3 Ways To Convert Customers Into Innovators

Posted by Joy Levin - February 21, 2012 - Web Analytics - 2 Comments

As noted in a Fast Company article, innovation starts with listening to your customers.  They can tell you what they need, why they need it, what problems it will solve for them and how it will make them feel.

You can learn how to harness customer insights into discovering new products services, or changes to those which already exist, that create a sustainable competitive advantage for your brand. It all starts with asking the right questions, using best practices in market research, to address customer needs:

  • Watch your customers interact with your brand.  You’ll learn about how they use it, any difficulties they have with it, and other products which may address problems they have that they haven’t yet found a solution for.
  • Learn how they make the purchase decision.  Is it alone, or with others?  Who influences their decisions?  What is the purchase experience like for them, and how can you make it better or easier?
  • Talk to non-customers – what are the barriers to purchasing your product?  How can these barriers be overcome? Does the competition currently solving their problem in a way that you don’t?

Most importantly, understand that customers are NOT looking for product features.  They ARE looking for product benefits.  You can learn what these benefits are, and how they can be uniquely positioned, if you ask the question and really listen to the answers.

2 comments

  • Joy, I could not agree more. With regard to the second bullet and the purchase decision, when we are asking potential buyers about their purchasing decision, we also ask about their “watering holes” – where they would go for information to solve this particular problem. (trade shows, user groups, industry associations, publications, website, etc. If they say they google, we ask them for keywords they would use). Great data to make the go to market and campaign planning more efficient and effective! Thanks for the post. Sue

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