How to Use ChatGPT to Unlock New Levels of Innovation

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ChatGPT is ubiquitous, but we’re only scratching the surface of the potential of such generative artificial intelligence (AI). There are incredibly exciting opportunities just beneath the surface for his role in innovation and research and development (R&D). Determined to find the answer, our innovation team dug deeper.

If you haven’t started experimenting or implementing the generative language model developed by OpenAI in your business processes, then at least you’ve heard of ChatGPT. The chatbot has garnered a lot of attention in the AI ​​community and beyond due to its human-like and conversational skills – the service reached 100 million users in less than two months.

While the true threat or promise of generative AI continues to be debated, it is more than certain that companies can unlock real value for innovation by relying on the application’s advanced language processing capabilities. New levels of consumer insights, more efficient processes and faster ways of working lie just beneath the surface. To test the tool, we used ChatGPT to simulate how we might drive new product development.

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1. The idea generation process: high-quality input leads to high-quality output

The answer you are looking for depends on how you phrase the question. Not as easy as it sounds! ChatGPT uses a massive amount of data from around the web (over 570 GB of data – around 300 billion words) to quickly answer user questions. And the specific wording, wording, and context of the question significantly affects the answer.

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Let’s say you’re looking for the next big innovation in laundry for a consumer products company. According to a report by Grand View Research, you already know that the global laundry care products market is projected to grow at a CAGR of 4.9% from 2021 to 2028 (ChatGPT could tell you that too if you didn’t know). You might simply ask, “What will the next disruptive laundry product be?” ChatGPT then lists some potential directions for disruptive laundry products, such as sustainable laundry solutions, smart laundry appliances, multifunctional products, etc. The answer is interesting and might help confirm some initial thoughts, but probably nothing you didn’t already know.

But what if you tried a more creative angle like “What do people love about laundry?”. This question is not that intuitive. But the insights from ChatGPT are potentially much more interesting and lead you to build a deeper understanding of consumer behavior and emotions to anchor the next big innovation or product design.

Photo credit: Francesco Fazio |

Questions that lead to more questions lead to potential insights. This is the true power of a tool like ChatGPT. But it all starts with the question, and it pays to think carefully about what you want to know and how you phrase the question.

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2. The discovery process: less time researching and more time thinking

All innovations are based on discovery, from contextual (market research, trend analysis) to behavioral (ethnographic immersion). It’s important, but incredibly time-consuming.

ChatGPT can do in seconds what traditional research can take hours and days – quickly gathering information on a variety of topics, sorting the data and providing an overview of what’s important and what’s not. Let’s say you’ve thought of four possible ideas for new laundry detergent products and now you want to rate their relative desirability. You can ask ChatGPT to rank them based on their potential appeal to customers, and go even further by asking ChatGPT to think about the types of customers these ideas would most appeal to.

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Photo credit: Francesco Fazio |

Just as the internet has rendered encyclopedias obsolete, ChatGPT is turning traditional research on its head. In seconds, ChatGPT was able to rank new product ideas and provide a viewpoint of desirability by customer segment. This shortens the initial, more time-consuming research and allows you to dig deeper into more specific areas of interest and shift your focus to higher-level tasks.

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3. Preparing for market entry: Accelerating the creative process

Enterprises are already beginning to use generative AI to handle most basic and transactional customer interactions. But ChatGPT can also embark on the more creative process. Do you want to create a brainstorming text for a marketing campaign? Or design the mission statement of your new company? Or create a starter list of KPIs for your growing sales team? ChatGPT can get you started quickly.

Suppose you have developed a new stain removal product and are ready to launch it. With ChatGPT, you can quickly come up with potential marketing campaign concepts and help draft copywriting. Your creative team now has a starting point to further evaluate and refine. Let’s say your team aligns with a campaign that focuses on eco-friendliness, ease of use, and stain removal. You can go one step further and ask ChatGPT to create compelling social media posts. Here’s what you would get:

Photo credit: Francesco Fazio |

Not bad, right? Finding ways to implement Generative AI in tasks like these can help significantly accelerate and improve your go-to-market strategy.

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Generative AI and the future of innovation

Generative AI applications not only have potential; They are already changing the rules of the game for innovation. New concept development, accelerated research and discovery, and go-to-market strategies are just some of the areas where generative AI can be leveraged.

However, it will not replace human decisions. We know that the vast dataset used by generative AI tools is content already available. In fact, the data underlying ChatGPT is only up to 2021. So not only are they somewhat outdated, but they also cannot replace true primary research.

As long as you know the data you’re working with and its strengths and limitations, the capabilities of generative AI can still be incredibly powerful. And how much benefit it can offer depends on knowing what questions to ask, where to dig deeper, and how to translate that knowledge into real action.

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