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Achieving Product Adoption Through Your Brand Innovation Strategy

Updated: Dec 25, 2023

The ultimate goal of solving a global challenge in the Impact Tech domain is to reach new markets with a solution that is anchored in a real sense of purpose. Improving product adoption through your brand innovation strategy can help you achieve that goal.
Considering ways to tackle the barriers of product adoption and connect with your customers around the world with a purpose-led strategy is inevitable. Finding a unique value proposition for your product or service that addresses user needs and building customer relevancy are fundamental to this process. This is the manifestation of a wider brand vision, which sets the intention for a higher purpose of the brand.
The value proposition holds a promise to create new possibilities and a future change in the user's experience. It suggests a solution to unmet user needs (in the context of a global challenge), and reflects core principles and benefits in a way that is meaningful to them. In fact, the value proposition is the expression of the product’s unique characteristics and the experiences it provides, which are the main sources of the customer value. These key components can help you refine an inclusive brand vision. Using the aspects mentioned above as means of communication that convey customer value can influence the user’s perception of your brand, and create familiarity with a new product or service. This is particularly important in the case of significant technology adoption barriers, such as the knowledge gap and the lack of trust. The integration of product innovation and the strategic brand focus enables you to create customer value through new product experiences, and thus achieve market differentiation with a distinct product offering. This approach can help you form the value proposition and your brand's identity.
Product adoption evolves from awareness of the innovation to consideration and eventually to action (by using the product). Creating a cohesive brand narrative through the characteristics and experiences that construct your value proposition can help you discover the expressions of the customer value in product innovation and through communication with the end-users. This targeted intervention allows you to shape the product adoption process, from increasing brand awareness to usability aspects.

Furthermore, as you encounter new people and environments based on your growth strategy, you should focus on creating human-centered experiences that are designed for the user’s constraints. It can help you meet untapped opportunities with the value proposition. One way is by addressing a shortage of expertise in a certain domain with a mobile solution that is available worldwide. Another one is by developing a portable device that augments human abilities and collaboration between participants in different settings. You can achieve the desired user experience as you find where the value lies by creating a consistent brand experience that influences the way users discover, perceive, and experience your innovation. It can be done through brand awareness, product differentiation, and a positive product experience.

You may want to consider these factors for product adoption:
The levels of customers’ trust and the emotional connection with the user – these aspects are influenced by your core messages, product and brand associations, and experiences that connect people and places with your brand.
The perceived value of a differentiated product offering and its compatibility with the user’s experiences – these factors refer to addressing a problem or a need for the users while helping them evaluate the benefits compared to the risk involved, such as financial risk and the investment of time and effort (which require a behavioral change).
The end-to-end brand and product experiences – this refers to delivering value in new and tangible ways throughout the user’s journey and when they need it the most.
However, creating growth opportunities in potential markets is about more than defining these experiences for your core offering. Driving growth for your venture largely relies on product or service innovation (or the business model innovation in a broader sense), though it may also conclude in a focused change, such as new digital purchase options. It is invaluable to explore new market opportunities and gain insights about the users, as they may differ in their preferences and expectations of your product under changing circumstances. By expanding the product offering, you can address new customer segments considering the meaningful aspects of their experience, and develop new product categories.
Image initially generated by Shutterstock's Al As you devise your strategy, it’s important to identify barriers and ‘enablers’ in the product adoption process. The enablers apply to your field of expertise and the technology that elevates the user’s experience. They are derived from the role of your product and the type of connection it defines with the user. Based on key insights about the user needs and the way they discover and use the product, you can form a creative plan that uses enablers through your communication strategy and the product experience design.

It is possible to demonstrate the use of these ‘enablers’ with the following actionable directions:
Increase product awareness and visibility through messaging, user stories, visual communication, and digital or physical product design.
• Create a knowledge environment through user training and learning programs.
• Allow the user to test the product in its discovery phase, as you create exposure to the product through your marketing efforts.
• Design for shareability to advance the main themes of your solution and co-create with the users through different initiatives.
• Utilize the product’s platform to create real-time collaborations and data exchange that enable the users to gain the knowledge, insights, and efficiency they need.

The aspects mentioned above can help you address various barriers of product adoption, such as the knowledge gap, lack of customers’ trust, product complexity, privacy and safety concerns, and the user’s perception of technology. The emphasis is on AI technology and the risks associated with it, in terms of data security and the user’s fear of losing autonomy.
Eventually, it is important to influence the perceived customer value as you increase brand credibility, mitigate the risk and the uncertainty in using the product, and reduce the complexity for the user. By designing product experiences that encourage learning through product demonstration, testing, and user training, you can help them estimate return on investment (ROI), as well as integrate new practices into their life and work routines. Consider the ways in which you can optimize and redesign the product adoption process for the users, using the ‘enablers’ to enhance the characteristics, experiences, and user interactions that are unique to your product offering. These may include interactions with other users, with the brand (i.e. with the company’s partners or with technology), and also with the user’s environment, in regards to your Impact startup’s goals. An in-depth examination of these interactions reveals additional information. It may include circles of familiarity with other users, personalization and humanizing technology, and the timing of these interactions, which refers to frequency, duration, dependencies, etc. These aspects affect the end-to-end user experience, the perceived role of technology for the user, and the way in which the solution is delivered to the target customers – all these are important components of the value proposition.
With your strategy, you will be able to define a distinct market positioning for a new product or service and create a complete brand experience through communication and product experiences, while advancing your purpose-driven innovation and goals. In fact, the strategic focus will enable you to connect with your customers based on common values, aspirations, and interests, and shape their perception of a differentiated product offering.
Creating your innovation story is part of the effort to form the ‘Identity Image’ of a memorable, distinct, and credible brand, which will eventually result in improved product adoption in prospective markets.

In conclusion
Your brand innovation strategy affects the way users discover, perceive, and experience your innovation. It does so through new brand and product experiences that appeal to their emotional and functional needs, as you leverage the main characteristics and assets of your brand. The strategic brand focus allows you to define not only the product experiences, but also the way you communicate with your customers, bringing clarity to the value proposition and the brand identity.
Finding new ways to connect with your customers through product awareness and the user’s experience can help you establish trust with the users and increase their confidence and sense of autonomy when using the product. This will allow you to influence the value perceived by customers, which is essential for achieving product adoption.

The purpose of your strategy, other than creating meaningful and personalized experiences that increase customer engagement, is to inspire users to spread the word about your innovation. Above all that, the goal of your strategy is to position your product in the marketplace and define its role for the users, within their community, and in the larger context of global development.
In order to advance your solution in new markets, redefine the role of technology and the role of AI in creating value for the users through human-centered experiences and interactions that empower them to achieve their goals. Using technology to realize your vision is often not about disrupting the user’s life or their workflow, but rather about its compatibility with their experiences, offering a new perspective on an existing situation. It is about delivering a solution that removes limitations, presents new opportunities, and creates a behavioral change that leads to a different outcome for the user. With major advancements in technology, there will be a growing need to apply a people-first approach that uses AI to benefit the user’s journey, as they move towards mutual goals and become an integral part of their environment. Although evaluating the overall effect of your strategy on product adoption and the business in general can be difficult, it can be observed through user activity analytics, user feedback, and the result of using your product. In any case, you should not underestimate the importance of creating a positive change in the human experience with opportunities that were not available before.
When you envision your brand in the future, the path to reaching your goals with the help of your strategy may seem clearer despite the obstacles to product adoption. Lean into the power of your brand to inspire others, grow communities, and make the connection between people and technology possible.
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