Channel Innovation Checkup

Type of record:
  • Strategy method
  • Micro method
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Ideal innovation phases for this method:
  1. Innovation Phase
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  3. 2
  4. 3
  5. 4
  6. 5
  7. 6
  8. 7
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The Channel Innovation Checkup is a tool and part of the "Ten Types Of Innovation" macro method (also described here). The eighth of the "Ten Types Of Innovation" describes innovations that affect all channels through which a company's offerings reach users and customers.

Although the

Internet trading has rapidly gained in importance in recent years, retail stores still remain important - especially when it comes to a special shopping experience. Skilful innovators in this field often find multiple and matching ways to deliver goods to customers. Their goal is to ensure that customers can have their products when and where they want, while minimizing friction losses and increasing enthusiasm.

Channel innovations are specifically tailored to the product group and the industrial context. "Flagship stores can be a very value-adding innovation. Recognizable stores present a brand and offers permanently in a city, while "pop-up stores" can be more useful with a short, flashy appearance in a resort. Internet trading offers completely different advantages: on the merchant side, it reduces costs and increases profit margins. Multi-level marketing is also a channel innovation: the cost of advertising is distributed over the shoulders of many small, medium and large sales people who convey the benefits of a product directly to the end customer.

Successful channel innovations in practice:
- NESPRESSO: The capsule system from Nespresso is a "Product Performance" and "Product System" innovation. With the purchase of the machine, customers are tied to the subsequent purchase of Nespresso capsules. However, the system has been spreading since 1996 thanks to all-encompassing channel innovations. These included its own stores and coffee shops, kiosks in partner stores such as Macy's and Boomingdale's, the online Nespresso shop (which uses email to remind customers to reorder capsules), and several business-to-business channels. This included partnerships with hotels such as Ritz-Carlton and Hyatt as well as airlines from Lufthansa to Quantas Airlines. As if that wasn't enough, there is even a Nespresso Someliers Club, which teaches which coffee goes well with which food and wine.
- Amazon: The closed e-book system "Kindle" enables very fast buying and reading of digitized books.
- Xiameter: Chemical giant Dow Corning opened a web-based platform in 2002 for the direct sale of silicone beads needed to produce plastics. The intermediate trade was completely eliminated and the prices for companies that did not require technical support were drastically reduced. If you know exactly what fabrics and colours you need, you can put together your own order from thousands of options. This channel innovation functions parallel to the traditional sales model of the parent company.
  • Effective for incremental innovations and improvements
  • Effective for marketing innovations
  • Effective for medium complex challenges
  • Effective for new business models
  • Effective for radical innovations
  • Effective for service innovations
  • P2 Analysis (problems - challenges - environment - people - products)
  • P3 Observe (people - environment - product use)
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