Italy lists open innovation as equal to big data, cyber security, IoT, robotics

ministero delle imprese e del made in italy

Italian Ministry of Enterprises and Made in Italy (MIMIT) has included open innovation in Impresa 4.0 project. This means that Italian companies will be financially supported by the Italian government for open innovation projects. Read more here. Email Andrea at to discuss this financing opportunity.

Additionally, this is the first time that open innovation has been considered as a business and tech mainstream. MIMIT has listed it together with big data, cyber security, IoT, robotics, cloud, process digitalization, VR and others. All of these mainstreams are already billion or even trillion EUR global industries, while open innovation is the only emerging solution.

This is another proof that open innovation will only grow and companies that adopt it now will have an advantage. Open innovation, like all other listed solutions, requires time and investment to be integrated and we are ready to help you through that transition most efficiently and profitably.

Start adopting open innovation today – email Andrea at - our new open innovation platform for architecture & real estate

Our mission is to build software which makes open innovation accessible to all, affordable, easy to use, and industry specific. We started with which focuses on B2B product design – it allows B2B companies to cooperate with end-users of their products. However, covers only a part of the global market. To spread open innovation to other markets we must customize our software for each industry and promote as separate platforms.

This is why we launched – an open innovation platform for architecture and real estate.

Architecture and real estate have a substantial impact on our lives but the decisions are highly centralized and risky. Large architecture and construction companies are already using open innovation (aka open architecture, open design) for public spaces, but this is far from enough. We hope that makes it possible for all designers, builders, owners, managers of all real estate projects to be open to innovation feedback from all end-users, stakeholders, experts.

There is a common belief that architecture, construction, and real estate are very conservative industries resistant to change and innovation. We hope that can prove this prejudice wrong.

Our next step is to complete an case study.

For more about email Nikola at

Product is not enough - customers want an ecosystem

product ecosystem

One of the biggest mistakes companies make is to invest in product innovation, and not in ecosystem innovation.

If companies only innovate products then they will not be competitive. Even the best products require an ecosystem of equally innovative marketing, sales, training, and other services. No matter how innovative the product is, it will be easily hidden behind an ecosystem of outdated services. Simply, the contemporary markets require complete ecosystems on every level, even if a company focuses only on products and uses third party distributors.

Open innovation is one of the most effective and advanced innovations in this ecosystem. And it is starting slowly to be a standard – customers require it because it is the most efficient channel for them to get more value from the company.

Here is how makes open innovation an easy choice:

Low cost
We have drastically reduced price of open innovation platform. In some cases we are 10 – 20 times cheaper.

Easy to use
Adding products and opportunities, making groups, inviting customers is all very easy. It usually require no or minimal training.

Easy processes
All additional processes like campaigns, workshops, finding innovators are all easy to adopt and do not require many resources.

Growing benefits
Once a channel with a B2B partner or customers is created it just keeps growing, while processes become more efficient. Value keeps multiplying.

To improve your ecosystem with email Andrea at

Open innovation mix: agile, data, platform, campaigns

agile data platform campaigns

For optimal open innovation prepare following:

Practice an agile product innovation process
Open innovation depends on the support of the product designers and if their process is closed, they will not be able to support it. Agile product design process works perfectly with open innovation.

Share well prepared open data and information
Depending on the goal, innovation depends greatly on the information you give innovators. Photos, videos, descriptions, case studies, and especially open data will inform and guide innovation suggestions. The more the better.

Use the latest open innovation platform
Improvising platforms with forms, marketing research solutions, spreadsheets, and whatnot, or using outdated insufficient platforms will not work. Obviously, we recommend

Promote with dedicated campaigns
A well set up profile on an open innovation platform is important but not enough. You must campaign, reach out to potential innovators, talk to them, engage them. In our experience, workshops work well with, but all types of promotions should be tested – each brand and project is different.

To start using email Andrea at

3 ways you can add innovations

add innovation

There are 3 ways you can add innovations on


To an opportunity
Opportunities help you focus on specific questions, guidelines which focus on your creativity. Brands publish them to make it easier for you to understand their problems and engage.

To a product
Opportunities are not the only way to engage. You can go to the product page and add your innovation to products, without an opportunity. Whatever idea you have about a product you can add it directly to a product.

To a brand
If opportunities or products are too specific for you, and you need more space for your big innovation, go to the brand list, add your innovation to a brand and they will get it. This innovation does not have to be about products, and can be about anything.


This way you can add an innovation on anything to any brand, and they will see it, and you can be rewarded. No limits. Start innovating. is a necessary customer channel

customer relationship

Relationships with customers are far more complex than the buy-sell exchange. They always were. Ever since humans did business they wanted to communicate more, learn about each other, cooperate.

What changed is not the need for a relationship, but that we are globalized and digitalized today. While we sell more globally and we use more digital tools, we tend to forget the parts of our relationships which were there all along.

Open innovation was always part of a business relationship. Listening to customers, understanding them, and trying to build what they need is the essence of any business. But open innovation is in danger of being reduced. It was informal and personal and as such it is forgotten in a more globalized and digital business environment.

This is why is important. It will formalize and digitalize open innovation, enriching the new relationships provided by the global growth. Without adopting the relationships that existed before will be reduced and customers will be deprived.

To use to improve your customer relationships, email Andrea at is part of New European Bauhaus

New European Bauhaus

We are proud to be accepted into the New European Bauhaus.

Our values of participation, openness, design, innovation, inclusivity, and sustainability are aligned with the New European Bauhaus, and we hope to learn and grow together. Our goal is to make open innovation easy to use, affordable, and industry specific – and as such it is a crucial part of the European Green Deal and New European Bauhaus.

New European Bauhaus is an EU project focused on sustainability, design, innovation, and participation, and engages a wide range of members, including Arup, Tarkett, Liguria, and many others.

Learn more about New European Bauhaus.

Innovators want to help

open innovation

We noticed that one of the blocks to open innovation is the fear of negative criticism. Managers chose not to start open innovation projects because they do not want to hear criticism, get negative comments, and complaints. Here are 3 tips which show you that this fear is not necessary:


Innovators know that open innovation is for innovation only
Innovation is a creative activity, and as such it requires a positive attitude. So far in our experience this was natural to innovators. There are not many channels which offer them participation and they appreciate that. is designed for adding innovations only
In an extreme case that someone wants to share something other than innovation, design makes it clear that they should use other channels.

Open innovation campaigns always set a positive tone
All the promotion, workshops, meetings related to open innovation should always promote the essence of open innovation – positivity, creativity, participation, cooperation, sharing. Once this atmosphere is set, little motivation remains for negativity.


In our experience, innovators know that open innovation is a positive cooperative experience, and that there are other channels for criticism (forums, customer support, etc), and therefore we see no risk. Do not let this fear block your company from using open innovation. Innovating together is a very satisfying activity for everyone. We love it.

To start an open innovation project for your company email Andrea at is paid, easy, accessible

open innovation

Open innovation can not work if it is hard for innovators. Our goal is to eliminate all obstructions of creativity and openness. Here are the top design decisions we made to make easy and effortless for innovators:


Every innovator can get paid
We do not believe in giving a large reward only to a single winner. Our system is based on rewarding as many innovators as possible. Brands can give rewards ranging from small tips (25 EUR) up to large professional payments (10,000 EUR).

Easy to use
So far hundreds of innovators used for the first time and none of them requested help with using it. is simple to use and without any distractions.

Always accessible
Website, mobile website, and an Android app make accessible to everyone everywhere always. There are no deadlines, location limitations, complicated logins. We are planning an iOS app soon, but Apple users can easily use our mobile website.


Open innovation is not open if it depends on innovator’s to invest, if it is hard to use, and has limitations on when where and how it can be used.

To start using for your brand email Andrea at

Market research, focus groups, social media comments, open innovation...

customer voice

What is the difference between market research, focus groups, social media comments, and open innovation?

They all share the same goal – inform the company about what customers want. But they all use different methods, have different costs, and give different results. Most importantly, they are not in competition with each other, but they work together to complete the picture of what customers want.


Market research
Market research uses polls and interviews, and other similar methods which elicit very specific structured feedback from customers. Questions are designed by the company to be easily quantified in hope that more customers offer more input which is easy to process. Market research can be expensive and biased, but needs little change in the company.

Focus groups
Selected customers are asked for a more elaborate opinion. These are very controlled situations which can provide good insight but again in a very controlled way. Focus groups can be very expensive and biased, and they also need almost no change in the company.

Social media comments
They are free and abundant, but are very unstructured, hard to understand, and very biased. Most extreme comments can be in a minority but can still pull the company in a wrong direction. Social media comments do not need any change in the company.

Open innovation
Low cost and with minimum bias because of its focus on practical improvements, but it needs some changes in the company – which is actually good. All other three are external reactions which have very controlled effect on the company while open innovation builds a more transparent relationship with customers.


It is best to use all four together because they are not exclusive, but if you must chose one we suggest open innovation because of the low cost (thanks to and its direct and immediate positive impact on products.

To adopt open innovation email Andrea at

Top opportunities April - May 2023


Geoplast is looking for project information where their product is used in an innovative, different, interesting way. This opportunity is shared among architects and engineers who use their products. Maximum reward is 250 €.

See all Geoplast opportunities.



Elmar is looking for interesting indoor garden solutions which can be used in their kitchens. This is an opportunity for product designers, but also anyone who has a good idea. Maximum reward is 250 €.

See all Elmar opportunities.


Linea Flesh

Linea Flesh, an Italian manufacturer of hygiene products, has published several opportunities asking for new dimensions of their products. Dimensions play a big role in their product efficiency and they are interesting to hear for new and unexpected suggestions. These opportunities target final users of their products who work in production facilities. Maximum reward is 100 €.

See all Linea Flesh opportunities.


Each opportunity shows to customers and end-users that the brand is open to learning from their experience and values the relationship they have. Email Andrea at to start using for your brand.

Il Sole 24 Ore features Fiam and

il sole 24 ore open innovation

We are proud that our work with Fiam is featured in the most trusted Italian business news – Il Sole 24 Ore.

Read the article here

Thank you Fiam, Il Sole, and Barbara Ganz.

Fiam was our first case study. Our join work is one of the best examples how can benefit innovation, marketing, and sales.

See Fiam opportunities

To start using for your brand email Andrea at

A new faster reward system

open innovation rewards

Today we introduced pulldown reward options which will simplify and accelerate rewards.

So far brands had a number input when publishing and rewarding innovations. Decision which amount to use in this input was causing substantial delays. It required training and support. By replacing the input with a pulldown we will substantially accelerate rewarding and reduce the need for training.

This design decision was made after months of working with brands and innovators, and is based on our deep understanding of open innovation.

Pulldowns are now replacing number inputs and will offer range including a zero reward with a thank you email, smaller tip amounts which can still reward the work for lower relevance suggestions, the regular range of rewards for relevant suggestions, and even high amount rewards for innovation breakthroughs.

Log in to to use the new reward system.

To learn more about using for your brand, email Andrea at

Openness and open innovation training

open innovation training

We are offering openness and open innovation training for leaders, product designers, teams, and companies. Our training is structured in three parts:

Openness – culture change
Openness as a cultural concept should be accepted before open innovation processes and tools are adopted. We explain openness as a way to improve quality of information used in decision making – leadership, strategy, design, marketing, sales, HR.

