Tag Archives: nike

The easiest and most engaged way to get new insights

I’m a baller, and I can tell which sneaker is good for playing in and why. One of the worst things about modern basketball sneakers is that they still generate a lot of moisture on your feet that makes for an uncomfortable way to play. You really have to get used to playing with moisture on your feet. This problem hasn’t been fixed until now.

The video above is an overview of the new Nike Hyperfuse, which uses mesh technology (the one used on running shoes) to fix the moisture problem. What I want to draw attention to is that the Innovation Kitchen team from Nike got the insight for using mesh technology to reduce moisture after traveling to parts of China and ‘observing’ that some people where playing hoops in running shoes or sandals.

The Hyperfuse is a big hit with NBA players right now (Most of Team USA wore them during the recent World Championships) because it has everything all the other shoes had before it plus the mesh technology that helps the feet breathe.

Observe. Observe. Observe.

I’ve argued before that there are plenty of ways to get insights, but the easiest and most engaged way to get insights is by observing how people use your product or interact with your service.

You would think that an athletic footwear maker like Nike would’ve thought about using running shoe mesh technology on basketball shoes before. They had to travel to the other side of the world to see people playing basketball in sandals and running shoes, not basketball shoes, to get this insight. This why direct observation is so important and focus groups so limited, it’s better to observe people’s behavior because if you ask them outright what they want the don’t really know.

Another thing to remember is that people tend to say ‘that’s the way it is’ and accept products as they are and get used to them. Do you actually think that if they’re used to things being the way they are that they’re actually going to tell you what they want? I know as a basketball player you do all sorts of things to remove the moisture such as changing your socks often so your feet are as dry as possible, yet since we’ve found an alternative and temporary way to dealing with it we don’t stop and ask why?

Somebody else, an outsider, has to notice it; define the problem and find a solution.

Direct observation is one of the most cost effective ways to get new insights, ignore it at your peril.

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Make recombination part of your business strategy

jordan 2010

 

“Everything we create is just a product of recombination.”

What’s the inspiration behind the ?

The ability to see through your opponents and keep your intentions hidden. Just like in the world of design, in the world of Air Jordan’s the word . It’s safe to say that every single new Air Jordan has a distinct feature that borrowed from previous models to create the new one, and that is a key to their business strategy:

They’ve mastered the art of recombination.

Not only do they do it with the newer models but also with all the other extensions they’ve build around the Air Jordan’s such as the retro’s, TEAM and individual player models. I think the is to the sneakers industry what Apple is to the tech industry mainly because both companies set out to reinvent whatever they do. Jordan’s reinvent the basketball shoe and Apple reinvents mmm well everything it comes into contact with.

Jordan’s are also about performance and with every new model there’s some innovation in that department but this focus on recombination has made . If you don’t believe me check out the and you’ll see what I mean, a lot of transformational inspiration.

If there’s one thing you can learn from Air Jordan is they from themselves and from other sources and then combine them to come up with something entirely new all while maintaining a focus on style and performance.

Ask yourself: How can I make recombination part of my business strategy? Who can I borrow ideas from that can help me reach x objective?

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The world needs more awesomeness

A few weeks ago Umair Haque said . In an effort to do that he’s :

The goal is to produce a stronger, collaboratively written manifesto on awesomeness, rich with real-world example, discussion, and commentary.

 

Here then are my thoughts:

 

Awesome for me is something that let’s me do or experience something that I’ve never done before. This can also be called innovation, but then again we always had phones until the iPhone came along.

Bottom line ’Awesome is a dramatic improvement over what was before.’

 

Products and services that make my life more awesome are:

  • An iPod let’s me carry thousands of songs in my pocket.
  • An Alienware Computer let’s me play games at the highest performance.
  • A PS3 let’s me play the best console video games at a high performance
  • A Kindle let’s me have books to read at any time I want.
  • A Moleskine notebook let’s me write down notes in a very simple way.
  • makes me smarter and more productive because it let’s me remember more things anywhere I am.
  • let’s keep up with news in a very intuitive and simple way.
  • Mind Manager let’s me create mind maps in a simple and efficient way where I feel confident I can come up with better ideas. 
  • In-n-Out let’s me eat an old fashioned burger the way it should be.
  • let’s me buy pretty much anything I want through the internet and get it 3 days later in a perfect state.
  • let’s me browse the internet wickedly fast (but I still prefer ).
  • let’s me share anything to anywhere in the web directly from my browser.
  • Jordan basketball shoes let me play basketball without having to worry about performance and safety.
  • Nike sports wear gives me the psychological edge in sports.
  • Logitech let’s me have beautiful, efficiently modern tech devices to use with my computer.
  • A Heineken makes me feel like I belong to special group of beer drinkers.
  • A Zebra F-701 pen is a good looking pen with great feel and it’s cheap.

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In conclusion:

 

Awesome enables me.

Awesome empowers me.

Awesome activates me.

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What are your thoughts on awesome? What products or services do you consider awesome?