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    Know Your Customer

    Posted by Luis Serpa on December 4, 2008 - 8:51 PM
     

    It’s already evident that successful enterprises are a result of carefully planned and researched strategies. Without understanding how your customers think, you will never be able to really get them to engage with your site, service or product.  

    Now, what most forget is that it is too easy to THINK you know your customers and assume their tastes and needs.  It’s even more dangerous to label your target with an ill-conceived or over-generalized persona, like “Soccer Moms” or “High Executives.”

    See the example of Blackberry users, recognized all over as “Stressed Executives” and “Workaholics.”  It was an interesting surprise to see that more than 400,000 of them already downloaded the new Blackberry MySpace application, and that they collectively updated their “mood and status” more than 2 million times during the first week of use alone.  Who would have guessed that a MySpace application would have found its record of downloads on the Blackberry platform?  Well, it seems that someone at MySpace did and I would risk saying that whoever thought of it had some real research to support her decision or this idea would have faced too many “Are you kidding?” reactions to be green-lighted.

    Not all customers are equal.  People can have drastically different behaviors depending on their personality, life-style, work and even geography. You cannot risk confining them into simplified personas without taking enough time to understand them first.

    Knowing your customers means testing, trying and observing their behavior.  Avoid oversimplifying or judging them by the use of labels, and, above all, never ever EVER be afraid of contesting your own assumptions.

     

    See original post at Vox Inc – Customerspective Blog



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