Being unimpressive is by far less stressful

For nearly ten years I’ve worked in and around graphics and creative, the one thing that I’ve noticed pops up at nearly every place I’ve been is the absolute need for innovation and creativity.

Every brand or product wants to be innovative and creative well this is the general direction most want. But really does everything need to be innovative or creative, is this notion practical?

From experience some things just don’t need to be rather they just need to do what they’re supposed to do and do it well. A well designed product of any kind that gives the end user or customer a great experience will always fare better than an over designed or innovative one.

The best examples of this being the whole MP3 player war ten years ago, ultimately the iPod won this competition but it’s not what I’d call innovative rather very well designed with a well supported ecosystem. There were MP3 players that sounded better than the iPod, the Bang & Oulfsen or Diamond ones come to mind there was better playback software like Winamp but neither could gain market traction without the right environment.

Apple created the right hardware and software ecosystem, it didn’t really innovate rather it cultivated the right condition to grow an in demand product to an absolute run away success. Smart people can solve problems, but I tend to agree with Hegarty’s idea it takes true genius to pervert them. Jobs and Ive took good ideas and turned them into something special they understood what people wanted and how to cultivate the idea.

For Apple the Newton and Bandai were innovative products born far to soon for their genius to be realised, again innovative and creative but flopped massively because the key quantitative background wasn’t really utilised. To put it simply they were not only over designed but too clever for their time, but they did learn by pulling it before it was too expensive and redirecting their focus.

Specifically for me it come down to the ideation process, a good idea that is well defined and well researched is far better than an innovative or creative one. Not saying go with the dull and boring but explore the initial issue then define a strategy you can actually do, each time there will be a gem of a concept there.

I do think many people out there have to feel things need to be ultra innovative or creative to be a winner I’m from a different camp, know the product, understand the demographic and produce quality the success will follow (being awards and monetisation).
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