What does the customer really want?

Often companies miss the moments of disruption by focusing on improving the features of their product. The most famous reference is that the electric bulb has not been developed by improving the candle lighting. But also a GPS navigation system has not been developed by making maps easier to read. And there are houndreds of examples where market leaders are out of business. 

A good method to find out if a company is “blinded” by the features of their own product is running outside-in customer interviews. In this engagement, selected representative and diverse customers (or prospects) are interviewed in a more qualitative and detailed manner in order to listen to the “voice of customer” (VOC) and to identify what are the “jobs to be done” rather than the features to be improved. 

Based on the approach of Clayton Christensen’s and others customer needs are defined in terms of jobs (or functions) to be done and not features of products. The famous example is that a house owner needs a picture on the wall and does not care if that is done through a powerful easy-to-use drill. Applying this approach allows companies to make their choice of which segment they want to focus on and investigate how to meet the top jobs of the target segment.

The selection of a segment and the loyalty to this selection represents the core of any strategy, as strategy is essence is about making a choice. The more explicit this choice is, and the more the entire organization understands the logic behind, the more alignment and execution power will be generated.

Consulting4Growth will engage with you in the scoping, interviewing, analyzing and prioritizing processes, so that the client can focus on setting the right aspiration, bounds and boundaries for defining the strategy. 

Depending on the complexity of the industry / product this engagement will take 6-8 weeks assuming about 8-10  customers to be interviewed in a face-to-face (or video conferencing) manner.

The nature of this work is quite strategic and shall not be overlapping with ongoing sales conversations a client may have with customers. Hence normally business owners, marketing and strategist and not sales professionals need to be engaged from the client point of view.

Interest? Please contact Consulting4Growth using the contact form.