Open innovation – processes change
We do not teach open innovation as a change of innovation processes but adoption of marketing processes in innovation. Our training is focused on discovery of experts and management of the relationship with them. – tool adoption
For a company to fully adopt openness and open innovation it must use a tool. This part of training is for companies that chose to use our platform and it will teach them to practically implement openness and open innovation with customers and experts.

Training can be customized for the group size and available time, exercises and case studies are included, and can be done online or on location.

To purchase openness and open innovation training email Andrea at

Which innovations to reward and how much?


Cash rewards are the most important element of We insist on cash rewards because they add respect and professionalism to the relationship that no other form of a reward can. For example, giving free products, samples, coupons, discounts is not appropriate in our opinion as a reward for innovation suggestions. And the brands we work with agree.

However, the dilemma is which innovations to reward. There are two main approaches:

Reward all work with a smaller rewards
Reward all innovations which satisfy the minimum requirements because of the work they required, and separately offer a much higher reward for exceptional innovations. For example, set an opportunity reward to 100 EUR and reward all innovations even if they do not cause change in your work. In this case you are rewarding the work of the innovator, not the idea. And, since you have the contact of the innovators, you can individually contact and reward exceptional innovations directly. This is a customer focused approach that builds the community.

Reward only the best innovations with high rewards
Ignore innovations which are not new to you, which do not surprise you or change your work, and reward only the innovations that do with much higher rewards. For example, offer a 2,000 EUR reward for a specific problem. This is an innovation focused approach that builds the product.

We recommend applying a range of rewards, so both minimum work and the top innovations are rewarded according to their value. It is not good to ignore innovations which do not work immediately because you can demotivate innovators. Maybe their later attempts can be more fruitful or their suggestions can make more sense in time.

To learn more how to reward innovations email Andrea at for sales

Companies do not work well if they divide themselves into sections which do not work together. R&D, product design, marketing, sales – customers do not care about these divisions. They only care if a company creates value for them.

In this spirit, we do not see open innovation as a strictly R&D or product design activity. Our main contribution to open innovation is integration with marketing. For open innovation to truly work, we must adopt a marketers mind.

We also see open innovation as a sales tool. The whole point of innovation is to sell. If we can skip directly to sales, then this is best. Here are simple and direct ways to use for sales:

Suggest your products as innovations
Salespeople can register, find an opportunity, and suggest their products as innovations, as long as the innovation is real and relevant to the opportunity.

Invite leads to tell you what they need
Selling is a lot about “I am great, my product is great” – and it can be suffocating. It is refreshing to just let your leads talk about themselves and their needs.

Invite current customers to tell you what they need
Nothing will make your current customer happier than rewarding them for suggestions. is one of the best loyalty programs easily generating repeat and accessory sales.

To learn how to use for sales email Andrea at

And remember, the sales person that listens the best will win. - a simple idea that works is based on a very simple idea:

1) Companies want to ask customers and experts for help,

2) Companies publish questions offering rewards for the best answers,

3) Companies promote their questions to reach more customers and experts,

4) Customers and experts answer the questions,

5) Companies reward the answers.

Behind the business terminology of opportunities, innovations, brands, it is actually a simple idea: ask, get answers, pay the best. A win-win situation which results in happier customers, better informed companies, and improved products and services.

Start using now.

Why open innovation fails?

Why open innovation fails?

Open innovation is one of the most important strategies. Many companies that depend on innovation consider it a core principle of growth. They dedicate more resources to owning the next idea, than anything else. In spite of this, open innovation has not become a standard. Reason for this is that it is applied poorly. Here is why:

Only few opportunities are published
Publishing few opportunities per year does not work. We live in a world where publishing is done daily, not monthly. Anything published today, is old news tomorrow. Only way to remain relevant is to constantly publish, to always be present.

Very specific innovations are requested
When opportunities are based on narrow internal engineering and design needs, then innovator pool is drastically reduced. To reach more innovators more subjects must be covered. Also the company must be open to accept innovations outside opportunities and products. And most importantly, innovators must feel that the brand is open for innovation on all levels.

Too little promotion is done
Promotion of opportunities is greatly underestimated. Each opportunity should be promoted with inbound and outbound methods, including cold outreach. The more opportunities there are, the better the team is in promoting them. Learning how to promote opportunities takes a while.

We designed to avoid these failure points:
– We support constant publishing of opportunities. The more the better, same as in social media and blogging.
– Many opportunities allow covering many topics on opportunity, product, and brand level, making the brand totally open.
– Our platform and tools are designed with promotion in mind, making it easy to grow your audience.

Please email Andrea at to start using for your company.

Webinar - Limits of internal innovation

limits of internal innovation webinar

Join our Zoom webinar Limits of internal innovation this Wednesday 22 Mar at noon sharp (12:00 CET). We will discuss for about 30 mins (more if needed), anyone and all questions are welcome. Language is Italian, but when needed we can switch to English.


Andrea Toniolo, our founder and innovation consultant, will moderate a discussion on internal innovation limitations and benefits of open innovation. We will also explain which aspects of innovation are better done internally and which can benefit greatly from opening up.

This webinar is great for product designers, innovation managers, entrepreneurs, business leaders.

See you soon. For more information email Andrea at

Cold outreach for open innovation

cold outreach open innovation

Campaigning for open innovation projects should include cold outreach.

Cold outreach is any form of reaching out to potential innovators with whom you had no prior communication. This means that you need to explain who you are, your company, and your open innovation project. Cold outreach is important because it connects your company to new experts and should be practiced constantly by sales, engineers, or marketing.

Here are few tips:

Prepare the list
Finding potential innovators to reach requires a specific know-how. Take your time in learning how to find experts and learn as much as you can about them before you contact them.

Focus on the brand level
With we focus innovators on three levels: brand, product, and opportunity. Avoid promoting only a single opportunity because it has a higher risk of not being interesting to the potential innovator. Interest them in your brand in general.

Reduce bias, be experimental
The whole purpose of open innovation is to surprise yourself, to get the unexpected idea. Some level of control is needed, but also too much control can reduce the surprise and innovation quality. Always contact potential innovators which do not seem standard – you never know what you might get.

To learn more about cold outreach for open innovation email Andrea at

How to promote your brand profile?

open innovation promotion

After the brand profile is set up comes an important step of reaching potential innovators. Here are the key steps in promotion:

Publish opportunities targeting specific innovator types
The purpose of opportunities is to act as niche landing pages for specific types of innovators. For example, publish an opportunity targeting only electric engineers or only students. Publish as many opportunities as you can. The more there are, the bigger the chances are that you will find the match between innovators and an opportunity.

Link and mention it everywhere
Make sure your brand profile and product pages are linked and mentioned in all relevant locations. Also include your brand profile in general campaigns and QR codes in physical locations and products. This shows commitment and will bring traffic.

Create dedicated campaigns
You can create promotional campaigns only to promote your brand profile. These campaigns can have press, digital advertising, and more. They can be done, for example, once a year. Consider using a small part of your advertising budget for

Ask potential innovators in person
Just like reaching out to potential customers, you also need to reach out to potential innovators. One-on-one communication is the most effective, especially when it comes to finding expert innovators.

To learn more how to promote your brand profile email Andrea at

Advertising vs open innovation

advertising vs open innovation

Advertising is the main way to communicate with customers. Companies spend enormous amounts of money on advertising and the total global spend is close to a trillion USD. This is approx. 1 % of the global GDP making it one of the biggest global industries.

But advertising is far from perfect. Most of the global advertising is controlled by Google and Meta algorithms making it difficult for companies to differentiate. Also, a century old John Wanamaker‘s statement “Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is, I don’t know which half” still remains relevant. Most importantly, advertising is based on interrupting customers and not on organically growing their interest.

As an alternative, open innovation is affordable, has a better ROI, and is not based on interrupting. We suggest that a small part of the advertising budget is dedicated to open innovation, and – once the results come in – it will be obvious open innovation is a more effective way to to communicate with customers.

To invest in open innovation email Andrea at

1 % rule of open innovation

open innovation rule

1 % of customers who use the product should participate in product innovation.

If a product is used by 10,000 customers then 100 customers should give feedback on the product suggesting how it can be improved. This is a suggested minimum to prevent causing damage and avoid losing contact with customers. If more customers participate, the better it is.

Customer participation is also specific – it should be a suggestion of real improvements, not a complaint or praise which does not contribute to product design.

Obviously, as product is more successful, there are more customers, and the 1 % grows as well. This is why an easy to use accessible online platform like is needed.

Email Andrea at about using to include 1 % of your customers in product innovation.

How to listen better


Listening is an ability to be open, to accept someone else’s opinion, need, authority. Listening also is the best way to manage a company. The more managers listen, the more successful the company will be. Here are three main tips in how to listen:

Listening does NOT oblige you to do anything
If you listen, you are not obliged to do everything that you hear, nor you have to do it exactly as you hear it. Listen between the lines, understand the motivation behind what the customer says, and react in your own creative way. Listening is not a binary. It is a creative process which has no obligatory outcomes. Feedback that you hear today can give you a completely unexpected idea months later. Think of listening as goal in itself – by listening you are already providing value.

You will NOT lose the control of the project
Some managers feel that when they listen, they are losing control, that they are not doing their jobs, that the project will go in the wrong direction. Actually listening to feedback does not oblige you to change your project. Listening actually empowers your control over the project by building trust and giving you more information.

You will NOT lose the control of the relationship
Customer relationships can become narrow and rigid over time. Managers do not like to shake them up with changes. But changes will happen no matter what and it is better to take initiative than to be passive. The best way to manage the relationship changes is by listening. Listening reduces the risk in constantly changing relationships, relaxing the tensions caused by changes.

By being a better listener, you will be a better manager, and your company will perform better.

For more about our listening training email Andrea at for product digitalization

product digitalization

We added digitalization as an innovation type.

Digitalization is one of the main forces of change for brands. Digitalization includes process digitalization (for example, CRM and ERP software) and product digitalization. Product digitalization includes all possible ways a product can be digitalized or included in digital tools. For example, digital twins, BIM objects, data sharing, IoT, AR, VR, etc.

Now allows brands to collect digitalization innovations for their products. It also allows digitalization experts to suggest innovations which might not be on the brand’s radar. Brands should publish product specific or general digitalization opportunities targeting experts, consultants, and other digitalization providers. Companies that attract the best digitalization innovations will be more competitive.

To publish product digitalization opportunities on, email Andrea at presented on TelePadova

Andrea Toniolo presented in an interview on TelePadova.

Main points of the interview are:

Every customer knows something useful,

To use this knowledge companies need to be good at listening,

Companies need a tool to listen.

Watch the interview on YouTube.

To use to listen to your customers, email Andrea at for product recycling


Recycling is extremely undeveloped. About 5 % of plastic is recycled. Many metals have less than 50 % recycling rates. Less than 15 % of clothes and textiles is recycled. Only 20 % of electronic waste is recycled and it is estimated 5 billion phones were thrown away in 2022.

Most products are not designed to be recycled. Most production, supply, and retail are also not designed for recycling. One of the main reasons is the lack of know-how, time, and other resources. Designers and managers do not know how to do it, do not have the time and incentives to learn, or do not have enough time and resources to make changes.

One way to improve product recycling is with It offers an easy way to publish opportunities which reward recycling innovations. Opportunity campaigns can target recycling experts, innovations collected, and recycling know-how can be integrated in product design and lifecycle.

To improve recycling of your products with email Andrea at for product safety

product injuries

Obviously, products should not hurt its users and safety should be the most important requirement of any product. To achieve this innovation and product design teams rely on regulation, data, and on their internal know-how. In practice, this is not enough.

