A lot of product- and service Innovations do not drop out of clear blue sky but are developed by combining two or more existing elements that were never combined together before. The so-called Consumer Trend Canvas (see: Trendwatching.com) is a tool that stimulates creative thinking within a group of people and aims at developing new product, services, concepts and/or ideas in a process of co-creation.
The starting point of the Trend Canvas is the right upper corner with the selection of 1 specific consumer Trend that you think could be relevant for the future of your client or your business. For instance the aging population, the sharing economy, robotization or digitalization. First you need to get a firm grasp of what this trend stands for. Than you start to answer the 4 questions that relate to the left part of the Canvas and have to do with the Analysis:
(1) Basic Needs: which deep consumer needs does the trend address?
(2) Drivers of Change: why is this trend emerging now, what is changing?
(3) Emerging Consumer Expectations: what new consumer needs, wants and expectations are created by the changes identified above? Where and how does this trend satisfy them?
(4) Inspiration: how are other businesses applying this trend?
After defining and discussing all possible relevant answers to the above mentioned questions you proceed with the right part of the canvas that has to do with the application. Here you have to come up with answers for 2 remaining questions:
(5) Innovation potential: how and where could you apply this trend to your business?
(6) Who: which (new) customer groups could you apply this trend to? What would you have to change?
After filling in all 6 parts of the Consumer Trend Canvas you will finally be able to delineate and harvest what is called ‘Your Innovation(s)’ in the circle on the right side. You will be amazed of how smoothly innovative and inspiring ideas pop-up after taking time to seriously think through, step-by-step, all the aspects mentioned in the framework!