If your innovation team is running out of ideas to execute / implement, one way to boost ideas is to take a look at what your competitors are doing.

In our digital age, market research is simply just a click or an app away.

This does three things.

First, it forces us out of our internal bubble. Learning what our competitors are doing, what challenges they are trying to solve for their customers, and how they are going about doing it…provides us with market insight and highlights gaps in our thinking and approach.

Second, by downloading the app and experiencing it as a consumer, it puts us in the user shoes. This allows us better understand our customer and build the very much needed empathy.

Third, the research does not just have to qualitative it can also be quantitative. With a little bit of digging you can uncover some basic data such as traffic / downloads, ratings, comments etc. Or if you want to dig even deeper — feature releases / dates, downloads / traffic over time, feature trends etc. — consider using a paid service.

By the way, this works equally well with product teams too.

If your team is struggling with trying to figure out the best way to solve a customer problem, look at competitor’s product or adjacent industries to see how they are going about it.

At the very least, it may just inform you what not to do.

Photo by Mark Fletcher-Brown

Mustafa Kapadia is passionate about helping large organizations innovate, create new products, and be agile so that they can win in this digital world.