Do You Understand The Customer’s Problem?

Don’t listen to what they say, follow the money instead

If you want a customer to become price insensitive towards your product or service, you have to build trust. The fastest and most direct way to create this necessary trust is to understand your customer’s problem. Yet, one of the challenges in actually obtaining this understanding is to be able to determine what these problems are even when the customer isn’t fully aware of them. A customer’s perception of a problem and the reality of what that problem actually is are two different things.


A customer may believe that one of their current problems is being able to get groceries during the COVID-19 crisis, as an example. However, if we were to look at where they actually spend their money, we can paint a different picture. If a hypothetical group of surveyed customers says that their main expense and main concern is on groceries but, they spend more money on takeout—we have to prioritize their spending habits. How people spend their money and why they save their money is a better indicator of the problems and concerns that are truly important to them.


If you are able to determine what your customer’s spending habits are, showcase how these spending habits reflect their real problems, and then market stories related to that problem without overtly promoting the specific solution that you provide—you create a winning formula to generate trust. Combine your customer’s spending habits with what they are sharing online and you can start optimizing your branding and marketing strategies.


Image Credit: Unsplash


Want To Become An Influencer? Don’t Worry About Your Competition

There’s more than enough opportunities for all of us to succeed

If you want to be known for something, don’t think about what others are doing. “Comparison is the thief of joy,” is a quote from Theodore Roosevelt that still rings true. Some of us get lucky and grow large communities from only four to five viral videos. Timing is important however, it is extremely difficult to determine what’s the perfect time and place to make your content go viral.


You also don’t need to go viral to succeed. Even if you only gain a following of 8,000 engaged followers, that still equates to 8,000 people who enjoy your work. If you’re able to sell something of value to them, you can make a great living. This is why you don’t need to worry about other influences in your field.


Regardless of the industry, if you can create content that people want to consume you will win. Some of us have more of an impact than others yet, that fact shouldn’t discourage you from pursuing your craft. There are thousands of authors, bloggers, vloggers, and podcasters with small audiences who are still making a living from those audiences.


Just because one Youtuber has 5 million followers doesn’t mean that they won’t enjoy your work as well. There is a potential overlap that you can gain and that audience doesn’t need to make a binary choice between the two of you. Both of you can succeed, so stop comparing numbers and just do the work because you enjoy it and it helps people.


Image Credit: Unsplash


Some Thoughts On Successfully Selling Socks Online

If you’re selling anything, sell it to people who are starving

Gary C. Halbert once wrote, “…constantly be on the lookout for groups of people (markets) who have demonstrated that they are starving (or at least hungry!) for some particular product or service.” Effective marketing has to start with the inception of the product or service you intend to sell.


To grow a successful business, this product or service has to be something that people want to spend money on. And the easiest way to know if someone will buy what you’re selling is if they have bought something like it in the past.


Unless you’re inventing a new category of product or service, your brand has to distinguish itself by other means. Let us consider the difficulties of starting a new direct-to-consumer sock store. There are basic requirements that you’ll need to meet before you start to get paying customers.


How do we begin with selling socks online?

The foundation of our new sock brand starts with having a clear and distinguishable quality that provides an immediate benefit to our customers. There are a variety of socks that you can start selling, but it’s vital that you start with one specific type. Running socks, wool socks, compression socks, socks for men, women or, kids—you need to start with a clear focus. You can expand your niche after your brand grows but, the customer needs to have a word associated with your brand when they think about you.


If our selling point is comfort, this will be a hard sell because comfort is extremely subjective and needs to be tested in person. The styles that the socks come in are easier to sell but, the benefit of these styles is also subjective and we’ll end up playing catch up with all of the other established clothing brands that sell socks with “unique and quirky styles.”


Even with great messaging on an e-commerce website, social media profiles, and email newsletter it will be difficult to convince someone to try the socks. Promising a logistical advantage in terms of speed of delivery, reliability, and durability can help however, customers expect this from any brand they spend money on.


There is also an opportunity cost of the time it will take to have the customer try on the sock—if they don’t like it—they then have to go through the return-and-refund process. Even if the process is easy, no one wants to add a new task to their day, they would rather spend money on a brand they already trust.


There is always an opportunity

So after thinking about all of these things, why would anyone try to launch a new direct-to-consumer sock store? The reason why someone can and should start a DTC sock store is that even if selling to the market is difficult now, the market always changes. New customers enter the market every year and this gives us the opportunity to enter their minds first.


Image Credit: Unsplash

Scroll Up