Jenny Straub is the Senior Director of Marketing and Product Development at IMAGEN Brands, and recently spoke to Trend Hunter about how she is always on the lookout for new ideas.
How does your team generate great ideas?
Our team generates great ideas in several ways; we are obsessed with trend shopping in retail stores, fashion magazines, Pinterest and websites such as Wayfair, The Grommet, Pink Olive, RH Signature and Custom Made.
What are some barriers to innovation and how do you get around them?
In our industry, it is a race to be the first out with a product so we are on a constant hunt for new ideas, analyzing ideas from every angle. We are also in total communication with our overseas vendors to keep us informed on what they see as well.
How do you identify trends, and what resources does your team use to spot trends and insights?
We identify trends in many ways. We attend many non-industry shows that include CES, Americas Mart, Housewares Show, The International Toy Fair, The Outdoor Show and Canton Fairs in Asia. In addition, we are members of CMG (Color Marketing Group) for color trends.
Do you have specific rituals for resetting to be creative?
Personally, in order for me to reset, I have to close my office door, turn on my favorite music and just concentrate on being creative. Traveling also gets my juices flowing too.
Has there ever been an instance where another industry has influenced an innovation at your company?
Absolutely! Since we are a Top 40 Supplier in Promotional Products, the Fashion and Consumer Electronic industries influence our company practically every day.
What are some examples of things you can/would like to do to create a culture of innovation?
We teach our team to pay attention to everything! Whether they are at the grocery store, playing with their children, out with friends, watching movies/commercials/YouTube videos, and everything in between.
What do you think you industry will look like in the next 5-10 years?
Our industry is changing rapidly so I believe it will look very different in the next 5-10 years with a strong emphasis on technology advancements in building relationships. There will be even more e-commerce companies than we see now.
What's the most unconventional thing you have done to get creative inspiration?
One of the most recent things we’ve done to inspire creativity is holding a Marketing Summit that promoted team building, collaboration and brain storming sessions between our Graphics, Product Development and Marketing teams. Each team member came away feeling refreshed, motivated, creative and full of Graphic and Product ideas.