Jeff Bezos recently proclaimed that market research isn’t really helpful. In his letter to Amazon shareholders, he denounced the merits of market research—which surprised many given the company’s reliance on data-informed decision making. From my perspective, he is spectacularly wrong; even if there are nuggets of truth in his commentary. While Bezos’ sentiment may have a little bit of truth in it—the bulk of your customers can’t imagine products that haven’t yet been invented—market research still plays a critically important role at successful organizations, including Amazon.
For some time, organizations have used experience design (XD) research to help sculpt processes, services, events, and products that customers would interact with. This kind of research focuses on the quality of each experience and the context surrounding how people experience it.
Empathy plays an integral role in the way companies interact with consumers. It helps us understand where someone else is coming from, what they think and how they feel. As a result, it helps organizations get a better understanding of the exact kinds of products customers want. It can also help companies improve processes, services, product packaging, marketing campaigns, and more.
How well do you know your customers? You may know what they like and what they do, but do you understand why? Context is often overlooked as a key driver of decision making. The more concrete of a grasp you have on the customer journey, the better positioned your company will be to achieve its business goals.
Building a stronger company starts with serving up the best customer experience possible. But how exactly is that accomplished? Instead of shooting in the dark, use a combination of existing data and qualitative insights to inform the decisions you make. Your customers—and your bottom line—will thank you.
These days content is king. But where do you find enough ideas to keep feeding that ferocious content machine? The best solution is to know the needs of customers, and then mine those needs for content-inspired ideas. Here are 13 ideas to get you started: