Module 03: User Driven Innovation


At the end of this module you will be able to:

  • Have an understanding of the importance of customers involvement
  • Understand what is a User Driven Innovation
  • Understand why collaborating with the end user can be beneficial
  • Relate some practical examples of SME User Driven Innovation
  • End user collaboration – how to involve end customers?

    SMEs can benefit from the collaboration not only with other business actors or research institution, but also with the end user, for whom they are providing the solution. By working together with their clients they can achieve:

  • substantial improvements in the quality of their products or services,
  • get new ideas on the exact needs of the customers and receive more relevant feedback.
  • By paying attention to the first signals sent by the end-users, they are able to react and adapt before their competitors do the same.

    There is a variety of tools which can help to understand what clients really need. The useful classification of them is to look at the specific goals of the collaboration with clients. In order to develop better solutions:

  • lead user analysis,
  • do-it-yourself design customization
  • or co-design teams can be developed.
  • To generate new ideas customer brainstorming sessions and innovation networks involving customers can prove useful. To understand customers needs:

  • virtual testing,
  • adaptive conjoint analysis,
  • storytelling
  • and ethnography work well.
  • Tools such as consumer-generated media and customer communities can serve all these goals. Nowadays collaboration with clients is becoming much easier thanks to online communities and forums. Collaboration with clients really pays off in many ways:

  • In terms of client acquisition:
  • because this is one of the best ways to learn why non-customers aren´t buying from you
  • Engaging new target segments early to transition them to future buyers
  • Customer engagement, advocacy & loyalty:
  • Because it shows the loyal customers that their opinion matters
  • And it empowers people through the ability to impact decisions through ownership in the process
  • Better products & services:
  • Better understanding of customers needs, challenges and ideas
  • Gaining new perspectives on the overall experience
  • More efficient innovation & new product development:
  • Testing ideas earlier in the development process to get cheaper and real-time feedback
  • By understanding interest levels, to prioritise new innovation initiatives
  • To see an example of how to use internet based tools to increase customer engagement, view this video:

    Also please read the document:

  • User Driven Innovation
  • Summary of the case study: “User-driven Innovation Results and recommendations”

    The case study treats of the concept of user driven innovation and how nowadays, in the innovation race of the globalised world, the competition does not involve only new technologies but the understanding of customers needs and the ability to utilise this knowledge in improving and developing products based on their experiences. This report looks at the systematic ways and more scientific approaches to identify customer needs.

    In this sense the customer needs are the source and the driver of the innovation process and is referred as user-driven innovation. The report looks at 3 industries reports – electronics, fashion and medical devices- in the Danish companies’ context. This study is based on sectors’ leaders’ interviews and questionnaires on innovation and are based on best practices identify within Danish companies. At the end of the studies some recommendations are made to address the knowledge gap or challenges encountered by these companies based on user-driven innovation.

    Sub Pages


    This is a great program, i would recommend this program to one and all.

    Ian Sayers