The Secret To Thinking Like Your Customer
I’m Sure You’re Asking Yourself
“What can I do to attract more customers? I have a great product and I know it’s great,” you say, “Why don’t I have more business?” You want offer your gifts to the world while also maintaining that your gifts are about you. Brace yourself for honesty to learn the secret to thinking like your customers.
First Things First
You must let go of your ego in order to accept the hard truths about the business world, the most important one being this: your customer does not care about you. They don’t care about your underdog story, the milestones you had to cross or even the capitol you put in to make your business possible. They only care about the things you can do for them, how much they want it and what it is going to cost them.
This concept of cost goes beyond dollars and cents. Long before your customer has decided to purchase anything they have already invested their time, focus and energy on you. Time felt wasted can do irreversible damage to your business and with 400,000 consumer products being introduced every year, the best thing you can do for your business is get inside the mindset of your customer base.
Ask yourself the questions you would need answered if you were a customer or if you were proposing your business to a friend. What is the problem? What can you offer? Why do people want that product/service? Why do they want your version of that product/service? Why is this profitable?
Let’s Talk About IT: Inbound Sales
Most businesses spend their time doing traditional or “outbound” marketing. Outbound marketing tries to reach consumers through general media advertising as well as through in-person contact. This ranges from ads in commercials, magazines and on the radio, even vehicle wraps all in the effort to find customers. Inbound marketing brings your customers to you. Customers end up self-qualifying themselves and volunteer their attention when you create content they already are interested in.
How Do We Make It Work For You?
Attract: Create relevant content at the right time; when customers are looking for it. Stay informed on social media and using search engines to see what has your consumer’s attention.
Convert: Now that you’ve got content, create a conversation; give your customers a way to ask questions and openly communicate with your business and other consumers.
Close: You’ve got their attention, now gain their business. Emails and other subscriptions or notifications are a great way to win over a potential client on the fence about committing to your services. It also helps to retain the business of your regular customers because they know they can expect more great things from you.
Delight: You’ve gained their business, now keep it! Show your customers what their patronage means to you! This is where promotions and loyalty services come in handy.
For a more in depth break down of inbound marketing, we recommend reading “The Inbound Methodology” at hubspot.com. It is also important to note that a key point to inbound sales means knowing your products, your market and where your company can grow to. How would you some up your business; what’s your pitch?
What’s In A Pitch?
A great way to learn how to pitch your business is by watching the show Shark Tank in which entrepreneurs proposition business moguls in the efforts to convince them to make profitable investments in their ideas or companies. What every business needs is a “problem” worth solving. Your product should be the solution to the problem; what you have to offer. An example of this would be “I can’t find easy to use belts for my growing child” the solution would be a customizable belt for young children.
Why do people want that/your product/service?
You simply must be prepared for the mountain of “Why’s” you will get with regards to your business. People are always going to want to know why you are doing what you are doing, why it is the price it’s been given and more importantly why they can’t go to competitor or better yet, go without the service altogether? To make your business worthwhile to a consumer, you must have an answer that is going to not only satisfy, but entice your clientele. This requires research and time but the more knowledgeable you are about not only your product but your industry and customer base, the easier it is for others to trust your judgement and the easier it is to sell your business.
What about profits?
Bottom lines will always be what businesses come down to. If you aren’t in it to make money and grow into something exponential, then perhaps your service is more of a hobby; something fun to do with your down time. Ask yourself why you are willing to put yourself on the line and if the money is important to you. Many of the “Sharks” pull out of a deal solely based on the fact that they are not willing to invest in a business idea they will not see a return profit on, even ones they see great potential in down the road. Know your numbers; what it costs to make, brand, ship, promote, advertise and package. What your sales versus your takeaway will be. Who you would need to talk to in order to secure a patent or copyright a brand? It is best to know these things should you be planning to reach out to investors.
Remember to treat your business seriously, with the thoughts of more than just what you personally will gain. Start every business action with your customer in mind, consider them in every decision you make and you will find many doors will open to you, consumers will flock to you for your products and you will be leagues ahead of your competition. The secret to success lies in thinking like a customer! Happy Signing!