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I’m in the process of pushing out version 2.0 for TrendPo Insights,  a new product to the TrendPo family. While developing the potential list of features for V.2, the Henry Ford quote (above) kept popping up in my head….. I’m not sure whether he really said those exact words but, I digress. We often hear from many product managers, sales teams and executives that customers don’t really know what they want and its a company’s job to figure it out and let the market decide (validation).

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Validation brings us to Steve’s quote here. Let figure out what we think the consumer wants and build it. Once they see it, they’ll know that exactly what they’ve wanted. Sounds like a good strategy if you’ve got Apple’s resources at your disposal. (Depending on what you’re building, there are cheap ways to validate like paper prototyping.)

It comes down to a company’s ability to speak the same language as the customer. This can be done multiple ways….I’m just highlighting two:

  1. Education- Give the customer the functional language to describe pain points (content marketing and thought leadership do a great job when done well.)
  2. Moccasins your customers– Walk a mile in your customers’ moccasins. It provides the experience and the understanding to empathize and comprehend customer needs.

A majority of the battle is understanding your customers. Once you’re speaking the same language as your customer, it opens the door to great better solutions for your market.

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