- por um lado, cada vez mais tribos e mais aguerridas;
- por outro, a crença na quota de mercado como o indicador mais importante.
"In an industry analysis, we found that the consumer packaged goods sector’s biggest R&D spenders saw no appreciable impact on revenue. That’s troubling for companies whose growth has plateaued over the past five years, as new competitors have challenged established brands.
At the company level, however, the picture is more nuanced: Even though (true to the industry average) companies that spent heavily on R&D — such as P&G and Unilever — saw no measurable impact on sales, some outfits that spent less on R&D showed a significant positive correlation.
It turns out, as economist E.F. Schumacher wrote, small really can be beautiful. Of course, incremental innovation — reaping healthy returns with small, iterative improvements — isn’t a new idea.
But conventional management wisdom, based on years of research, still holds that R&D productivity depends on industrial might: Big companies can spend more on innovation, and as a result, they innovate more — and better. In the consumer products world, at least, our analysis suggests that’s not the case.
Despite P&G’s huge R&D investment — more than $38 billion from 1998 to 2017, compared with Reckitt Benckiser’s $2 billion over the same period — P&G’s outlay has reaped fewer rewards on a key measure: While P&G spent more than 3% of its annual revenue on R&D compared with 1.5% for Reckitt Benckiser, P&G’s sales grew at a compound annual rate of 3.4% while Reckitt Benckiser’s sales grew almost three times faster, at 9% per year.
How do we explain our findings? One factor may be that P&G and Reckitt Benckiser seem to embody different philosophies of innovation.
We see the approach favored by big consumer goods companies like P&G and Unilever as analogous to Isaac Newton’s third law: They behave as if for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. In other words, they expect big returns from big investments, so they chase blockbusters.
Contrast that with what we call a Lorenzian approach to R&D investment, which has parallels to the work of MIT mathematician Edward Lorenz, the father of chaos theory. When examining weather patterns, Lorenz discovered that small actions could have large consequences. A butterfly flapping its wings could lead to the formation of a tornado. Like a weather system that amplifies the impact of a fluttering insect, a complex system of companies, customers, competitors, suppliers, and influencers can amplify or diminish the impact of an innovation. In such a world, big ideas can die, and small ones can thrive, as they do at Reckitt Benckiser.
The company doesn’t have a big R&D budget nor a staff of laureled scientists. So it opts to spend small but focus on marginal improvements to its best-selling brands. Reckitt Benckiser starts with deep consumer research to determine how its best brands can be improved and how much more consumers would be willing to pay. From a technical point of view, its innovations are incremental. [Moi ici: Desta forma a inovação na P&G aponta para produtos que possam ser vendidos a todos, a preços competitivos, já a inovação na Reckitt Benckiser é capaz de ser mais dirigida para o que permite fazer subir os preços, ou pelo menos estar menos vulnerável à competição pelo preço]
...Aquele "deep understanding" combina bem com uma outra leitura recente, “This Is Marketing” de Seth Godin:
Reckitt Benckiser’s R&D projects are less risky and far less costly than those of its bigger competitors. But the company sets an ambitious performance target for each one. It expects a certain percentage of its sales each year to come from new products or better versions of existing ones, and its market-facing executives are rewarded financially when the company hits or exceeds those targets. This pay-for-performance incentive, in turn, motivates the company’s personnel to rally behind R&D-improved products and drive them into the marketplace.
Make more small bets and fewer big ones. If Newtonians are going to continue to spend heavily on R&D (and in many cases, they should), they need to invest better. This means cutting back on big bets offering very questionable potential returns. Instead, they should focus on smaller bets that are based on a deep understanding of (1) consumers’ desires, (2) the significant value a small innovation can add, and (3) the system of retailers and competitors in which the innovation will be introduced."
“We’ve gone from all of us being everyone to all of us being no one.
But that’s okay, because the long tail of culture and the media and change doesn’t need everyone any longer. It’s happy with enough.
In “People like us do things like this,” the “us” matters. The more specific, the more connected, the tighter the “us,” the better. [Moi ici: Mas os gigantes precisam de escala, não podem tratar individualmente, por isso a metáfora do plancton]
What the marketer, the leader, and the organizer must do as their first job is simple: define “us.”