USA Consumer Product Safety Commission reported more than 11 million medical emergency injuries caused by products in 2021. This implies many more injuries which were not a medical emergency. The stats are probably the same in many other countries.

This is an example how millions of people are being injured by products in spite of regulation and internal efforts. Conclusion can only be that innovation and product design processes should prioritize safety even more, especially by using end-user feedback and open innovation.

To use to improve safety of your products email Andrea at

Safety, comfort, durability... - new innovation types

innovation types

We just updated innovation types which specialize more towards product innovation.

Innovations and opportunities can now be added using following innovation types:

Safety – can the product be safer?
Comfort – how can the product be more comfortable to use?
Durability – how can the product last longer?
New use – new use for a product?
Performance – how can the product be lighter, faster, stronger?
Assembly – is the product assembly too difficult and frustrating?
Recycling – how can the product be recycled?
Transport – can the product be transported cheaper or more efficiently?
Sustainability – can production, materials, design, transport, use be more sustainable?
Inclusivity – how can the product production, transport, use be more inclusive of all body types and cultures?

These types are not obligatory, and innovations and opportunities can be added without them.

We added them to help brands and innovators focus on product design aspects which require open innovation the most.

To learn more email Andrea at

Open innovation is a continuous project made of many little steps

open innovation project management

Two biggest errors in making your company an open innovation company are:

Error – open innovation is a one time project
Open innovation is an attitude towards innovation, marketing, sales, and everything else in business. Main goal of companies is to create value for customers through innovation. To do that well, companies need customer feedback. Highest quality customer feedback comes through open innovation. Therefore open innovation need never ends and needs continuous improvement.
Tip: never end open innovation, make it a continuous part of culture.

Error – organize open innovation in big difficult steps
Open innovation is best managed when organized in many small tasks, small tweaks, small changes. A nice sentence on one page, a button added in a newsletter, a small campaign, an 30 min Zoom training. A lot of small steps and efforts add up over time. Years later company is more competitive, more open, making more valuable products.
Tip: work in many small steps, avoid big steps which block growth.

Email Andrea at to plan your companies adoption of open innovation.

Do you take or give more?


This is a philosophical leadership article, appropriate for the end of the year.

Some leaders are good at taking. This is how they view business, marketing, sales, and innovation. They innovate in order to take attention, data, money, time from their customers, teams, community.

Other leaders are good at giving. They innovate to give value, knowledge, money. They empower their customers, team, community.

No one is just taking or just giving. And we can never take without giving, or give without taking. But it is important to question what dominates, in which direction does the balance tilt. If we, as leaders, are not keeping an eye on this, no one else will.

Ask yourself: Do I take or give more? If I am not happy with the answer, how can I change it? promotion in stores

supermarket open innovation

Physical stores are a great place to use to differentiate products from competition. Here are 3 ways can be used in stores:

Sales staff
Store staff should inform customers of the added benefit of buying products that use

In-store displays
Displays should include explaining what kind of innovation brand needs and what rewards it offers.

On product information
Adding a well designed sticker on products will engage customers more effectively and motivate them to purchase.

More importantly, there are two messages products with can display:
1) Help us improve the product – we listen to you,
2) Product improved by you – we listened to you.

Between two products, the one using will most likely be bought not only because of the cash rewards, but because of the added value of participation and openness.

To use for your consumer brand email Andrea at

Our favorite open innovation statements

open innovation

Recently we started posting open innovation statements on our social media. Each one explains in few words one aspect of open innovation. Below is a selection. For more statement visit our Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or LinkedIn.


open innovation

open innovation

open innovation

open innovation

open innovation

7 steps of open innovation company transformation


A company can be seen as an innovation manufacturer which buys and sells innovation, making open innovation a natural next step in growth, equal to sales. Therefore all companies should become open innovation companies in order to compete in buying innovation, just as they compete in selling it. Transforming a company into an open innovation company should be seamless. We recommend our 7 steps approach:

1) Accept
Open innovation is understood and accepted by all team members. This requires training and dialog.

2) Rebrand
Company communicates that it is not only as a seller but also as a buyer of innovation. This is a necessary and delicate step, unique to each company.

3) Tool up
Open innovation requires a platform. We recommend our, but any platform is good. Platform needs to connect all key team members with customers.

4) Educate
Customers are educated in how the company buys and uses open innovation. Open innovation promotion is constant and consistent, just like sales.

5) Listen
Once everything is set up and customers are informed it is time to listen. Time and attention are dedicated to listening to external innovators.

6) Answer
Even if not all innovation suggestions are accepted, they should all be answered and many should be rewarded for the effort.

7) Make
This is the final goal of open innovation – making better products thanks to external suggestions.


We can carefully guide companies through the 7 step open innovation transformation. Each company is unique. To start email Andrea at

5 best ideas from our "Innovate with 8 billion people" open talk

5 ideas

We had a nice open chat this Wednesday. Here are the 5 best ideas exchanged:

Next natural step
Open innovation is a natural progress of innovation development. All innovation starts with individual innovators, then grows into innovation and R&D teams, and finally opens up to include partners, customers, and external experts.

Equal to sales
Every market will be an open innovation market and every company will be an open innovation company. Listening to customers is equally important as selling to them.

Holistic approach
Open innovation can not be adopted as an isolated side project, but as a key element of the company culture.

Platforms are necessary
Companies feel customer need for more openness, but need digital tools to facilitate it.

Incremental is better
Open innovation is often blocked by big expectations and big projects. Our method of doing smaller projects with smaller rewards creates more activity and education.

Our consulting helps companies adopt open innovation with a unique and tested method. We will be discussing this method in coming posts. For more email Andrea at

Innovate with 8 billion people open Zoom talk notes

8 billion people

At 12:00 CET on Wednesday 23 November Andrea and Nikola will host an innovate with 8 billion people open Zoom talk. Everyone is welcome to join and participate in the talk.

To be better prepared download and read PDF notes for the open talk (they will slightly change):


To join the open Zoom talk click here when the time comes:


Innovate with 8 billion people - join our open Zoom talk on Wed 23 Nov

8 billion people

Today world population reached 8 billion people. Many of us were born in a world with a population of only 4 billion. We were educated by parents born in a world of a bit more than 2 billion.

How does this affect innovation, product design, business strategy, marketing, sales, SMBs?

In a world which keeps getting bigger, our customers are feeling smaller and more excluded. All the today’s challenges are too big for them – climate crisis, globalization, digitalization. Customers feel overwhelmed, stressed, and are passive. They do not feel in control.

Openness and open innovation are desperately needed remedy to motivate customers to make decisions faster. We must include them and shake them out of their passive routine. This is best done by asking them to participate through open activities. The age of them listening to brands is over. The age of them being part of brands is starting. This will bring back the world under their control and ownership.

We will host an open Zoom talk at 12:00 CET on Wednesday 23 November to discuss these topics. Feel free to just jump in. We planned for 30 mins but if it takes more we will keep going. Let’s discuss openly and see where it takes us. Anyone is welcome!

When the time comes just click here:


Passcode: 123
Meeting ID: 814 0839 9376

See you then :)

4 ways to promote your opportunities?

open innovation opportunity promotion

Once your opportunities are live, it is necessary to promote them so end-users of your products get interested and add innovations. Some brands are well known so minimal promotion on their websites, newsletter, and social media should get substantial results.

However, many brands make well respected products while they remain almost unknown. In such cases some more promotion is needed. We recommend these 4 steps:

1. Select a narrow group of end-users you can target
Do not try to reach everyone in the world immediately. First succeed with 5-10 local end-users and grow from there. Be patient and work in smaller steps.

2. Organize an in-person workshop
Do not rely only on digital, especially if your products are physical (tools for example) and your end-users do not know your brand well. Go to the end-users and talk to them in person in their workplace, and motivate them with your enthusiasm.

3. Leave posters in their workplace
Posters should clearly ask them to add innovations to your opportunities. Also mention the reward. Include QR codes to your opportunity and place them in most visited workplace area.

4. Add stickers to your products
Adding a sticker directly to your product is the most powerful way of including end-users in innovation. It shows real dedication. Include QR code to your opportunity or product. While a sticker with a QR code is not the most beautiful addition to product design aesthetics, it does add enormous relationship value (designers can surely find a clever way to add it).

For help with promotion email Andrea at

Why do we use free text for innovation suggestions?

form vs free text

Open innovation is the most important thing a company can do – it combines innovation and marketing into one. And marketing always relied on market research – asking customers what they want through polls, interviews, focus groups. But market research was always limited by technology and company culture.

Research was limited by selection of who is asked, when they are asked, where they are asked, and what they are asked. Asking a specific person specific questions in a specific place at a specific time is greatly limiting feedback.

Truly open feedback allows everyone to say whatever they want, where they want, and when they want. No selections, no locations, no time limits, and no premade multiple choices.

This is why in add innovation form we use free text input because we believe end-users should be free to write whatever they like and their expression should not be limited. If any multiple choices are present they can only be an addition, a guideline, and not the main form of expression.

We feel that limiting end-user suggestions with specific questions and deadlines will lower the trust, expression, and overall benefit of open innovation – this is why we will always rely on free text input.

To start using email Andrea at for sustainability

open innovation sustainability

There are two ways a brand can approach sustainability:

1) Promoting their sustainability projects without being open for cooperation, assuming they can do everything alone or with few selected partners,

2) Being open and seeking help from everyone, understanding the complexity of sustainability.

There is no sustainability problem which can be solved in a closed manner. Sustainability is not divided by brands, teams, countries. It is an issue which involves everything and everyone on the planet. It requires cooperation and openness we have never seen before.

We suggest to all brands to make as many open innovation opportunities for sustainability innovation – internally, with partners, externally. Every brand should communicate that they are willing to listen to any idea, any suggestion. Improvements in efficiency from talks with employees, partners, and end-users add up and move the sustainability forward.

Being open is not about working with selected partners on selected projects. Sustainability requires a radical change in what it means to be an open brand. It requires openness towards everyone and in all topics. This is the only way blocks can be removed and progress accelerated. offers unlimited number of opportunities so you can add as many as needed. We will help you design and promote your sustainability opportunities. We will guide you through the learning process towards real results. But it is up to you to start today.

Sustainability is not something any of us can do alone.

To start email Andrea at is for product innovation

product open innovation

Based on feedback from our clients, we decided to focus only on product innovation.

We have replaced previous innovation types (my idea, product, project, trend, and problem) with new ones: improvement suggestion, new use suggestion, new product suggestion. These innovation types are not obligatory and serve as a guideline. Innovators will be able to add innovations without selecting a type. This allows them to write more freely but if they need a direction they can use these types.

Additionally open brands will be able to add text description to their products.

These changes are now live on add innovation form, innovation list, innovation page, and product page. Corresponding changes are made in APPS. Open brands can start adding product descriptions.

Our aim is to make it easier for end-users to add product focused innovations, helping brands make better products. After careful evaluations in the past months we are confident these changes will make the communication between product end-users and product designers more effective. We will continue to evaluate and improve.

For help or more information email Andrea at

Openness consulting makes business more humane


Openness is our main mission. We promote openness by helping companies to include customers, end-users, and other external experts in their decisions. Our platform focuses on opening up product innovation for SMBs. Our consulting approach is wider in helping companies be more open to provide more value to customers.

