , writers, storytellers, filmmakers, art directors and digital designers. This lab has surprised with the work like the web video "Parisian Love" and Arcade Fire Meets HTML 5.

The philosophy of Creative lab is to simplify the complex ideas. The lab's role is to connect product ideas with the consumer. With changed approach in 2010 Google advertised heavily its browser “chrome” in all forms of media. The Google is most preferred search engine and does not need glitzy big-budget commercials.
 Mahindra - Renault :

Mahindra-Renault joint venture has nothing to speak other than Logan so far. According to Jean Phillipe Salar, the chief designer at Renault design India it takes three years to create a car - from blue print to manufacturing. Salar has designed the Renault Clio 2, the hatchback.

The studio in India started in 2008. To make up the lost time modellers and designers at the studio are engrossed in designing and creating mock car models to be launched from Renault stable in next few years. The team under Mr Salar knows that they have to compete with the brands which are present in India for far more years.

The Renault has six design studio across the world. The others are in Russia, Brazil, Paris, Bucharest and South Korea. Jean Phillipe Salar has worked across Paris, South Korea and Brazil before taking up the mantle in India.

The studio in India comprises a team of 12 people, designers from NID and International Academy of Design and Technology (IADT), Chicago and modellers , who are essentially engineers, graphic designers and colour and material specialists.

All the design studios across the globe get the same brief. These studios compete with each other to create the best car design. "The design that is the best - the one closest to the brief - is chosen and that is used globally."

Though they all get the same brief, but while designing local needs are given more priority. For instance, in Russia, consumers need something more functional and boxy. In India, customers want something that is well-balanced between design, cost, mileage and space.

Renault India is targeting the growing luxury car market in India. It plans to launch two cars this year - the 838, a sedan and the H45, a 4X4, to establish the brand in India.

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