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Understanding the Marketplace & Customer Needs

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  • 0:00 What the Customer Wants
  • 2:10 What Is Available
  • 3:06 Customer Satisfaction
  • 4:08 Building Relationships
  • 5:03 Your Market
  • 5:38 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Yuanxin (Amy) Yang Alcocer

Amy has a master's degree in secondary education and has taught math at a public charter high school.

Watch this video lesson to learn how you can find a market for your products. Learn that you have to know which product to pick or create before becoming a successful business person.

What the Customer Wants

In this lesson, we will see what it takes to find a market for your product. We define a market as a group of buyers for a particular product or service. You will see that you need to match your product to your market. If a particular product doesn't match its market, then that product will not be successful. If you try selling that product, you will find that you won't sell that many. For example, trying to sell a dog grooming kit to owners of hairless dogs won't find much success. This is because the product and the market are not matching. Your goals in finding a market are the following:

  1. Find out what your customer wants.
  2. Find out what products or services are currently available.
  3. Find out how satisfied your customers are with the current products or services compared to yours.
  4. Build an ongoing relationship with your customers.

Let's pretend that you want to create a product or service that will be successful. Where do you start? You want to work with dog owners specifically because you are also a dog owner, and you understand these people. The first step in finding your market is to find out what your potential customers want or need. This can be done through what is called market research, which is basically asking lots of people for their opinions.

You begin to attend many dog shows, and you start conversations with different dog owners to see if there is anything that would make their life easier. In talking to so many dog owners, you start to realize that there is one thing that most of these dog owners want.

Many of them have told you that because they have just one dog, they worry that their dog is lonely or bored at home when they are gone at work. They would like something that they can use to entertain their dog while they are away. This entertainment needs to be clean and safe for the dog and the house.

You think about what these dog owners have told you and believe that you have the perfect product for them. You have actually created a movie that keeps playing on its own. This video is geared to keep a dog's attention. It shows things like cats, fish, steaks, and other things that dogs love! Your own little dog loves to watch this video while you are away.

What Is Available

Now that you know what the customer wants, you now need to look into what is currently available. What products or services are already in place that these dog owners can go to for help with their problem? You want to make sure that your product is unique. Otherwise, you will have to compete with another product that already has a customer base. It is much easier to gain new customers than to compete with another product or service that has been around. When looking to see if there are other products or services that are comparable, don't simply look for an equivalent. Also look for other solutions that provide a similar benefit to the customer.

To see if there are any other dog movies out there, you go to the local pet store. You browse the dog area and don't see any. Your product is unique. You do see lots of chew toys and such. Now these toys do provide a similar benefit. But is this benefit greater than yours? This is determined by the level of customer satisfaction.

Customer Satisfaction

Customer satisfaction is determined by how well the product or service works for them and if they are happy with the results of using the product or service. Your unique product may be similar to other products or services currently available. If this is the case, you need to consider the level of customer satisfaction that is gained by using each product or service. If the customer gains the most satisfaction from using your product, then your product will be more successful. If customers are satisfied, then they will talk about and recommend your product or service to others. But if they are not satisfied, then they will look elsewhere and even discourage others from buying that particular product or service.

To find out if the dog owners you talked to earlier use these other dog toys, you get in contact with them again and ask them. You find that yes, they do get a certain level of satisfaction, but this level of satisfaction is very low. Your dog movie, though, has a much higher satisfaction level. You love it and so do the family members that have a copy of the dog movie.

Building Relationships

The key to keeping your customers loyal and coming back to you for more is to build your relationship with them. Building your relationships with your customers goes beyond the desired sale of your product or service. It includes providing excellent customer service to answer questions that may arise when using the product or service. It includes helping the customer problem solve and use the product or service to solve the customer's problem to the customer's satisfaction.

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