Openness can be seen as an opposite trend to centralization and automation but we do not see it that way. The bigger the influence of a company the more it will benefit from end-users and customer feedback. The more influential the algorithms are, the more value they will provide with direct feedback. Openness is not a zero-sum addition to current processes – it is an upgrade, an improvement. Openness increases humanity, empathy, trust, transparency, and satisfaction for both management and end-users.

Our consulting can improve:
Marketing & brand strategy – including end-users feedback and increasing trust,
Sales – making it more of a dialog,
Product design & innovation – through open innovation,
Algorithm design – adding humanity with customer and end-user knowledge (not data),
Teamwork – adding openness internally improves job satisfaction.

Email Andrea at to discuss how openness consulting can help your business.

Open call - Fiam, Geoplast, Lovato, Linea Flesh are offering 40 new innovation rewards

open call

Brands on can reward any innovation sent to them. User is eligible for a reward by simply adding a brand to their innovation. No opportunity is needed. This is an Innovation rewards feature.

Fiam, Geoplast, Lovato, and Linea Flesh have started using Innovation rewards and are offering each 10 rewards of 50 EUR. This is a total of 40 rewards and 2,000 EUR. They are interested to learn from their employees, partners, and end-users of their products – especially construction workers, factory workers, electricians, installers.

To add an innovation click on brands below to open their profiles and then click “add innovation” button. If you have any problems email and we will reply quickly.


Fiam is always interested to hear from end-users of their tools.


Geoplast is interested in innovations in sustainable construction.


Lovato is dedicated to energy efficiency in residential and commercial buildings.


Linea Flesh
Linea Flesh is looking for innovations related to biomedical and pharma industries.

Better informed product design is more successful

open design

Being open is to collect more information, to be better informed. The more informed product design is, the better product it will make. Openness does not change the role of a designer – designers must always make informed design decisions. Openness means that the market is more complex and competitive, and designers must collect more information.

Designers have always looked for new ways to inform their work. What changed now is that it is not enough to use established research methods such as polling, interviews, focus groups. They are limiting through choice of questions, participants, and deadlines. Since end-users now have constant access to internet and want less controlled conversations these research methods can be seen as restricting.

Contemporary open design is moving towards digital, always accessible, direct without middlemen, controlled by end-users, and transparent. Any restriction of this communication results in less information and potentially poorer products. While time and focus of designers and end-users is hard to control, giving them access to easy-to-use direct tech solution offers immediate improvement.

To use to collect end-user feedback in product design email Andrea at

5 examples how real and ideal product use differ

product innovation

Here are 5 examples how end-users can contribute breaking the barrier between ideal product and real product use with

Product safety is hard to evaluate in the internal design process. The actual end-users of products, people who use the products daily for months or years, are the biggest experts when it comes to their risk of injury.
Example: factory workers innovating factory tools to reduce injury and stress.

End-users who use the product often and over long periods of time have much more knowledge about the product ergonomy than internal design teams. Internal design teams can not dedicate so much time to such level of testing and often sacrifice ergonomy for design standards.
Example: office workers innovating office furniture to increase computer work comfort.

End-users with non-standard body types and health conditions can offer valuable feedback to reduce their discomfort.
Example: hospital patients innovating care processes to reduce patient stress.

In reality products are used in complex environments as end-users integrate many products in their unique experience. Advertising can suggest ideal environments for products, but this is always far from reality.
Example: drivers innovating car accessories to reduce lower back pain on long drives.

Product performance is often measured by standardized metrics by elite performers. Actual product performance reality is that it is far more complex and often subjective.
Example: weekend cyclists innovating bicycles to adjust them to more comfort and away from elite performance standards.

To start an project for your product email Andrea at

How to use for marketing

open innovation marketing is great for innovation, but it can also be a powerful tool for marketing.

Regular marketing channels are less and less supportive of innovation. Retail, advertising, and PR prefer to stick to proven things that generate low risk revenue. For them innovation is always questionable because it is more difficult to understand and adopt. This leaves companies that innovate without the necessary support.

But companies can use to target specific customers, also in tens of thousands, invite them to submit innovations, and reward them. This can be similar to offering coupons or discounts, only that it requires customers to add an innovation.

If 20,000 customers are invited using, most likely most of them will show interest and remember the product and brand because of the novelty and the reward. is not a known channel which they got used to ignoring.

And if a brand rewards 1,000 customers 50 EUR each, this is still a cost of only 50,000 EUR for a campaign which reached tens of thousands and had very high engagement with 1,000. While this performance might not work for non-innovative consumer products, it can be very powerful with more complex, expensive, and innovative products, especially in B2B.

To learn more how can be used in marketing email Andrea Toniolo at

Geoplast vs Peri - without open innovation customers lose

geoplast peri geopanel

Geoplast, our client, is a medium size highly innovative Italian company focused on making construction sustainable. Peri is a multinational leader in the construction industry. Geoplast has a limited access to the market due to its size, while Peri has, in lack of a better word, unlimited access to the global market.

In 2005 Geoplast created the first successful recycled plastic formwork – Geopanel. Recycled plastic formwork was a holy grail for the construction industry – an innovation which must happen and the only question was when and by whom. Many tried to replace unpractical wood and metal formworks with recycled plastic, but failed. Geoplast did it.

The world desperately needed to replace wood and metal formworks with recycled plastic because of sustainability, safety, and efficiency. One of the main values of recycled plastic formwork is that they can be reused 10 times more than wooden panels. In spite of this great and obvious objective need, the market did not change. Geoplast gradually increased sales of their Geopanel but all the big formwork producers were quiet and building sites were still full outdated formworks.

A decade later, in 2016, Peri launched their own plastic formwork – Duo. It was a copy of Geopanel. Duo was even awarded for innovation and quickly spread globally. Soon it’s revenue was several hundred times bigger than that of Geopanel, which was available a decade earlier. Geoplast sued Peri and – after 6 years – is still involved in an expensive legal battle preventing Peri to promote Duo.

In this mess, everyone is a loser. Recycled plastic formwork is one of thousands of changes necessary to change construction, and reduce pollution, climate crisis, and other risks. Because a multinational chose not to include external innovation in their profitability, innovation adoption has been blocked for more than 15 years. I can only hope that medical research is not managed in such a way that poor innovation management deprives us access to life saving medicine.

While many companies know how to manage open innovation with licensing, partnerships, joint-ventures, etc, Geoplast vs Peri shows that also many companies are simply unable. Peri chose not to cooperate with Geoplast for a decade, and then simply copied a product causing an additional legal delay, depraving the public of a necessary innovation. Decades ago Nike revolutionized sponsorship contracts by partnering with athletes like Jordan. Some industries and companies are still in the dark ages when it comes to business structures which support innovation.

It is a responsibility of companies – especially multinationals which control the market – to practice open innovation. Their shareholders and owners should accept that not all innovation will come from their own organization. They must know how to profit from external innovation. No company should generate profit by depraving its market of innovation and not all innovation can be created internally.

How to include end-users in your innovation

end-user innovation

It is challenging for product designers to experience their products as end-users. A chef can try their dish, a game developer can play their game, a film director can watch their film, but even in such simple examples product designers do not share the perspective of an end-user.

In more complex engineering products it is easier to design a technical solution because problems are independent of consumers – making a car engine or a water pump more efficient does not depend on consumer impression. However, this is a wrong assumption – such solutions must be installed, used, maintained by people who are in this case end-users.

This is why it is crucial to include end-users in innovation.

With it is easy to include end-users in innovation: publish an opportunity focusing on a specific use of your product and invite a group of end-users to participate. You can easily explain to them what kind of feedback you need and reward them with cash for their innovation suggestions.

Read about our first case end-user innovation study here.

If you need more help to include end-users in your innovation process email Andrea at

5 ways brands can use

open innovation benefits for brands allows brands to give cash rewards to end users of their products for their innovation suggestions. Here are 5 ways brands can use

1 More competitive feedback
All brands want to get feedback, but most brands do not want to pay for it. Brands that start rewarding user feedback with cash will have an advantage, and will get the best feedback.

2 Unique innovation approach
No designer can actually imagine how it feels to use a product over and over again. Safety, ergonomy, real environment, integrations, new uses are few product aspects which are best understood by product users. Brands that collect this feedback will have more competitive products.

3 Positive way to offer customer support
Customer support is based on negative experiences because users are motivated only by frustration. With users are motivated to be creative and innovative. This is a positive relationship which prevents negative experiences.

4 Accelerated training
Winning innovation proves that the user understood the product very well. Adding a winning innovation requires substantial experience and understanding of the product, and is a great way to motivate training. It can be used as part of training or as an independent motivator.

5 Two way customer relationship
Customer relationships are moving towards two-way exchanges more and more. ads a new channel to the customer relationship which is beneficial for both brands and customers. It is better at building loyalty than discounts, gifts, free trials.

To start using for your brand email Andrea at

New feature - Innovation rewards

Goal of is to help brands and users innovate easier together. This includes brands paying users (innovators) for their innovations (posts). So far only way for brands to pay users was to post an opportunity and reward innovations which respond to it. This meant that users had to focus on what brand defined in that opportunity.

Our new feature – Innovation rewards – allows brands to reward ANY innovation which tags their brand. While Opportunities feature focuses users on a specific need a brand has, Innovation rewards is much more open allowing users to surprise brands. We see this as a great step towards increasing openness and cooperation between brands and users.

If you manage an open brand on, log in to your OI apps and go here and set number of rewards and amount per reward. This will reflect in your total innovation budget on your brand page.

We also launched our Start page which should make it easier to access opportunities, innovations, brands, and products.

Fiam - our first successful case study


After two and a half years of development we are happy that we have our first and successful case study – Fiam.

Fiam is an Italian innovator of semi-automation tools and was seeking ergonomy suggestions from end users. Only way to get ergonomy feedback is from people who use their tools daily in real work situations. Fiam published an opportunity, connected with end users, and quickly received innovations. Innovators were successfully paid. The whole process took less than a month and was managed by Andrea Toniolo.

This case study a great example of how enables innovation on a new level. We allow brands to quickly publish opportunities and enable innovators to easily suggest innovations. And – most importantly – innovators are paid. Before us, open innovation projects were made by large companies and for high level experts. They were slow and expensive. We made open innovation faster, easier, and accessible to everyone.

This is an important step towards making open innovation part of every company in the world.

Thank you to everyone for making this happen!

Learn from The Masters Of Innovation tomorrow at 10:30 CET

masters of innovation

Tomorrow at 10:30 CET we will host an open talk with The Masters Of Innovation – business leaders who successfully manage high rate of innovation in competitive industries:

– Mirco Pegoraro, CEO of Geoplast,
– Nicola Bacchetta, CMO of Fiam,
– Michele Lovato, CEO of Lovato.

This is a great opportunity to ask questions which you can email to Andrea, ask during the live talk, or ask later via comments.

Here are some questions we will discuss:

– How did you decide to make the first product?
– What is the biggest problem you solved with your product?
– How do you discover problems? Your own design intuition, personal experience, research, feedback from customers?
– What are the most important factors in maintaining a high rate of innovation?
– What are the biggest challenges in selling innovative products?
– How relevant is the local Veneto culture for innovation?

Read more about the event here.


Make Salone del Mobile more open

salone del mobile

Salone del Mobile is one of the biggest furniture fairs in the world. It showcases the latest furniture innovations and designs.

Innovation and design are influenced by intuition and by anonymous trend data, but should also include conversations with stakeholders. Our goal is that innovation and design become more participatory by including more external stakeholders. We believe this is better for furniture brands and customers.

