Making connections: generating customer insight to spark creative ideas

Making connections plays a critical role in creating value. Not only in the broadest sense - identifying and connecting a customer need with a solution that a business can offer - but across many other aspects of what marketers need to excel at to drive growth.

I recently came across a good example to illustrate the power of making connections in creating value, from unearthing a customer insight to generating a creative idea, through to using the opportunities a digitally networked world gives businesses as they design, develop and deliver their offer.

Project Noah is a start-up that has developed a solution to the problem of children spending too much time inside, in front of screens and not enough time outside, exploring and learning about nature. As Yasser Ansari, co-founder of Project Noah explains in the video above, they've identified a clear need and connected it with a solution they can offer.

Their solution is based on an insight that for children to reconnect with nature, they need to use a platform that they are comfortable with: smartphones. Through understanding needs, motivations and behaviours and connecting this with technology, they've realised that spending time exploring nature and spending time glued to their phones don't need to be mutually exclusive. After all, generating insights is all about collecting new observations and connecting them to uncover deep understanding to unlock opportunities for business.

What's the idea behind Project Noah?

Put simply, "smart phones are the butterfly nets of the 21st century". Project Noah offers a free app for iPhone and Android devices. The app lets people take pictures of plants or animals, mark their locations and submit them to the project's website, and if users don't know what plant or animal they've photographed, they can ask the Project Noah community to help them. Users can also see a map of other wildlife spotted near them or around the world. Creativity in marketing is about putting things together to deliver new value. In other words, arranging existing things or creating new things to deliver something new that can add value to customers.

Having developed a great idea, the Project Noah team have made one more critical connection – from idea into action, taking their idea and executing it with excellence. Project Noah is not only a tool to explore and document wildlife, but using the connections that digital enables, it is a platform "to harness the power of citizen scientists everywhere".

Creativity in Marketing is a key ingredient in moving any organisation's marketing capabilities from 'good' to 'great'. In this case, the Project Noah team have thought in new ways to deliver new customer value by creating a 21st century tool that reconnects children with nature.

Project Noah is only one example. If you have come across any others, join the conversation and let us know.

For more information about how Brand Learning can help you lift your organisation’s insight capabilities, please get in touch or contact me directly on LinkedIn. You may also like these films, perspectives and resources on Insight.

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