Offer a highly desirable product or service at a fair price and you’ll net yourself a good amount of customers with a decent amount of repeat business… Right? Well, maybe not.
The business world has never been so competitive. With such a wide variety of suppliers and a plethora of easily accessible information—think social media, Trust Pilot, Good Housekeeping—customers have more control than ever over who they buy from and how they buy it. Following on from my last post on customer centricity, let’s take a further look at how to delve into the mind of a customer.
The best products and services are never sold—they’re bought!
To compete, you’ll need to think from the outside in. Instead of thinking product first, take a look at your business from your customer’s perspective. Honing in on why customers buy your products or services will help you select the solutions that solve their problems, address their needs, and fulfil their desires.
To gain more insight into why your customers buy your products or services, start by asking the following:
- What do you offer? How much of it do you sell and what times of the year do you sell the most?
- What does your product or service do for your customers? How do they use it and how does it make them feel?
- How is your product or service better than what your competitors are offering?
- What does it cost and what are your pricing models?
Using these insights can help steer your business in the right direction. For example, if some of your products are selling better than others, and the demand seems to be ever increasing, you might want to shift your strategy to focus more on promoting them. Alternatively, you might need to switch your efforts up if you identify a service that your customers really need… but they’re not aware you offer it, let alone that it could fix their problems!
From there you’ll be able to acknowledge all the touchpoints a customer might make, whether directly or indirectly connected to your business, in order to develop effective marketing communication strategies.
Customers usually don’t buy what you think they buy
Why would a customer pay £2 for a loaf of bread at a local bakery over 50p in a supermarket? Or why would a business receive three different costs from service providers, offering the same service and choose the most expensive solution? Because customers don’t buy your products or services as you think they do; they buy your promise, the customer experience, the value you offer and the satisfaction that they believe your offering will deliver.
There are many components that make up a customer’s mind when it comes to evaluating the value of your offering—From the price, the quality, and the features, to convenience, reliability and support. Striking a balance between these elements is key. If your product’s quality and features are average, then the value might come from the affordable price tag. But if you place a premium on your promise, the reliability, and quality of the offering, the value of paying more will become clear.
Don’t underestimate the power of examining your product or service from your customers view point. Customers may simply choose to buy from you over your competitor based on how you make them feel. Keep your focus on your customers on what they value not just today, but tomorrow.