For example, furniture design will benefit from feedback by people who install the furniture, or by families who have to switch to working from home.

Take a small step towards making furniture innovation and design more open – add innovations to these Salone del Mobile 2022 brands:


Il Giornale di Vicenza promotes Fiam opportunity

Il Giornale di Vicenza Fiam

We are very proud that Il Giornale di Vicenza wrote an article about Fiam innovation opportunity on

Read the full article here.

This is a good example of how promoting open innovation offers two benefits to brands: it attracts innovators (innovation) and it promotes the brand as innovative, open, and competitive (marketing). Promoting the opportunity on social media, advertising, press will be more beneficial for sales, brand awareness, and loyalty than most other types of content (company news, technical information, fairs, etc).

Customers are saturated by content but they are still searching for something new and different – open innovation opportunities offer this.

We congratulate Fiam and thank Il Giornale di Vicenza. We expect more brands to follow the path.

Fiam's first opportunity focuses on safety and ergonomy

We are very proud to announce the first Fiam opportunity.

Fiam is an Italian company which designs and manufactures semi-automation tools used by factory workers. Fiam is using to collect innovation feedback from factory workers who use their tools. Their goal is to maintain leadership in safety and ergonomy.

Fiam has recognized that there is an innovation limitation which can be overcome only if they communicate directly with end-users. True innovation in safety and ergonomy requires high quality communication with end users.

As a solution, provides Fiam with an always open channel to end users, and a reward system. Factory workers who use Fiam tools can send public or private innovation suggestions to Fiam directly at any time. There are no deadlines or any other limitations making communication between Fiam and end users always open and easy. Also Fiam can then reward all relevant innovations and has started by offering fifteen 100 EUR rewards.

Innovate with Fiam here.

Tips for promoting innovation

innovation teleport

Most companies, even the more organized and successful ones, fail at promoting their innovations effectively. For example, one of the top engineering companies promoted a hydrogen car innovation, but they made it difficult for the audience and press to notice and understand it: they announced the innovation on Twitter but not on their website news, the press release was a PDF and not a page, PDF used a different title and terminology probably because different team worked on it…

Innovation includes promotion and adopting by customers, otherwise it is only an invention which no one uses. And promotion today consists of many technical details which are very easy to learn but often ignored. Failing at these details lowers the rate of innovations.

These are our tips for effectively promoting innovation:

Innovation promotion should be consistent across all channels
All the content – long, short, social texts, images, audio, and video files – should be made or at least supervised by the same team to make sure all terminology, titles, and visuals deliver the same message.

Publish the content at the same time on all channels
Make a list of all channels – home page, news, blog, newsletters, social, webinars – and publish the content on all of them on the same day. Include all languages and all local channels. Reducing languages and channels lowers the perceived importance of the innovation.

Make it easy to share
Do not rely only on platforms which are hard to share from (for example, Youtube is better for video sharing than Vimeo). Make sure all website pages have sharing preview images. All images should be downloadable. Avoid using PDFs. Try sharing your yourself and you will see if it is easy or not. And finally make a short suggestion to the audience to share – they often forget.

To get teleports, lets first promote innovation effectively using above basics.

Innovation vs recession

innovation recession

Recession starts when some companies discover the limit of how much they can push up the pricing of their products and stocks using press and advertising. As the prices up sales start reducing and revenues drop. This shows up negatively on reports, and investors, press, and consumers start panicking. This negatively affects the whole economy.

One way to recognize recession is when unrelated assets behave the same. For example: Ethereum, Tesla stock, Microsoft stock, and Apple stock are all dropping. It is impossible that all four had a problem at the same moment and therefore their drop is motivated by the general sentiment.

In such a situation it is important to recognize which assets can regain and increase value after the recession. These assets are a good investment opportunity during recession. Rate of innovation is one of the best predictors of this opportunity.

Assets of companies and projects that have continuously launched new products offering new solutions, adopted and created new technologies, and fully focused on their customers will most likely rebound and grow after the recession. Companies that did not communicate their innovation well, did not focus on customer but only on internal innovation, did not adopt new technologies, will most likely be severely damaged by the recession and might not rebound.

Innovations are always valuable because they truly change the world.

How you can benefit from being an innovator on

innovation a day

Innovators are users who can freely register, add innovations, and win opportunity awards. Anyone can be an innovator including product end-users, brand customers, and employees. Innovators can benefit from using in various ways:

Win cash rewards as an end-user or a customer
Adding innovations to opportunities makes innovators eligible to cash rewards. is more focused on distributing many smaller cash rewards (under 1,000 EUR) so possibility of winning is high. Any end-user and customer can apply, and it is always a plus if you are an expert product user or you know the problems a product can solve.

Win cash rewards as an employee is also available only to employees of a brand using Employees can participate in internal opportunities for which they can win cash rewards. Winning rewards can be considered a bonus on top of their salary, and there is usually less competition for internal opportunities.

Gaining visibility as an innovator
Innovators are usually experts who had a hard time to be visible on other platforms and systems. can be a platform for them to demonstrate their expertise and build authority on specific topics. While most other platforms force users to compete with generic content, is a niche platform filtering anything that is not focused on innovation. This is a big plus for experts.

Meeting other innovators
While at the moment we do not allow connections between innovators (we will later), it is still possible to find and get in touch with other innovators by browsing innovations and clicking on innovation authors. Most innovators should be passionate about innovation so it should be easy to find a match.

Learning about innovation
Being up to date with latest innovations in various industries, categories, localities is very easy with Tags are particularly good for this. Exploring unfamiliar tags can be fun and educational. Just open the innovations side bar and choose tags from the pulldown.

Become an innovator on – register and add your first innovation

Every innovation wants to be global

innovation world

In theory innovation lifecycle consists of steps similar to these (percentage is global adoption):
1) 0 % – invention, something new was made,
2) 0-1 % – small group of early adopters, usually local,
3) 1-3 % – few new groups and localities have been added,
4) 3-5 % – accelerated growth, competitors copy the innovation and add many new localities,
5) 30-90 % – growth slows down as it reaches cultural and other blocks,
6) 90-100 % – innovation is global and accepted by everyone who can use it.

Very few innovations reach step 6 even after decades. For example, even after enormous marketing efforts 58 % of world population has access to internet, 83 % are smart phones users, and 59 % are fully vaccinated against Coronavirus.

Some companies misunderstand that innovation ends at step 3. This kind of thinking limits design, investment, growth, and – most importantly – access to innovation for many around the world. Companies should always create innovations for global adoption. After all local clients adopted it, companies should continue to invest in marketing to customers in other localities and never stop expanding.

Companies should not block the spread of their innovation by stopping to invest. If they do stop, most likely their competitors will take over their market.

Andrea Toniolo to speak at Il Salone della CSR on Friday, 29 April

Andrea Toniolo

Andrea Toniolo, founder, will speak at Il Salone della CSR in Vicenza on Friday, 29 April 2022.

Andrea will explain how accelerates company innovation by motivating customers to participate. The CSR conference will include speakers from Marzotto, Diesel, and Verona University. More about Il Salone della CSR.

Register for the event

Watch live streaming on Youtube

Language: Italian
Time: event starts at 10:00 CET, Andrea is speaking at 11:00 CET
Date: Friday, 29 April 2022
Location: Università di Verona, Viale Margherita 87, Vicenza, Italy

See Andrea’s innovations on or connect on LinkedIn.

Food innovations on

Food is one product which got worse over time – worse for those who consume it and worse for the environment. It is one of the top industries which needs to accelerate innovation towards healthier and sustainable alternatives. Here are our top food picks from…


Plant-based meat will be featured in Delta Airlines menus
Cultivated salmon can be healthier for consumption due to lack of microplastics and mercury

Walmart invests in vertical farming startup Plenty to provide California customers with locally grown plant food

Beef linked to deforestation is removed from UK supermarkets
The Elmar cutting board is hidden in the drawer of the kitchen. This solution reduces the space while maintaining stability.The Elmar philosophy to optimize space is applied in all convertible tables




Peel & Stick
Taco Lover’s Pass



food composter


add your innovation

The importance of innovation


Our platform and services are dedicated to the promotion of innovation. We want to help everyone, especially smaller companies, to accelerate innovation and deliver more value to customers. We also want that companies listen more to customers, making customers active participants instead of passive consumers.

Due to the current political turmoil, political worldwide content has increased and pushed back innovation content. This is not good, and – to reduce it – we will double our efforts to promote innovation, and connect companies and innovators. No matter what happens in the political world, innovation is still the driving force behind most of the positive changes in our lives. That must never be forgotten. This is what we believe in.

Saying that, we hope that the conflicts resolve as fast as possible with least pain for citizens on all sides.

Help us promote innovation by adding and sharing innovation on

Educate customers about innovation, luxury, sustainability...

soft values

How many customers can understand which foods are healthy, which clothing is luxurious, which car is innovative, which house is sustainable, which company is open to their feedback?

Customers can easily understand if products are cheaper or more expensive because everyone knows arithmetic. But when it comes to more complex soft values such as health, luxury, innovation, sustainability, openness, they experience difficulty and can make wrong purchasing choices.

Main causes are fierce competition which motivates brands to fake these values, and lack of customer education. Most customers think only vegetables are healthy, luxury is always expensive, innovation is a change in product size, and openness is a fast reply from brand’s social media account. Customers have difficulty making an informed choice and end up paying for poorer quality.

To compete with complex soft values first educate your team and then invest in customer education. Customer education will increase customer loyalty and reduce competitors. Initial investment is minimal – short videos and texts will do the job.

Design your open innovation mix

open innovation mix

Theory is great but what should companies actually do? Here is a list of open innovation and innovation content projects to do – making your open innovation mix.


Innovation projects

Write down the innovation strategy including customer, partner, and internal feedback.
Suggested frequency: two per year.

Publish innovation opportunities to customers, partners, and internally. These can be simple online pages, documents, presentations.
Suggested frequency: few per year.

Innovation partners
Make a presentation about your skills or ideas and talk to companies and individuals who you think might be interested in working with you on them.
Suggested frequency: one per month.

Remind your customers, partners, and internal teams how innovative your company is, how you innovate, what your plans us, how they can innovate with your company.
Suggested frequency: every quarter.


Innovation content projects

Innovation posts
Publish quick and easy explanations of your innovations, products, and projects on your innovation channel.
Suggested frequency: few per week.

Short videos
Publish 10 – 60 sec videos which explain your innovations on all major social media.
Suggested frequency: one per week.

Long videos
These videos explain your main innovations, products, and projects. They are used for years ahead.
Suggested frequency: one every two months.

Renders and infographics
These are images which visually explain your innovations, products, and projects. They are used for years ahead.
Suggested frequency: one per month.

Landing pages
Make dedicated landing pages which explain your innovation and call customers and partners to participate in it.
Suggested frequency: you should have at least one innovation landing page.

Small campaigns
Small campaigns include articles, newsletter, digital advertising, and social media, and are great way to communicate more important innovation information.
Suggested frequency: one per week.

Big campaigns
Big campaigns include press, events, interviews, and all other digital and non-digital channels. They are used for product launches and similar big events.
Suggested frequency: two per year.

Open events
Open events can be digital or non-digital. They are an opportunity to answer questions from the public and are important in building an open rapport with customers and partners. They can also be internal.
Suggested frequency: one per month.


We provide features and services to help you upgrade your open innovation mix. Contact Andrea at for more information.

