PLMA Show Coverage: Innovate to Win, Not Just to be Clever, Google Maven Says

November 14, 2011
/ Print / Reprints /
/ Text Size+

Successful businesses don’t innovate merely for the sake of innovation; rather they innovate to win at what they do, Douglas Merrill, the former chief information officer at online search giant Google, told attendees at the Private Label Manufacturers Association’s Salute to Excellence breakfast Monday morning.


Keys to finding innovations that help you win are observing what customers do rather than what they say as well as hiring a diverse employee base that’s not afraid to try, and fail, at new endeavors, he said.


Eastman Kodak was a company that was innovative, in that it held scores of patents, but it never put that innovation into business practice, preferring to continue thinking of itself as a film company as digital photography made film obsolete, Merrill noted. Retailers should be careful not to follow the same corporate mindset that can’t think of a business in terms of the changing world around it.


Real world retailers should be using online methods to connect with customers as well, he said, giving the example of how Domino’s now takes two-thirds of its pizza orders online, helping it cut staffing costs in stores and have those savings flow to its bottom line.

Did you enjoy this article? Click here to subscribe to Private Label Buyer.

You must login or register in order to post a comment.



Image Galleries

November 2014 New Food Products

This month's new food products are Flours, crepes, lollipops, several candy items, pancakes, dip, fish, raisins, pizza, almond milk, peanut butter, and a breakfast bowl.


Coming with a clear, comprehensive plan was the key to success for Longo Brothers Fruit Markets when the grocer decided to roll out a two-tier private label strategy, Jenny Longo and Robert Koss tell PLBuyer editor Chris Freeman in this podcast.

More Podcasts

Private Label Buyer Magazine

PLB November 2014 cover

November 2014

The November 2014 issue of Private Label Buyer - its last issue - includes articles about the retailer as manufacturer and OTC/healthcare items, as well as category insights on pizza and household goods. Check it out today!

Table Of Contents Subscribe

Private Label Segments

Which segment of private label will see the biggest growth over the next year?
View Results Poll Archive

Clear Seas Research

Clear Seas ResearchWith access to over one million professionals and more than 60 industry-specific publications,Clear Seas Research offers relevant insights from those who know your industry best. Let us customize a market research solution that exceeds your marketing goals.


facebook_40px twitter_40px  youtube_40pxlinkedin_40pxgoogle+ icon 40px

PLB Marketplace