Who Are Your Customers?

Based on the interviews you did with your customers, you should have a good notion about who they are (and who they are not).

However, you need more than just a shallow knowledge about them. In other words, it’s not enough to tell me they are women, in their 30s with no kids.

This is a good start. But, if you really want to be able to properly answer this question you’ll have to do much better than that.

WHY IS THIS A FUNDAMENTAL QUESTION?

Because by deeply knowing your customers you’ll be able to take much better decisions about other important elements of your business model as: Value Proposition, Channels, Customer Relationship, Revenue Streams, etc.

For instance, let’s suppose you have to design a campaign to reach your customers and make them to be interested in your product. What marketing channels and message would you use?

Obviously, it will depend—besides age, sex and location—on who your customers are, their habits, preferences, hobbies, jobs, mindset and more.

Therefore, by ignoring your customer’s deeper characteristics, you’ll end up making wrong decisions about creating, communicating and delivering value to them.

Another good reason refers to the fact that not all of your customers are equal. Some of them will use your product in totally different contexts than others. So, to align your decisions towards each of your customer segments, you need to be aware of their differences.

FINDING THE ANSWER…

It all starts with your true interest on them as human beings—not just future sources of revenue.

Hence, you must start defining them as individuals, not as a group of people with some common traits. These definitions are what we call “personas”.

As I’ve mentioned before, you’ll probably identify more than one persona as your potential customers.

In his book “X: The Experience When Business Meets Design”, Brian Solis presents several attributes and behaviors that may form your persona as:

  • Name
  • Age
  • Lifestyle and workstyle
  • Brief narrative (one-line summary)
  • Expectations of the product
  • Channels
  • Frequently performed tasks + desired tasks
  • Tools and touch-points used
  • Trusted Advisors and Resources
  • Pain-points
  • Goals and aspirations

Notice how specific these attributes are. This means you’ll really have to empathize with them as they were a really close friend.

Most part of these answers will come from the Problem Interviews. Pay attention to them and start putting yourself in their shoes.

Right. Now you have identified the personas from your customer segments, it’s time to answer…

What is Your Value Proposition?


Recommended Readings:

Business Model Generation

by Alexander Osterwalder and Yves Pigneur

X: The Experience When Business Meets Design

by Alexander Osterwalder and Yves Pigneur

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