The success rate in product innovation is dismal: roughly 80% of all new products fail or dramatically underperform expectations. Even the world's best product innovators fail over half the time. High failure rates are inevitable for companies that think they are competing against the products of other companies. New products are competing against the established habits of potential customers. Success only become predictable when new products are positioned to create new habits or take over old ones.
How Do I Create Habit-Forming Products?
Consumers have one brain, but two minds, and habit-forming products must appeal to both. Sublime Behavior Marketing works with you through each step in the product innovation process, from development and design to commercialization and launch, to help orient your new products around consumer habit formation.
The challenge for any new product is more than simply getting noticed in a crowded marketplace; the challenge is that a new product must create a new habitual behavior to become successful. In the development phase, Sublime engages your team in a series of workshops and deploys a number of research methodologies to answer questions about your product and the behavioral elements necessary to form habits in potential customers. Sublime's habit-based approach to new product innovation offers essential insights into the likelihood of success and the level of effort to achieve that success.
How Does This Differ From My Current Process?
Our approach to creating habit-forming products transforms product innovation from an inward-facing, product attribute driven process to a natural cycle centered on consumer behavior. The Habit Adoption Cycle for new products focuses on three distinct behavioral events:
Disrupt Current Product Behavior
Most new products are improvements or alternatives to old products that consumers already use. Replacing these products with your new offering requires you to disrupt consumers' current habitual product behaviors along a line that is meaningful to the user. Only when consumers are conscious of what they purchase and use will it be possible to initiate trial of a new product.
Initiate New Product Behavior
Disruption from a habitual routine is fleeting, so your product must be applicable and available to the consumer when the disruption occurs. The product, brand, logo, packaging, distribution, and pricing should come together to motivate trial usage.
Reinforce and Repeat New Product Behavior
Trial is only the first step in the process of habit formation. The product must reinforce consumers sufficiently to drive future trials. Marketing should also be built around driving repeat purchase and usage enough times to supplant old habits.
Do You Have Any Examples of Habit-Forming Design?
It was 2007, the iPhone had just been released, and Sprint needed to respond. Sprint worked with Sublime to design and develop a phone that would be habit-forming. The result was the Instinct, Sprint's best-selling handset in its history.
Read the case study here.