Image Source Ikea

Crowdsourcing is not new. The beauty industry has been at the forefront of nurturing innovation by tapping into consumer opinion for product development. A prime example that comes to mind is Glossier who used the brand’s blog to ask consumers what their ideal cleanser would look like. As a consequence, the Milky Jelly cleanser was born and contained qualities that consumers requested.

Start up culture and technology has inspired businesses to work more collaboratively. As Cannes Festival of Creativity, collaboration was explored and celebrated. Samsung’s Cannes 2017 presence featured “Atelier Samsung”. The initiative was a collaborative space that presented sessions and seminars that were interactive, highlighting that the power of creativity is rooted in mobile ecosystems.

As such, the future of innovation belongs to brands and retailers that foster collaboration. Consequently, we are exploring the rise of retailers acting as incubators.

Image Source Ikea

In September 2017, Ikea is launching a start- up accelerator, an initiative led by Ikea new Business & innovation and Ikea range & supply and headquartered at the company’s development and distribution centre in Älmhult, Sweden.

Dubbed as Ikea Bootcamp, the retailer is working with global entrepreneurs rainmaking innovation. Participants will have access to Ikea’s prototype shop and test labs, and each start-up will be paired with a senior Ikea team member for guidance and mentorship.

New business and innovation manager at Ikea of Sweden, Tony Sandelius explains that ‘Ikea wants to find solutions to the everyday challenges in life and make new ideas available for more. Innovation needs to happen everywhere in Ikea, and it must be in collaboration with the outside.’

Image Source Sephora

Known for being at the forefront of innovation, Sephora has partnered with volition to launch an initiative that enables consumers to pitch their own beauty product ideas, thus revolutionising product development.

The ideas are driven by what the consumer has not been able to find through searching. The consumer shops for the best ideas by voting for their favourites. Sephora gains insight from the most shopped items. The consumer-driven concept means that the retailer can create products that their customers actually want to a higher degree of accuracy.

The future of retail lies in brands being able to foster collaboration and generate crowdsourced opportunities. Sheridan&Co is a retail design agency that specialises in brand and consumer engagement strategies and innovative store experiences. To find out how we can help your brand become an incubator for new ideas, get in touch here.