30 Firms that understand Design and Genius!!!
The current issue of Fast Company features Design and 30 companies that get it….• Apple – Proving that style, specs, and sophistication can work as one.
• Burton – Capturing the snowboard lifestyle–with cutting-edge tech.
• Viking – Cooking like a pro, with unquestioned good taste.
• Oxo – Ergonomic, affordable kitchen tools with curves like museum pieces
• jetBlue – An integrated experience from kiosk to blue snacks.
• Nike – The Swoosh is worldwide, bringing art and fashion to sport.
• Kohler – Fixtures that make the loo worth a visit.
• Target – Where designers go to shop–and sell.
• Starbucks – Making Italian-inspired coffee culture safe for America–and the world
• The Container Store – A banal name married to unexpectedly attractive products and its shopping experience.
• McDonald’s – A global restaurant redo, part of a systems-design upgrade.
• Black and Becker – Classic American tools that marry form and function.
• Wal-Mart – The world leader in business-process design, now greening the global supply chain.
• Crown – proving forklifts can be as well designed as iPods.
• Whirlpool – Can appliances be sexy? Its newest products say yes
• Johnson and Johnson – Functional, sustainable design in your medicine chest.
• Interface – Carpet maker designing for net-zero enviro impact by 2020
• GE – Turning to design for health care (MRI machines), tech (Smart Grid), and customer relations
• 3M – No-nonsense materials giant creates products that delight .
• Gilt Groupe – Fashion flash-sales site makes online shopping as chic as its wares.
• Flipboard – Artful creator of real-time virtual magazines.
• Jawbone – Hands-free headsets like modern jewelry, Jambox speakers that rock.
• Method – Eco-friendly cleaning products you’re happy to leave on the counter.
• Fixbit – Making health-data monitoring easy, fun–and cool
• Tesla – Sleek electric sports cars that you can feel good lusting aft
• fuego – The outdoor-grill company is burning up sales at Target.
• Incase – The most stylish maker of Apple accessories.
• Twitter – easy-to-use interface works for corporations and regime topplers.
• Live Scribe – Smart pen system captures writing, listening, and images in a magic notebook.
• Herman Miller – Furniture that inspires – and solves problems.
All of these firms understand how to grow the top line; top line growth is not incremental, accidental or in an existing space. Real growth comes from a significant change in demand. It comes from understanding when there’s a significant change in the nature of demand, caused either by a shift in customers’ circumstances or in their thinking.
That’s what happened to spending patterns when the housing bubble burst and the economy collapsed, but it also occurred when tablets and smart phones became simple and affordable tools for use at home and at work. Companies looking for significant top-line growth need to find, and then focus their business on, a “big-enough market insight,” or BEMI.Finding a BEMI is not simply about moving to an uncontested blue ocean market space. Rather, a BEMI comes from the ability to see the connection between fundamental trends and the emergence and development of the hotly contested and lucrative markets those trends will eventually foster. That market insight then serves as the foundation for a blockbuster product in some cases or for a suite of offerings in others. Is the firm Incase and example of BEMI? Incase makes protective covers for Apple products. They saw the connection and emergence. The Lexus brand, Pampers and automatic room fresheners and shower cleaners were all BEMI. Most times these ideas did not explode the revenue line over night.
Are there BEMI in your space? If genius is the ability to see connections among seemingly unrelated things then let’s be geniuses for a while. Let’s step back and look for the connections, the opportunities, the market insights…