Alternative innovation & marketing terminology

monopoly terminology innovation

Here are some alternative definitions of popular terms used every day in management. Maybe they can give you a different point of view.

Real purpose of a company
A way to create a monopoly
A way to destroy a monopoly

Company which does not need to innovate
Company which increases costs of basic operations for everyone else
Company which works to reduce innovation by other companies

Open innovation
Highest ROI activity a company can do
A way for smaller companies to grow rapidly
A way to make a monopoly innovative
A way to shorten the existence of a monopoly
Most important brand equity metric

An innovation created to increase the soft (imaginary) value of companies and products
A way to make empty promises to customers (not always)
A company change process which includes steps: outsider, signaling participant, real participant, leader
A way to crash the economy
Cultural weapon

Innovation plan
Consolidation of conflicts between innovation and brand

Being powerful and courageous enough to listen to others
The cheapest and the most efficient market research

A way to distract, bankrupt, and destroy the monopoly challengers

There is no innovation without innovation content


Open innovation is research & development adapted to current culture and technology. Decades ago innovation was reduced to closed research & development. There was much less competition and globalization so closed research & development was low risk.

Today with 3 biggest change forces – digitalization, globalization, sustainability – closed research & development is a high risk. Digitalization and sustainability require skills which are usually not present in companies, and globalization increases competition and diversity of non-local markets.

Open innovation is the most efficient way to manage this complexity and attract various experts from different markets.

But open innovation does not happen by itself. In order to get experts to contribute to company innovation they need to perceive the company as innovative and understand its innovations. To achieve this company needs to publish innovation content. Without innovation content experts will not know how to contribute, especially in the case of SMBs which ca be very niche and less visible.

Innovation today is mostly open innovation and it depends on innovation content especially for the majority of companies which are not well known global brands. If companies do not produce innovation content and do not openly innovate, they will rely only on entertainment & sales content. This type of content can boost short term stats but it does not help the long term growth.

Conclusion is that there is no innovation without innovation content. Motivating people outside the company to do something for the company always requires a lot of promotion and education.

3 innovation promotion steps

innovation content steps

Companies often neglect to promote their innovations – they either do not mention their innovations at all or explain them poorly. Here are 3 steps every company should do to promote their innovation:

Use the word “innovation”
Many companies do not refer to themselves as innovative even though they are. Maybe because “innovation” sometimes seems like an empty buzzword. But I still advice using it as a first step. Once it is used it forces you to explain how you are innovative which is not an empty buzzword.

Practice explaining your innovations
Practice making copy, images, renders, infographics, short and long videos, live events, landing pages which explain your innovations. When you start explaining your innovations is hard, but your confidence and efficiency will grow quickly with practice. Main goal of explaining innovations is to synthesize the complexity and make it easy for customers to gain initial motivation. Once they are motivated they will continue to expand their understanding of your innovations on their own.

Make a separate channel for your innovation content
In this channel publish only innovation explanations for your products, services, projects. Do not add any other content here. On we offer this feature, but you can also make a separate Twitter account, Facebook page, newsletter. Promote it on all other channels. It will have a smaller audience and less engagements but it will have a much higher lead quality.

Email Andrea at to learn more about our features & services for promotion of innovation.

Metaverse for companies


Metaverse represents virtual and augmented reality technologies which have been in development for a while. Metaverse is a main components of web 3.0 and will become a standard communication channel.

With web 1.0 companies adopted email, websites, forums. This was a shock to their cultures and budgets. After almost 3 decades some companies are still struggling to adopt web 1.0. With web 2.0 companies changed and invested even more to adopt social media, mobile, AI. Web 2.0 created a bigger barrier between adopters and others. A lot of stagnation was caused by lack of adoption of web 2.0, while adopters grew exponentially. Web 3.0 will be much harder and more expensive to adopt, and will create a bigger gap between adopters and non-adopters.

Main driver of web 3.0 divide will be the metaverse. Metaverse requires substantial company changes and investment while creating an enormous difference in customer experience. Companies that adopt metaverse will be way ahead in the eyes of the customers. Metaverse will include virtual and augmented reality design, engineering, training, meetings, tools, services, sales, shopping, experiences.

Web 1.0 used a hard to carry desktop screen. Web 2.0 used a mobile screen we could easily carry everywhere. Web 3.0 is a screenless information layer over what we see (augmented reality) or in a completely new virtual reality.

Changing processes, training staff, and investing in metaverse will not be possible for majority of SMBs and startups. There will be plenty of service providers offering easy solutions, but companies that succeed will be the ones which use expensive, custom, unique solutions, and not the ones which use cheaper, easy, premade solutions. Web 3.0 and metaverse will be the most destructive forces giving an enormous boost to adopters. They will create a communication layer which further makes product innovation less relevant, making all the innovative SMBs and startups less independent.

Our advice is to prepare now. Spreading the changes and investment over longer time is a better option.

Web 3.0 is here!

Web is the most dominant media today. TV, radio, paper, and other old media have been loosing relevance for decades. Web has basically became the main way all cultures globally exchange value. Not only that it delivers information but also is integral in production and trade. Web versions include upgrades of main web technologies and culture, and are driven by end user adoption.

So far there have been two web upgrades:

Web 1.0 was the first web which introduced websites, domain names, email, e-commerce, blogging, forums, username & password login. Example brands are Amazon, eBay.

Web 2.0 was the first upgrade which introduced social media, AI, mobile, user generated content, online software (SaaS). Example brands are Google, Facebook (now Meta).

First two web versions had a huge impact on the global economy, culture, and politics which affected every company and individual. Web 2.0 had a greater impact than web 1.0, and web 3.0 will be even more powerful. Web 3.0 is happening right now. It is a culmination of many trends such as blockchain, AI, VR, Coronavirus crisis, and is rapidly accelerating.

In future articles I will be writing more about specific changes, but at this point, at the start of the 2022, I wanted to emphasize that web 3.0 is here and companies need to work even harder than before to adopt it to remain competitive. Not all companies need to change their products but all companies must adapt their marketing and communication on all levels.

Web 3.0 is here and it should be taken seriously.

How to be an innovator in 2022?


There are three attitudes a person can have towards an innovation: support, don’t care, block. Same person can be supportive of one innovation, while blocking another.

But most people are not aware of their attitude and role in innovation, and act as simple consumers, not as innovators. They do not perceive their importance in innovation and therefore are not fully empowered.

One of our goals at is that everyone has a clear understanding of their role in innovation and is fully empowered. That they know that they are important and can impact innovation much more than just mere consumers – that they are innovators.

Ever since I started using I became passionate about some innovations and lost interest in others. Time will tell if my choices are correct ones, but the more important change is that I started evaluating brands and products as vehicles for innovation. This is a big change from my previous views as a basic consumer.

My suggestion is to treat our own innovation support, passivity, and blocking, as very important, because each one of us has the power to buy, share, or ignore an innovation. And this power should not be taken likely.

See you in 2022!

Biggest innovation trends now


Without updating innovation processes companies can not create competitive innovation. Here are the biggest innovation trends your company should apply:

Decentralization is a management approach which includes as many decision makers as possible. Being centralized is a risk. Everything proves that single person or small teams can hit the jackpot sometimes but not consistently in the long run. Decentralize innovation from a single person or a closed team by including more teams, customers, partners.

Unless your company has strict security protocols you should be using the collective power of the “crowd” – your customers, partners, everyone. Crowdsourcing is not decentralization because it does not share decision making but it collects information and knowledge from everyone it can.

Decentralization and crowdsourcing will not be very effective if the company is not transparent and open, if it does not share more about itself and its goals. People who need to be included in decentralization and crowdsourcing are sensitive to company transparency. The more open the company is, the better.

Data & AI
Supporting above trends with data & AI can be very powerful. Sharing data and AI reports with customers can educate and empower them, and position your company as more open. However, using data & AI without above management and cultural changes will only entrench the outdated innovation methods and block the change.

Big change! We added product pages and brand & product innovation ranking

more innovative

We added new features which I believe make a profound change.

We added single product pages which allow easier way to learn and share product information. Our goal is to inform users on how innovative single products are. This is our first step and we will keep expanding on a single product information.

We are now listing brands and products by how many innovations and important rates they have. Brands and products shown on top the brand and product list pages have the most innovations and important rates which means that they are most likely considered the most innovative. Innovations can be added both by brands and users, but most likely they will be dominantly added by users. This feature will quickly inform users which brand and product are considered innovative by the general public.

These changes are perfectly aligned with our mission to increase innovation by connecting brands and users. This includes allowing users to have a voice in what is innovative, and to clearly inform them.

Try Brand list and Product list.

In the search bar you can turn of listing by innovations and use the alphabetical list of brands and products.

Elon Musk is the messenger of change

elon musk

Before the 80s marketing was focused on the big four – science, engineering, innovation, and design because this was the best way to compete. Unfortunately, in the 80s companies and investors realized they can make lower quality products while using mass media advertising to sell them. The age of marriage between superficial advertising and financialization started reaching its peak in 2010s. Science, engineering, innovation, design remained as empty buzzwords. Customers started thinking science is a high school class, engineering is something developing countries needed, innovation is a new Coca Cola taste, and design is something that has reached its peak centuries ago. The only thing that changed through extreme competition was the advertising and financial products.

An individual is not someone who changes but a messenger of change that is coming. When Elon Musk became the richest individual in the world he delivered this message: science, innovation, engineering, and design are relevant again. Elon changed cultural values that dominated most of the global society for half a century. He shifted our appreciation from Warren Buffet – who makes money with cheap consumer goods and financial services, to himself – who makes electric cars, rockets, and solar panels. This change if profound.

Science, engineering, innovation, and design can not work unless the global culture does not accept them as they should be accepted. Us humans are very flexible and we adopt different values every few decades. We are easy to change. Mass media – press, radio, television, and now internet and social media – are tools used to change our values. Before there were big differences in values between geographic regions, but today these differences are minimal. We are all changing in the same direction which is a great opportunity and a big risk.

The message that Elon Musk brings is that we are changing towards science, engineering, innovation, and design, away from cheap, superficial, financialized products which pollute. This is good news. Participate in this change on

What I learned after adding more than 140 innovations

nikola tosic

As a founder of I was the first user or, as we say, innovator. I registered on 18 September 2020 and in 14 months I added 141 innovations and rated 435 innovations as important. Every time I started using a new publishing platform or social media I was slow, and was not different. I was a bit blocked about what to write, but eventually I accelerated and discovered my style and interests. Here are my main impressions:

I learned more about things that interest me
Even after working in some domains for decades I was still surprised by innovations others posted. I found this little reality check very useful.

I discovered new interests
I had no idea that I would enjoy biotech, health, and pharma as much. I did not post so much about it but I found myself constantly interested. I only need to find a way to quickly find innovations and brands. I only wish we already had a biotech, health, and pharma innovators and brands that posted often so I can learn more.

I started to evaluate media and products as innovation
Before I could be distracted much easier and I was engaging news and media on a more reactionary basis. I still like fun and engaging content but I am much more objective in evaluating news, entertainment, and products. I could say that my world view shifted a bit towards being more objective.

I gained more confidence in my knowledge and authority in my work
Adding 141 and rating 435 innovations means I read almost 300 of innovations by other people. This is less than one innovation in 5 mins a day. Although I spend much more time on other social media (Twitter, Linkedin, TikTok, Youtube, Facebook) time spent on was much more effective in informing and teaching me. As all these minutes added over months I felt better and better about the experience and was more motivated to add and read. was a positive experience for me.

