Aseem Badshah is the President and CEO of Uptown Treehouse. You can see more videos here on Docstoc or visit his blog.
Entrepreneurs build a business based on an idea but never talk to anyone about it. How can you be completely customer centric?
- Find your niche. How can you solve problems for people that you solve problems for?
- Better decision making capacity. Customers will drive your business decisions, where to market, advertise, take the next version of your product.
- Constant feedback. Customers will be more likely to tell you what you are doing wrong or right and you can pivot your business based on that.
In many cases, entrepreneurs get an idea and it could be a really good idea but what they’ll do is they’ll start building it right away and they’ll spend two years and a million dollars building out this product or this service or this business that was based on that idea and they haven’t really talked to anybody about it yet. What I’m asking you to do here is really think about how your business can become completely customer‑centric where every, you know, step in the pathway, you’re talking to your customer, you’re bouncing ideas off of potential customers, and you’re allowing them to really drive the direction of where your business is going.
So you may have this idea but now because you’re having those conversations with people who would be your customer, you’re able to really find your niche. Understand what their problems are. Figure out where you can play a role in the existing industry and really solve problems for people that you want to be solving problems for.
It also gives you a better decision-making capacity. Every day, business owners have to think about what to do and why and maybe they don’t have the data to back it up, maybe they’re not talking to the right people. The right people are your customers. They should be driving a lot of the business decisions that you’re making, where to market, where to advertise, what’s the next version of your product. All of these things, if you have a customer-centric business or you have an open relationship and open communication stream with your customers, you’re able to identify these things and make better decisions.
Lastly, you get constant feedback. Once your product or service is out there and you’ve had these open channels and two-way conversations with your customers, they’re going to be much more likely to come and tell you what you’re doing wrong, what you’re doing right, and then you’re able to pivot your business based on that. Hey, maybe there needs to be a new feature here because a lot of your customers really aren’t feeling happy without it. Now you know you’ve got to get on that quickly and do it right away and all of a sudden, your products have been made much better because of that.
So really think about how you can create that connection with your customers at every step of the way in the business process and think about how your business can become completely customer-centric.