A top-notch creative, advertising and marketing agency focused on tourism and hospitality
Aries.Creative is a leading creative, advertising and marketing agency in Northern Italy, right on the border with Switzerland and Austria and nested within the Alps (Dolomites) famously known for summer and winter tourism and therefore for the related business. In this context Aries.Creative was founded and after 26 years created a quite strong experience in serving clients in that sector.
While being a top agency, the founder and CEO was feeling that they were losing competitive advantages compared to the market and that their position could be endangered.
FFA supported Aries.Creative in analyzing their competitive position on the market, and proposed to implement a corporate innovation process that could enable the company in the mid- and long-term to identify and develop new products and services, and collaborate with external parties, in order to obtain a new competitive edge. With a highly iterative approach and some matching of corporate innovation strategy best practices with the particularities (and related problem sets) of the local market, FFA identified some interesting solutions.
“FFA has given us a fresh view on opportunities that we can pursue, in order to position ourselves uniquely on the market, providing plenty of valuable innovation capability options“Anna Dallemulle | CEO | Aries.Creative
PROBLEMS & CHALLENGES
Agency offering becoming a commodity: Aries.creative although supported by over 25 years of experience in providing prime products and services to their clients has started to see competition from new companies in the same sector (but offering more extensive products and services, serving more elements in the tourism and hospitality marketing value chain) and from extended competition (digital marketing agencies).
Employees in tech hard to find: Aries.creative started struggling in finding employees in tech (especially front- and backend developers), because the market is competitive and much tech talent is starting their own products and service on the market.
ACTIONS & SERVICES
1. Corporate Innovation Workshop: We analyzed the market (both macroeconomically speaking), but also on the local level and identified the main core positioning problems and tried to map these out to identify holes, problems and therefore opportunities in each of these. Additionally we identified a system, with which the client could self-manage the potential improvements of their competitive positioning with corporate innovation solutions.
2. Reiterative Innovation Process Design: We designed the reiterative processes needed to develop and deploy the innovation systems within Aries.creative, initially with our support and in the mid-/long-term autonomously. The whole process design and budget elaboration was designed also to qualify for a process innovation grant provided by the region for highly impacting internal innovation solutions.
IMPACT & OUTCOME
Open innovation projects and activities, if implemented correctly and with a clear strategy in mind, can result in extremely high ROI, as well as for all the lean innovation solutions and competitive positioning solutions that we identified.
The main outputs of the projects were:
- Concepts around open innovation (and how to fuel the company’s innovation capabilities from outside, without increasing CAPEX or long-term OPEX significantly), e.g. running hackathons / startup weekends for specific problem sets
- Opportunities in Corporate venturing, trying to cooperate with small, early stage startups in the sector and building strategic product/content partnerships
- Creating and providing innovation workshops for and with their hospitality clients, and identify new solutions for them (and by doing this becoming more a strategy / innovation consulting firm with product capabilities)