SPORTS & OUTDOORS

durability and performance reign supreme in a category where consumers use products in rugged, high-impact environments and applications. 

club car

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Sporting Goods Product Innovation Trends

How will you get ahead of product trends in an ever-evolving market?

Like other consumer industries, sports and outdoor product categories are impacted by far-reaching market trends likely to influence the direction of your innovation pipeline. Back in 1992, for example, Magellan founder Ed Tuck used brand new GPS technology to launch the first handheld navigation device for consumers, used at first mostly by mariners and avid boaters. Similar technology is now easily available to every smartphone owner in the world, but that wasn’t always the case. A more recent example is the addition of Video-Assisted Referee (VAR) technology used in the 2018 FIFA World Cup. It’s only a matter of time before similar technology is rolled out across the elite sports world.  

More than technological advancements, leaders in sports and outdoor industries should consider other big trends shaking up the market: sustainability in sports equipment manufacturing; the rising concern over the long lasting effects of head injuries in contact sports; the recent legalization of sports gambling in the US, shifting retail channels from brick-and-mortar to online,  just to name a few. How will these trends, and others yet to be realized, impact your organization?

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The NS Approach

Our Approach to Innovation in the Sports & Outdoors Category

In sporting goods and recreational product industries, like other consumer categories, businesses (especially large ones) tend to fall into old habits when it comes to innovation. A company’s internal team may be exceptionally skilled in developing and commercializing products that fit within existing categories, because the challenges are familiar. These same talented teams, however, could struggle to apply those skills to new categories. This isn’t uncommon in the business world. Companies tend to design around their existing limitations instead of pushing beyond the boundaries of what their internal team can do, which is why it’s critical to infuse your team with fresh ideas and outside perspectives if innovation is truly your end goal.

Nottingham Spirk is perfectly positioned to augment your existing team to push through this inertia. We assemble versatile, multidisciplinary project teams that bring varied experiences and perspectives to each new venture. We build these Vertical Innovation teams according to the demands of the project, and work collaboratively with our partners at every stage from ideation through product launch. Designers and engineers sit in on focus groups, market researchers weigh in on prototypes, and any of them might visit the manufacturing factory floor.

tectraum video

pro2cool: brain injury treatment innovation

For true disruption, be “Gritty” in your approach

You don’t have to be a hockey fan to have heard of Gritty. Released into the wild in September 2018, the furry, orange, manic new mascot for the Philadelphia Flyers was a literal overnight online sensation. He’s appeared on Good Morning America and The Tonight Show and been mentioned a few times on Saturday Night Live’s “Weekend Update” and HBO’s Last Week Tonight with John Oliver. ESPN even found that all the attention seems to annoy at least some of the NHL’s other mascots.

case studies

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VERTICAL INNOVATION

LEARN MORE ABOUT HOW VERTICAL INNOVATION CAN ACCELERATE YOUR PRODUCT TO MARKET

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VERTICAL INNOVATION

LEARN MORE ABOUT HOW VERTICAL INNOVATION CAN ACCELERATE YOUR PRODUCT TO MARKET

hydros-Portfolio-New

VERTICAL INNOVATION

LEARN MORE ABOUT HOW VERTICAL INNOVATION CAN ACCELERATE YOUR PRODUCT TO MARKET

cubcadet-portfolio-v2-1

VERTICAL INNOVATION

LEARN MORE ABOUT HOW VERTICAL INNOVATION CAN ACCELERATE YOUR PRODUCT TO MARKET

cubcadet-portfolio-v2-1

VERTICAL INNOVATION

LEARN MORE ABOUT HOW VERTICAL INNOVATION CAN ACCELERATE YOUR PRODUCT TO MARKET

cubcadet-portfolio-v2-1

VERTICAL INNOVATION

LEARN MORE ABOUT HOW VERTICAL INNOVATION CAN ACCELERATE YOUR PRODUCT TO MARKET

CONTACT US

Reach out to find out how Nottingham Spirk could design and bring to market your next innovation.