How do you find and keep customers? You need to think like them. What do they want from you? Can you give them what they’re looking for? ” Think like a customer ” means the difference between a successful, growing organization and one that fizzles before you get started.
We should all be thinking about why someone should buy our product. After all, if we don’t understand what our customers need, or their concerns, how can we successfully meet those needs and concerns? Hence, we ultimately fail in selling the product or services to that customer.
Understand What Drives Your Customers to Make Contact
Being able to think like the customer enables you to:
1. See things from the customer’s perspective
2. Speak in the same language as the customer
3. Understand the customer’s motivation
4. Identify what truly is value for the customer
5. Avoid getting trapped in a price-driven conversation
6. Differentiate between a prospect and a suspect
7. Successfully sell at the right price to a targeted customer
For example, if you were diagnosed with a herniated disk in your cervical spine, how would you go about finding a qualified orthopedic surgeon to find the best treatment? Your concerns would likely involve experience, qualifications, a successful outcome as well as honest and open communication about risks for such surgery.
What would motivate you to seek treatment abroad? Is the procedure too expensive in your home state, province or country? Is there no one qualified to perform such surgery in your vicinity? If you don’t have the procedure, what could happen?
Thinking like a customer also helps you differentiate between a likely prospect and a paying customer. For example, if you’re able to see things from your customer’s point of view, answer their questions and offer them viable options, you’re more likely to turn that customer who’s just asking questions to one who seriously considers the research and options for treatment.
Know and understand the most practical and up-to-date techniques and methods for procedures that will work to your advantage in convincing a potential customer to trust your knowledge and resources. This will also help you to develop and modify products and services that cater to individual needs and appeal to your customers.
You’re in the business to make money, but you’re also in the business to generate customers. Remember to focus your business ideas and opportunities to best meet the needs of your customers, not on yourself. By focusing on your customers, you’ll also benefit.
Remember, it’s not about what your customers can do for you and your business, but what your business can do for and offer your customers. One of the most difficult aspects of business that most businesses have in common is the difficulty of changing tactics to meet the needs of the customer before meeting your own needs.
This means getting past task-oriented behaviors and habits and focusing on conditioning customers to a more transparent and user-friendly environment. For example:
Involve your customers in the process of finding the best health care options Talk to them and find out what they need and want. Address their fears and concerns with more than mere lip service.
Show your customers that you care. They’re not just a means to making a profit – they’re a means to establishing yourself as a trustworthy and reliable provider.
Let’s Talk About Voices
Do you know and understand the ‘voice’ of your customers, and what difference does it make? Listen to the voices of your customers and you’ll be better equipped to create products and services that cater to their needs. Listening to your customers’ voices is a common and very effective best practice in many successful businesses and firms. Why? Because:
- You’ll develop content, services and products that they want and need.
- Your services and products will offer solutions that address those needs.
- You’ll offer more services and products that they’ll likely purchase than ignore.
- Taking the time to understand your customer needs saves you time in organization and development of products and services. This saves you time and money.
- Listening to what your customers are saying helps your services and products perform strongly, identify targeted customer segments depending on need and offers a well-rounded range of services and/or products to meet those needs.
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In order to better understand what your customers expect and need, perform a needs assessment. This helps you develop effective and successful services, programs or products that most closely meet the needs of your customers. How do you do this? Focus on more than the needs of your customers. Focus on what they want.
Consider ‘wants’ as a solution to their issue or problem or as an answer to what they need. Your customer needs a service to provide a wanted or desired result.
Go about determining a needs assessment by taking a number of steps:
- Identify your target audience and their issues
- Establish a team to meet certain goals and objectives
- Give your target audience a human face – what drives them? Who are they? What are they looking for?
- Research options to meet their needs
- Select and collect relevant data
- Determine a plan of action
- Test your plan of action and report and analyze data
What’s the best way to determine what your customers want? Ask them! How do
you do this?
- Request comments/suggestions on your website
- Feedback and testimonials
- Research your customer demographics. Where do most of them come from and what types of products or services are they looking for?
Make your customers feel as if you value them and their input. Listen to what they’re asking or help them determine their needs and goals. Find out how previous customers or clients felt about the products or services you’ve offered in the past and learn from them. Improve. Constantly update your approach to continually meet the needs of changing demographics.
Without customers, you’re out of business. Therefore, treat them with the respect, concern and understanding they deserve. Listen to your customers. Find out what they need and want in order to fully cater your services to meet those needs. Remember, without your customers, you don’t have a business.