Less obvious innovation methods


Innovation is not only the creation of new technologies, but includes all kinds of changes which can appear smaller but are actually very impactful. Here are few suggestions:

Replacing virgin with recycled materials and making a product easier to recycle.
Example: clothing, which is made from recycled fabrics, is recycled.

Changing the purpose of a product or a project so it avoids obsolesce and neglect.
Example: building is repurposed as an urban farm instead of being demolished.

New uses
Final users suggest new uses of an existing product making it more valuable.
Example: WD 40.

Modernizing the product by replacing its old technologies and materials with new ones.
Example: using healthier ingredients in fast food.

Examine your product and project portfolio and see how you can apply above innovation methods to make your products better, while maintaining the core values and customers.

3 questions innovation texts should answer


Since the arrival of internet, brands have focused on making content cool and neglecting to promote innovation. Cool content had a bigger chance of becoming viral and would get much more superficial statistics like views and likes. In the mean time content which explains innovation was underestimated and explaining innovation became a lost art.

Today innovation is becoming more competitive than ever and brands that explain it well win. Here are 3 questions each innovation text should try to answer:

1) Are we promoting a product? If not then how is the innovation delivered to the end user? Is this a project, a process, experience?

2) Who is the end user? Forget the retailers, partners, distributors, but understand and focus on the end user.

3) How is this improving the experience of the final user? What is new and better compared to alternatives?

The more honest and clear the answers are, the more powerful the text will be.

Customer conversation is a strategic resource

customer conversation

Today a typical value chain has many layers between products designers and customers who use the products. These are distributors, retailers, marketers, sales, and many other managers. This results in product designers who design safety products but never or rarely speak to people who actually need to be safe, food designers who make food perfect for supermarkets but unhealthy for consumers, entertainment companies which bet their investments on few people instead of just talking to the audience.

Managers know this problem but were not able to solve it for decades. There were many attempts such as complaint boxes, focus groups, market research methods, polls, and social media and big data. But if we ask a product designer how much contact they had with a customer they will say none or too little.

This is a substantial business risk. Access to customers is a valuable resource and a competitive advantage. Customers can not talk to many companies at once, their attention is limited, and the first company that starts a conversation with them will have a substantial advantage.

Customer conversation is openness – ability of a company to engage customers and stakeholders in an open conversation. Purpose of openness is always to innovate because, simply, this is what customers and stakeholders want. Innovation is the main goal of the company and the main value customers want – they want new things that are better than old things. and our services are focused on developing customer conversation as a strategic resource making our clients more competitive. To start a conversation with your customers contact Andrea Toniolo at

Our first decade of innovation

decade of innovation

As a team we started in the summer of 2011. In one way or the other we have always focused on innovation. We helped customers, users, clients, and partners to adopt, create, market, and sell innovation. From the start our method was pragmatic as much as possible – innovation is about convincing people to buy, not about prototypes in the garage.

Since then we helped individuals, investors, microbusinesses, small businesses, medium businesses, large and multinational companies, and various organizations to innovate and spread innovation in Europe, North America, Asia, and Africa.

We helped clients define winning values, we made complex technologies more understandable, we trained sales in how to focus on and explain innovation, we designed products, we organized product launches, we built, trained, and managed engineering teams, and more.

We worked with wine and gelato brands, helped many companies improve their and sustainability of their customers, designed and developed artificial intelligence, started our own and helped other start tech startups, managed innovation funding, helped successful products transition from one market to other, improved health of tens of thousands, and the list can go on.

Our work today on and innovation consulting is a culmination of all our experience and knowledge. We are here to help clients and their customers solve problems we saw repeat over and over again – problems which when solved will improve lives for everyone.

And we are even more excited about the next several decades. Thank you for your support.

How can brands use

big fan features

In there are two types of users: innovators, anyone who can easily register, and brands, companies that purchase access to innovation features. These features, accessible only to brands, enable following activities:

A brand page which features all products, innovations, contacts, and other information about the brand. It allows anyone to contact the brand, promote it, and buy products. Benefit for brands is that they are promoting themselves and their products as innovative. It is important for them to have one place which explains all of their innovations so customers can easily learn and use it.

Brands can publish innovation posts publicly on their profiles and share them on other social media. This way they will continuously attract, stay in touch, and educate the audience. This is the same process as with other social media but focused only on innovation.

Brands can organize selected innovators – users or anyone who they invite via email – into innovation groups, and share products and opportunities only with them. This allows them to easily collect feedback from the group members, and work with them closely and continuously with them on design and innovation.

Opportunities are projects which offer rewards to innovators. They can be competitions, open calls, partnership and job offers – an opportunity for another company or an innovator to cooperate with the brand. They are a great tool for brand awareness, partnership, recruitment, and are our alternative to advertising.

Above features create new ways of communication for brands to improve their innovation, learn more about the customers, enrich customer relationships, and build brand awareness. They offer a refreshing alternative to established channels such as newsletters and social media.

To use brand features contact Andrea Toniolo at

Now you can promote your webinars and events as innovations


We consider marketing and sales an important part of innovation. If products and services are not placed on the market and are not sold, then there is no innovation. With digitalization the quantity, quality, and relevance of live events has increased drastically. All social media feature live events and there are numerous platforms for webinars and online meetings. We recognize that these events are an important part of innovation and we want to support them.

From today when adding an innovation on you will also be offered a new innovation type: Event. You can promote your or any innovation related events using this innovation type. Add the event link in the “Insert link or Youtube video” field or in the “rich text long description”. You can promote future events or publish news on past events.

We hope that this improvement further accelerates innovation rate, reach, sharing, and education.

If you have questions please contact Andrea at or me at new business cases

innovation business case

Business cases are new process or projects in a company. At we are always working with clients and partners on creating new business cases which were not previously possible. Here are some examples:

Collecting feedback from end users of your products
This seems simple but in most cases getting feedback from final users of products is blocked by levels of management and retailers. Having a direct line to users is highly valuable.

Offering feedback to suppliers
This is the reverse version of collecting feedback from end users. Allowing direct feedback flow from your team to the supplier will be beneficial for your company and theirs. Although this innovation cooperation is always present, it is not systematic and neglected.

Discovering new uses of products
WD-40 is a product with 2000 uses with new ones being added constantly. New uses of products extend the product life and increase its competitiveness. Best way to discover them is by listening to customers.

Sharing new uses of products with clients
Once new uses are discovered and approved it is important to share them with all the other customers and partners efficiently therefore increasing the value of product for them. This is a form of innovation content which can often be obscured on non-innovation channels, and therefore requires its own channel.

Adding external (more open) innovators
Companies eventually switch from making to buy innovation and innovators. Instead of hiring staff and hoping that they come up with something new, companies look for someone who already created something new and partner with them. This is referred to as research when brands are too weak to attract, and marketing when brands are strong and attract external innovators.

Engaging innovative teams at early stages of innovation (closer to idea stage)
This is an improvement to adding external innovators. The sooner the innovators are found or attracted the easier and cheaper it is to integrate their innovation. The later they are attracted the price of their innovation is higher, and it is harder to integrate. Goal is to find a sweet spot after they lose interest for full time employment and before their projects gain traction.

If you are interested in developing new business cases in your company, email Andrea Toniolo at

Random innovation facts


There has never been so many bad products which need replacement: gasoline cars, virgin plastics, soft drinks, processed food. Our children will live in a very different world. Very soon these products will have to be replaced. Question is when and by whom, and how will this affect your company. As you are reading this trillions of EUR are invested in replacing them, and millions of people are working on it.

Selling is a necessary step of innovation. If products are not sold, innovation does not happen. But selling is not the best way to grow. Best way to grow is by co-innovating with other companies, preferably bigger ones with access to markets your company can not access. Finding innovation partners is the first step of innovation.

Many established companies are just renting their marketing & sales to innovators because today innovation is not something which can be easily managed. The best strategy is simply to be as open as possible and attract the best innovators and offer them marketing & sales power.

There is an enormous amount of innovation that is not delivering value to customers but only to shareholders. For example, how to make employees more happy at jobs which are by default not happy jobs, or how to sell the same products over and over again without innovating it. Paradoxically choosing shareholders over customers creates loss for both shareholders and customers, and still managers chose it.

Our generations have the least belief that future will be different because brands have marketed to us when we were kids, convincing us we will always drinks Coca Cola, eat at McDonalds, drive gasoline cars, wear the same clothes. All previous generations saw dramatic changes in the world around them and actively participated in those changes. Our generations are passive consumers who see the future as a slightly polished up present.

Be an innovator at

Motivation - never stop sharing your innovation ideas

wright brothers

Adding innovations is not easy. We feel under pressure when we write an innovation idea down and share it with others. Maybe it is too technical? Maybe it is not technical enough? Maybe it is ridiculous? Maybe everyone knows this already? Maybe someone will steal my idea? I have been writing for most of my life and I still avoid sharing most of the innovation ideas I have.

One thing helps me move forward – I should simply ask for what I really want to have. And if I want it, everyone else probably wants it, because we are not that different.

This kind of maybe childish simplicity is exactly how great innovation starts, and everyone should try it – even the leaders of biggest innovation teams. Sometimes the biggest challenge in innovation is to maintain this level of clarity.

Sci-fi, fiction, religion, art, science, engineering, design are all reflections of what we crave. If we are able to listen and formalize them, without worrying too much about the politics, technologies, processes, rules, then we will move forward quickly.

No matter what you do, just think of what you would want and write it down as an innovation. It will never be wrong. Add an innovation now.

End user feedback with

end user feedback

Companies have a hard time collecting end user feedback. They can conduct interviews or use social media, but this kind of feedback is not consistent, hard to document and share, and often unfocused. supports three levels of end user feedback: internally from team members, with focus groups from selected users, and publicly from everyone. Additionally an opportunity can be created to focus the feedback on a specific product, feature, or goal, and offers awards.

Whatever the channel a company chooses, it is also important to promote the feedback opportunity to the end users. This can be done with public campaigns or private invitations. The success always depends on the level of openness and company brand awareness.

On is end users can communicate whenever they want, on whatever they want, and however they want. An easy open relationship is created which is more productive than limited surveys, interviews, and other methods.

Promoting end user feedback to customers is beneficial for innovation and for enrichment of customer relationships. Companies which listen will always be more competitive. Contact us for your end user feedback project.

Why you should post on

Recently we launched It is currently available as a desktop and mobile website, and an Android app, with iOS app coming soon. allows anyone to view, rate, add, and share innovations. Innovations are posts – just like tweets or Linkedin posts – which focus only on innovation. They can be categorized as your own idea, innovative product or project, problem or a trend. An innovation can simply be a link to an article or a YouTube video and it only takes a minute to add.

But why should you post innovations?

1) It makes you think more about innovation,
2) You are showing others how much you actually know,
3) You can connect to people who care about the same innovations as you.

I suggest that you post one or more innovations per week, and spend few minutes per day browsing

It is a small investment compared to the time we spend on social media like Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, which do not offer such specific benefits.

Download the Android app Android app is now available on the Google Play store here.

This is the LITE version which means it has all the mobile website functionality but no added app features such as notifications. iOS LITE app will be launched soon as well, and later on we will launch the native apps with full app features.

Our goal is always to connect brands to innovators so better products and experiences are created. The social media part of is designed to promote brands and attract innovators to them. Innovators can be experts, customers, engineers, partners, companies, universities – any individual or group which has the know-how to help a company innovate. Making mobile apps helps this goal making more accessible to everyone.

