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15 Second Workday

What is ChatGPT?

If you haven’t heard about it yet, ChatGPT is an AI-powered program created by OpenAI. It uses advanced machine learning techniques to generate human-like responses to text inputs, allowing people to have conversations with it. Essentially, it’s a computer program that can understand and generate text in a way that resembles human language. Open AI has also developed a companion model called DALL·E that generates images from textual descriptions.  Both programs are in beta testing mode and are free to use for those who create an account at  OpenAI’s programs are examples of number of AI programs popping up around the internet currently.

ChatGPT for Innovation

In principle, innovation professionals can leverage ChatGPT in several ways, including:

  • Marketing – Creating engaging and informative content for customers, such as blog posts, social media updates, ad copy and newsletters.  The system will even write this content in the lingo of your key demographic if requested.
  • Research and development: Testing hypotheses, performing data analysis, writing and editing reports, and assisting innovation professionals in driving research and development efforts more efficiently and effectively.
  • Prototyping and user testing: Creating new product and service ideas and integrating into user testing environments to gather feedback from real users.
  • Concept validation: Validating new concepts and ideas by generating text-based prototypes and simulations, allowing innovation professionals to quickly assess viability and identify areas for improvement.
  • Customer or consumer insights: Analyzing large amounts of customer data and generating insights, helping innovation professionals understand customer needs, behaviors, and preferences better.

These are just a few of the ways innovation professionals can use ChatGPT for driving innovation in a variety of industries.

Example:  New Cat Food Concepts

In prep for writing this blog post, I gave ChatGPT a general prompt based my recent adoption of a kitten:  Generate 10 cat food concepts.  In five seconds, it generated:

  • Grain-Free Gourmet: A premium cat food line featuring high-quality, grain-free ingredients, such as wild-caught fish, cage-free poultry, and grass-fed beef.
  • Hairball Control: A specialized cat food line designed to help reduce hairballs in cats, with added fiber and enzymes to aid digestion.
  • Senior Health: A cat food line tailored to meet the unique nutritional needs of older cats, with added vitamins and minerals to support joint health and cognitive function.
  • Limited Ingredient: A cat food line made with a limited number of high-quality ingredients, ideal for cats with food sensitivities or allergies.
  • Weight Management: A cat food line designed to help cats maintain a healthy weight, with a balanced blend of protein, fiber, and fat to support lean muscle mass and reduce fat storage.
  • Novel Protein: A cat food line featuring novel protein sources, such as venison, rabbit, or kangaroo, to provide cats with a unique flavor experience while minimizing the risk of food sensitivities.
  • Farm-to-Table: A cat food line made with locally sourced, farm-fresh ingredients, such as organic chicken, pasture-raised lamb, and seasonal fruits and vegetables.
  • Digestive Health: A cat food line formulated with probiotics and prebiotics to promote healthy digestion and reduce gastrointestinal issues in cats.
  • Indoor Cat: A cat food line designed for cats who primarily live indoors, with added fiber to help prevent hairballs and reduce litter box odors.
  • Kitten Development: A cat food line formulated to meet the unique nutritional needs of growing kittens, with added protein, calcium, and DHA to support healthy bone and brain development.

Not bad, but kind of ho-hum.  Some of these concepts can be found in abundance in the market.

I then asked, “generate some unique cat food concepts – ones you wouldn’t expect” and here are some of the options it returned:

  • Insect-Infused: A cat food line that incorporates insect protein, such as crickets or mealworms, as a sustainable and nutrient-dense alternative to traditional protein sources.
  • Superfood Fusion: A cat food line that blends high-quality protein sources, such as salmon or chicken, with superfoods like kale, chia seeds, and blueberries, to provide cats with a nutrient-packed meal.
  • Raw Food: A cat food line featuring raw, minimally processed ingredients, such as raw chicken or beef, to provide cats with a more natural and biologically appropriate diet.
  • Fusion Cuisine: A cat food line that blends traditional recipes from around the world, such as Japanese-style tuna with wasabi, or Indian-style chicken curry, to give cats a unique and flavorful dining experience.
  • Smoothie for Cats: A cat food line that incorporates fresh fruits and vegetables into a smoothie-style meal, providing cats with a nutritious and hydrating option.
  • Fish & Cheese Combo: A cat food line that combines the classic flavors of fish and cheese, with options like salmon and cream cheese or tuna and cheddar.
  • Spice it Up: A cat food line that adds spice blends, such as turmeric or ginger, to cat food to provide health benefits and add flavor.
  • Forest Feast: A cat food line featuring wild game, such as venison or wild boar, to provide a unique and flavorful meal for cats.
  • Dessert for Cats: A cat food line that offers sweet treats, such as apple pie or pumpkin spice, for cats who have a sweet tooth.
  • Artisanal Cuisine: A cat food line that features handcrafted recipes made in small batches using locally sourced and organic ingredients, similar to the artisanal food trend in human food.

Better.  Some of these – Raw Food – may not be viable options for mass market but there are some interesting concepts in the list which would be new to the market. For any one of them, one could prompt the program to create a full concept for testing with consumers, ad copy or a script for a TikTok video targeted for cat owners.

Closing Thoughts

It wasn’t long ago that new product innovation would involve a full day of workshops to come up with product concepts for testing. Currently, ChatGPT’s output is basic and needs to be reviewed carefully by an experienced, domain-specific user.  (And of course, always check with your company’s data use and security policies to ensure compliance.) Nevertheless, as is the nature of AI, the program will become better quickly. Applied carefully and in the right way, AI has the potential of significantly reducing the time it takes for many routine innovation tasks.


  • Gail Martino

    Gail Martino, Ph.D is a thought leader and global innovation leader in the fast-moving consumer goods industry, having worked with billion-dollar brands at Unilever and previously at Gillette. With a background spanning both corporate and academic roles, Gail has a proven track record in developing and executing highly effective innovation ecosystems, driving value through strategic partnerships and internal product development. Notably, she has been a valued member of the advisory board for the Front End of Innovation conference since 2015.


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