Paul Dunay at Buzz Marketing writes a post here pointing to a research paper by Andrew Razeghi from the Kellogg School of Management on Innovating Through Recession.
Andrew makes 7 great points in this paper but I love the first one where he states:
And here is the quote I love the most in that section:
I think it is hard for companies to stay focused on customers when they have their own economic problems to deal with. During tough economic times, a focus on innovation is more important than ever. Innovation thrives on constraints. What is a recession other than a time of great constraint?
Customers are trying to do more with less. Enterprises are looking for ways to decrease their cost of sales, shorten their sales cycles, reduce costs associated with business travel, decrease their need for physical real estate, improve their time to market, reach more customers while spending less – the list goes on and on. What a perfect time for great product managers and marketers to take a step back and listen to their customers.