During a recent MSNBC interview with Kat Cole, the Group President of Focus Brands and COO of its subsidiary, Cinnabon, she mentioned three business rules she always follows. Kat is credited with turning Cinnabon into a billion dollar brand, so I take her advice seriously! One of the “rules” that she mentioned is to “stay incredibly close to your customers, they have all the answers” A business woman after my own heart!
In my last post, I talked about How to Offer Exactly What Your Customers Want to Buy. I highlighted one of the best ways to get information about your customers and prospective customers – ask them!
However, interviewing your clients isn’t the only way to learn what your client niche really wants from you. With just a little amateur sleuthing, every new offering can be a best seller!
Here are two places to find out more about your customers and what they want.
One: Your Blog
My first suggestion might surprise you. Blogging can actually be a tremendous source of information for your business. And I mean your blog, not other company’s blogs.
As you blog more frequently, you will start to notice a few things. You might notice that certain blog posts get more attention than others. They get shared more often, they bring in more traffic, they get more comments. One or two might even go viral.
When this happens, pay attention to the topics. What did you talk about in that blog? What problems were you solving? What dreams did you show them how to fulfill? What appealed to your market about that post?
These are the topics and solutions that your clients and prospects care about. This is very valuable information for creating offerings that your market really craves.
The other gold mine in your blog is the comment section. What are the comments about? What are the comments telling you about what your target audience have been struggling with, looking for, craving?
If you don’t generally get a lot of comments on your blog, here’s a quick tip. You can write the first comment, and make it a question. Once there’s already a comment there, others will be more likely to follow suit.
Two: Social Media Groups
Both Facebook and Linkedin have groups for just about any topic, subject or industry you can think of. Search out those groups that contain your target audience, and start listening to the conversations. Pay attention to which posts are getting a lot of discussion and attention. What problems are they discussing? What solutions are they searching for? What are they saying about you and your competitors?
I recommend that if you have a helpful response to a question or discussion in a group, don’t hesitate to chime in. Start to develop a relationship with the group members. Establish a reputation for being helpful. Give them a reason to know, like and trust you.
Groups can be a great place to test your ideas. Ask the group for their feedback on something you are going to offer – people generally love to be helpful and offer their opinions. When you ask for advice about something you are developing, you are also building interest in your future offering.
Would you like expert guidance to determine what your customers and prospective customers really want? Has your company’s growth stalled and you are looking for ways to give it a jump start? If so, then click through for a complimentary consultation with a Certified Provendus Growth Strategist.
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