Hope you like our app experience. If you have suggestions you can add an innovation or email me at

You get what you like


You get what you like. By interacting with online content you are telling companies what you want, and companies will make it. Digital media, especially social media, is based on this principle.

The problem is that there is so much easy-to-like entertainment content online, that other types of content stand little chance. We all need more innovation – better medicine, better transport, healthier lifestyles, solutions to climate crisis, etc. But we are given mostly likable entertainment, and the more we like it the more we get it. This trend has been accelerating for the past decade.

There are many companies that improve our lives but are not able to compete with entertainment, and they do not grow. Investors, customers, talent gravitate towards entertaining and away from innovative not-entertaining companies. Even worse is that managers decide that it is better to invest in entertainment than in innovation.

To solve this companies should invest more in innovation content which is a necessary element of innovation. And we should all interact with it more. On instead of a like we use the important button. Using it you are telling companies to innovate more.

Innovation washing

innovation washing

Innovation washing is a term for companies which are not innovative but promote themselves as such, just like green washing.

Only real innovation is open innovation – it includes many stakeholders in the process and is for many stakeholders. A lot of what is called innovation is not made for the majority of the stakeholders and is not real innovation. Figuring out a way to have less employees without adding value to customers is not an innovation. Changing the lives of millions of customers for better is an innovation.

Companies that improve their internal efficiency without providing value to customers are usually the biggest innovation washers. They promote their brands as innovative, use the word innovation excessively, but their products are stagnating. In some cases, like with BMW, VW, and Daimler, they block innovation.

If we want improvement it is important to tell the difference between real innovation and innovation washing. Companies that really innovate offer products to customers which make a real and obvious difference. tutorial - innovation types explained innovation type

When adding an innovation to you are required to choose which type your innovation is. Here is a quick explanation of the innovation types:

This is your idea what you think should be done, made, improved. Do not worry if someone else might have the same idea – this is normal, different people can have the same idea.
Example: smart phone controls for cars.

This is an update about an innovative product. It is best to focus on a single benefit of a product, like innovative breaks in a new car model. Avoid promoting a whole product unless it is a product launch.
Example: energy saving benefits of the new fridge.

Describe an innovation used in a project. You can tag a product used in the project. Just like with a product, try to focus on a single innovative benefit of the project, instead of the whole project.
Example: residential house project used latest solar panels.

Trends are changes shared by many brands and markets. Easiest way to share trends is with news related to a trend or reports on latest projects and products which define the trend.
Example: report on 3D printed houses in California.

Describing an idea is not easy, but describing a problem is – just follow your frustration. However, avoid being critical and focus on what can be improved with innovation. Problem description is not a complaint.
Example: lack of wind farms in Italy.

Try it now and add your innovation.

Companies should add an innovation channel

innovation content channel

Once a company starts making innovation content, it should have a channel dedicated to it. Here is why:

Some customers only want innovation content
They do not want to go through blogs, Instagram images, TikTok videos, thousands of Tweets, random news, to get what they want. It should be easy for them to access information about your innovation and products.

All customers want diverse content
No one likes to eat the same food or wear the same clothes every day. Customers need a place where they can easily experience a different side of the company – the innovation side. This will enrich their experience and understanding of the company, and improve loyalty.

Adding one more channel is easy
Companies already use many content channels such as newsletters, websites, Facebook, LinkedIn, fairs & events, TV, direct marketing, etc. There can be hundreds of them each with different message defined by the channel technology and audience. Adding a new channel is a standard procedure.

Innovation channel ROI is great
Innovation channel, especially if digital, costs much less than most channels because communicating innovation is easier. Also companies can move their audience from other channels to it easily without investing much in advertising.

Email me to open your company innovation channel at

Innovation content defined

innovation content

Innovation content is content which promotes a tangible positive change. While everyone will agree that a flying car is an innovation because everyone would want one, many innovations are not accepted by the majority because they are made for few customers. Innovations should be accepted as their customers see them, not how they appear to the general public.

Innovation content are highly competitive – the more companies produce it the faster they will grow. At least a quarter of content should be dedicated to innovation.


In the below video IBM is promoting the idea of their Hybrid cloud. Customers are CIOs who manage multiple clouds. The short video is not enough for technicalities but the promise of the innovation and benefit is clear and obvious.

Another example is Nino Shurter demonstrating the new Scott Ransom e-bike. Nino mentions key numbers which show innovative progress but the main innovation is the concept of a downhill e-bike ridden by a cross-country rider in a very dynamic way. This is a big change for mountain bikers and venue owners.

On the other hand next Coca Cola video which extensively uses the word innovation and other buzzwords does not actually promise any tangible change and therefore is not innovation content.

Unfortunately, the more the word innovation is used in content, the less it actually is innovation content. Which makes me wonder about this article :)

How should sales people promote innovation on social media


Sales people represent their brands and they are brands themselves. It is expected of them to publish content which defines them as experts and attracts leads. Social media, personal blogs, personal newsletters are straightforward tools for sales people to share the content, but it is often not clear which content to share.

Wrong content can get a lot of reactions but will position the brand in the wrong way. Social media metrics like visits and engagements do not guarantee sales or even brand recognition. For growth content should focus on the most competitive company activity – innovation. Sales people should clearly promote innovation which grows revenue and long term brand loyalty.

Here are few tips on how sales people should promote innovation on social media:

Do not be shy
Sales people must understand and believe in their company innovation. Belief in innovation and passion to share it are not arrogance, but confidence.

Give it space
At least a quarter of content should be dedicated to innovation, products, features, and values they deliver. The remaining content can be entertaining, destressing, news, support for others, etc.

Use the correct words
Use the words innovation, research, design, improvement, value. Also use technical terms related to the innovation, product, and industry.

Own it
Clearly state that this is an innovation by your company. Examples: “our innovation”, “our design”, “we designed it”. Without clarity that your company or you did this, the ownership will not be clear.

Social media for innovation

social media icons

Innovation is one of the most important aspects of society. It improves health, well being, safety, and comfort for everyone. Innovation is a result of collaboration between many stakeholders, but companies are the ones that make innovation available globally as a practical product that sells.

However, social media today does not favor innovation. For example, Instagram is becoming a dominant news source while it is designed to favor personal photos and short videos. This results in innovation adoption slowing down and lost opportunities. There are numerous companies with innovative solutions which could not break through. Especially startups and SMBs. This is a great loss for the market and society.

We want to reverse this trend. There are too many companies that create amazing innovations, yet they produce content which does not promote them. The belief that innovation should be hidden and that customers only want fun is wrong. We believe customers are smart and want to participate in innovation. Now it is up to companies to communicate that, and to engage customer in innovation.

Why I made

nikola tosic

Building something like is one in a life time opportunity. It is one of those “build it and they will come” projects that test vision and motivation. I am very lucky and happy to have the opportunity to do it, and clients and a team who share my vision:

Everyone should learn more about innovation
Content creation and consumption have been exponentially increasing for decades. But the quality is not. I want to offer a higher quality content – content about innovation. Innovation is what moves us forward. It is not politics, gossip, and entertainment, but innovation that improves our lives. The more everyone knows about innovation the smarter and better off we will all be. I want to build a social media where content, data, and algorithms serve only one purpose – increase innovation.

Companies should talk more about innovation
Companies got used to sharing low quality content, hacking poorly designed recommendation algorithms, and paying for simple visibility. Companies are actually very smart but they started to pretend they are stupid. Companies create innovations which improve our lives. This has stopped being visible to us. We are living in a time of the biggest disconnect between what companies actually do and how we see them. I want to help companies to again start talking about what they actually do – innovate.

Connecting different people will create more innovation
The more different people talk, the more innovation is created. Unfortunately, finding different people with interest and time to talk about innovation is not an easy job. The biggest block to innovation is being too busy to innovate and I want to solve this. It should be as easily as possible to find people and companies outside our usual circles with whom we can start innovating.

I hope that you join us.

Webinar with Dainese, Elevator Hub, and

Together with Elevator Hub we have organized an open door webinar which explores three different aspects of innovations:

Global brand product innovation – presented by Tommaso Guseo, Dainese

Innovation hub network concept – presented by Matteo Pozzi, Elevator Hub

Global innovation network – presented by Andrea Toniolo,

This webinar will have the form of an open discussion – anyone can ask questions and discuss with the Tommaso, Matteo, and Andrea. If you want to stir up your ideas about innovation, this is a webinar for you.

It will be held on 17:00 CET Wednesday 9 June. Language is Italian.


More about the webinar.

5 biggest trends that will change every company

Businesses will be required to operate in a fully sustainable way. This includes how they produce, use energy, transport, their suppliers, and – most importantly – their products.

Most of the businesses stopped digitalization after they made websites, social media profiles, and started using CRM. However, digital gap between market leaders and others is even greater now then before. Biggest digitalization projects are customer portals and software which supports products.

Artificial intelligence is improving current and creating new automation opportunities. While its popularity in news has dropped lately, it is actually growing in importance. More and more human tasks are automated leaving more time for us to be creative.

Decentralization is a trend which tries to include as many stakeholders as possible by creating self governing platforms. Blockchain is one of the most popular decentralization technologies which is challenging finance.

Open source, crowdsourcing, open innovation, are all openness trends which have been building up for decades. Openness is a trend which requires companies to be more open to customer needs and to allow more stakeholders to participate.

These trends adhere to these rules:
– Companies that do not adopt them will not survive,
– Integrating them requires deep understanding,
– Adopting to them requires serious consistent long term investment.

Open innovation network defined

open innovation network

Open innovation should be understood as networked innovation. It engages more innovators within and outside the company which results in innovation of higher complexity and competitiveness. For competitors to compete it is not enough to just copy the product, but they must also copy the innovation network, which is impossible.

Such networks should be built with internal departments, external experts, and different companies which can offer new skills, technologies, expertise, points of view. The more diverse yet relevant the innovators are, the more resilient and competitive the innovation will be.

As global competition is increasing it is imperative for companies to increase innovation complexity making them more resilient and competitive. Companies that continue with closed innovation will be easily copied, which means they will be investing in their competitors’ growth, not their own.

Today any single product can be copied, but a customer experience built by an open innovation network is impossible to copy.

First find the best customer for your innovation

open innovation

Innovation starts with a problem. Solving a problem requires deep understanding of customers who experience it. That can happen only in two cases: you are the customers or you understand customers well.

Customers you connect with and understand will define your innovation.

In reality companies stop talking with new customers and focus on legacy customers and internal stakeholders – distributors, sales, engineers, owners. But without the contact with new customers companies can not make highly competitive innovation.

Open innovation opens up companies to new customers with problems which are more profitable to solve. It motivates the company to talk to new people which results in new products, more competitive innovation, and new revenues.

Before finding a problem, understand the type of customer you want to help. Working only for legacy customers or internal stakeholders will result in less competitive innovation.

Happy World Creativity and Innovation Day - 21 April

world creativity and innovation day

World Creativity and Innovation Day is a great opportunity to remind ourselves that creativity and innovation are not one-to-many activity but a many-to-many cooperation. Only reason that we had one-to-many approach is because technology was not developed. Now that we have the web, smart phones, and all the gadgets we are returning to what true creativity and innovation are – many-to-many cooperation.

Enjoy the World Creativity and Innovation Day!

PS Being cooperative and open is also good for business :)