How AI is helping identify & nail new product opportunities


“AI is biased differently than humans and can find less expected or contrarian patterns. It should be combined with human insights.”

Michelle Greenwald for Forbes asked for our point of view about how artificial intelligence is helping companies identify new product opportunities and iterate quickly.

As reported in Forbes

Using AI In Design Research and New Product Opportunity Definition

Smart Design, the strategic design agency, uses AI to complement its human-centered approach. AI adds another lens to a research tool kit, allowing teams to uncover different insights and spot behavior or opportunity patterns that might not be visible using traditional quant or qual methods. AI is biased differently than humans and can find less expected or contrarian patterns. It should be combined with human insights.

It helps if there are large data sets available, that are rich or complex (like voice or image based), or very dynamic, changing quickly and often. Available tools include:

  • Open Data provided by institutions, governments or cities
  • Subscription services, such as Statista
  • Client owned consumer data including purchase, use, and social behavior
  • Rich, complex data from primary research (activity logs, transcripts, videos, and images)

As a great example, Smart Design conducted an open source data analysis of accidents in bike lanes from NYC, Boston, and SF, to examine how bike lane design effects the rate of accidents, which turned out to be surprisingly substantial and instructive for future designs.

Powered by Smart Design

Explore the data yourself with our live Web App that compares data between NYC, Boston, and San Francisco.

AI can also perform text-based analysis of transcribed interviews of a large number of respondents using analytics software like Voxpopme or Luminoso. The AI finds patterns between phrases and concepts in the responses, revealing patterns that might not be seen by humans reviewing the individual interviews.

Take-aways for CMO’s

For many companies, AI is a whole new, unknown world. Because its undoubtedly where new product development is heading, it’s worth starting to experiment with. For firms that figure out how to use it well, AI will be a competitive advantage in finding opportunities, iterating faster and more accurately, and saving money in the process. It’s here to stay and will continue to get better and easier to work with.

Read the full article on Forbes

Explore the bike lane app and read about our project

Sep 2020