Innovation ideas for the bike helmet market


Even when the helmet market gets tough, keep innovating 

Investing in innovation is a proactive approach to future-proofing your business.

By continually seeking to embrace new ideas, technologies, and trends, you can prepare for future opportunities, stay agile and ensure long-term company sustainability.

Overall, the significance of R&D and technological advancements in bicycle helmets are instrumental in improving safety, injury prevention, comfort, performance, and user experience.

Also, continually pushing the boundaries of design and innovation, companies contribute to the evolution of helmets to ensure that cyclists have access to the best possible protection while enjoying their rides.

So, what should bike helmet manufacturers keep in mind for their innovation efforts?

Generate helmet brand loyalty where there isn’t any

With the glut of helmets and overstocking, we know manufacturers are desperately attempting to avoid free-for-all discounting on bike accessories.

Some manufacturers have become retailers to control their supply. The goal is to avoid price wars where everyone loses.

Innovation that directly addresses customer needs and pain points enhances customer satisfaction. 

Companies can build strong customer relationships and foster loyalty by delivering innovative products or services that exceed customer expectations.

Satisfied and loyal customers contribute to revenue growth and act as brand advocates, attracting new customers through positive word-of-mouth.

Just because it is new for your brand, it doesn’t count as an innovative helmet

Don't go with what already exists. Common existing new trends include

  • Integrated Technology Systems enhance functionality and safety. Built-in LED lights to improve visibility, integrated camera mounts, and Bluetooth connectivity for audio.
  • Sustainable, eco-friendly recycled or bio-based materials.
  • Smart Helmet Features include built-in sensors to detect impacts or falls, emergency contact systems that notify predefined contacts in case of an accident, and helmet-mounted displays that provide real-time information to the rider.
  • Aerodynamic Designs reduce drag and enhance performance. Sleek profiles and optimized vent placement minimize air resistance.
  • Customizations with adjustable fit systems, and removable or interchangeable padding. Various color choices or graphics personalize a helmet's appearance.

These new features are great, but what do ALL consumers really want in a bike helmet, and where can your brand make a difference?

Focus on Fit, Ventilation, and Style when innovating your bike helmet

Sometimes, Tour De France competitors take screwdrivers with them to chisel out the interior of their helmets. They lessen the weight and try to achieve a better fit - but they can jeopardize safety in the process.

Even regular road bike consumers can obsess over a 20-gram difference in a bike helmet. 

But other essential features will delight your customers more than weight, LED lights, or Bluetooth.

Innovate now for the perfect bike helmet fit

If the best part of your consumers' ride is the moment they take off their helmets, you urgently need a solution to save your brand reputation.

One of our Clovis Henzen Consulting clients traveled to scan more than one thousand heads locally to gather data on a good fit range for their new Asia market. Meanwhile, bike helmets in one EU country tend to be round, and in another country more oval-shaped.

The manufacturer that can develop a customized fit - and produce it on a mass scale - will win the helmet innovation game.

Right now, helmet customization is limited to:

  • Adjustable helmet Retention straps or rear dials for a secure and comfortable fit.
  • Multiple size options for each helmet shell, for a more precise fit across a range of head sizes.
  • Interchangeable or adjustable Fit Pads allow riders to fine-tune their helmets to fit their specific head shape.

Nevertheless, with technology and 3D printing, we are on the brink of the perfect personalized helmet fit. Storing skull data points helps with automatic future helmet replacements, avoiding excess inventory, and immediate product delivery (which reduces the carbon footprint).

Too much (or not enough) bike helmet ventilation 

Are you the brand that gives your customers headaches from too much ventilation - or the flu from freezing sweaty scalps in the dead of winter?

What about ventilation compromising aerodynamics? For serious competitors, this is a great question. For daily training and avid riders, ventilation outweighs gaining a few milliseconds. 

Ventilation innovations to date fall into categories:

  • Aero Ventilation optimizes the ventilation channels, allowing for better airflow.
  • Integrated Ventilation includes larger vents, channels, and ports to enhance airflow and cooling.
  • Active Ventilation that opens or closes depending on the rider's preference or weather conditions.

Spend some creative time thinking about where your brand can innovate with ventilation feature.

Elevate Bike Helmet Innovations with Cultural Influence and Creative Thinking

"Style is always in fashion" - Wilma Askinas

Accompany innovations in bike helmet fit and ventilation with style and out-of-the-box thinking.

Cultural, social, economic, and individual elements influence the acceptance of a new style. 

If you need help trying to push through your style, consider using:

  • Influencers. When Influencers adopt and showcase a new style, it can gain attention and influence fashion.
  • Fashion Media amplifies visibility and acceptance within the fashion industry and among consumers.
  • Cultural shifts, social movements, and changing attitudes influence what is considered fashionable. Health and safety are currently top-of-mind with consumers.
  • Renowned designers or fashion houses that incorporate a new style into their collections. Their fashion weeks and marketing campaigns lend credibility and desirability to a style.
  • Zeitgeist. By challenging conventional norms it generates interest and becomes recognized as fashion.
  • Social dynamics and peer influence are crucial in the acceptance of new styles. When cyclists see their peers receiving positive feedback, it creates validation and adoption

Creativity and timing can also contribute to the market accepting your new helmet style.

Invest in innovative helmet technologies and ideas for a competitive advantage 

With the helmet market size diminishing, the battle to attract investors or funding for innovation is crucial. 

If your bicycle accessory company needs help with a fresh innovation idea to diversify and expand your current helmet market position, Clovis Henzen Consulting can help. Let’s examine the different angles of your idea to guarantee a successful implementation.

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