Business 2.0 Spots the Value of Customer Intuition
Business 2.0 spots the trend of building customer intuition. Their current edition includes an article about the trend of Companies Tap into Consumer Passion. The article talks about the increasing number of companies that are experimenting with user created advertising and product innovation. A key part of that is to keep your ear to the ground to discover your most passionate customers. The article mentions a technique that I've been advocating for a long time now. You need to be aware of what people are saying about your product, service and company. Use Technorati, PubSub, Feedster, Google and any other tool you can find to monitor internet conversations. When you find them, participate in them. An honest and timely personal contribution to a developing conversation can change the trajectory of a conversation from negative to neutral or even positive. You can't control the conversation but you can influence it.
The tricky part for companies isn’t discovering whether such passion for their products exists -- if eBay (EBAY) has taught us anything, it’s that there are enthusiasts for just about everything -- but where those customers can be found. In his book Democratizing Innovation, von Hippel says that “users on the leading edge of a target market often congregate at specialized events or sites that manufacturers can easily identify.” This involves more than ad hoc tactics such as shoe companies staking out inner-city basketball courts or automakers flocking to conventions where drivers flaunt their modifications; it’s also about continuously mining specialized search engines like Technorati and Daypop for postings relevant to their businesses.
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Couldn't agree more. You and I are on the same wavelength with our postings.
Technology is making "getting closer" to customers a lot easier now, but just because it is easier, doesn't mean it is easier to "hear" what they are saying.
Companies still have to understand lifestyles, how products are being used/hacked, etc. Amazing how much common sense can play into this!
Posted by: K. Todd Storch | Sep 28, 2005 9:36:49 AM