Having Effective Customer Conversations
GM and Happy Thursday,
This newsie comes to you from a small town outside Bet Shemesh, IL, where I’ve been spending some time with family.
While I continue doing these Customer Convos™️, I’ve also made my fair share of internal team calls on the front lawn to enjoy the desert sun.
As you can see, Noah has been a real value add.
I realize that I’ve mentioned our Customer Convos™️ a few times in the past, but I’ve failed to say why we are doing this, what questions we are asking, and give the blueprint of the master plan.
Well, here goes:
Understanding Customers' True "Jobs to Be Done"
The Art of Effective Customer Conversations
Uncovering Hidden Customer Needs and Desires
Some of the Actual Questions we are Asking
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Understanding Customers' True "Jobs to Be Done:"
In the ever-evolving landscape of business and marketing, understanding your customer's needs is the key to success.
One framework that has gained significant attention in recent years is the "Jobs to Be Done" framework, introduced by renowned professor Clayton Christensen.
Picture this: a fast food restaurant eager to boost the sales of their milkshakes. They conducted extensive studies, seeking feedback from customers about how to improve their milkshakes.
They asked about flavors, textures, and pricing. However, despite all their efforts, the changes made no impact on sales or profits. It seemed like a dead end.
But then, a curious colleague decided to take a different approach. Instead of focusing on the product itself, he asked a thought-provoking question:
"What job arises in people's lives that cause them to come to this restaurant to hire a milkshake?"
And so, an enlightening journey began.
Observing the customers' behavior, the team discovered a fascinating pattern. Almost half of the milkshakes were sold before 8 o'clock in the morning, primarily to customers who were alone. These individuals would buy only the milkshake and swiftly drive off with it.
To unravel the mystery further, the team ventured outside the restaurant, approaching milkshake enthusiasts as they left, and asked them a simple question: "What job were you trying to do for yourself that caused you to come here and hire that milkshake?"
The answers were revealing. These early morning milkshake buyers had a common job to be done – they had long and monotonous drives to work, and they needed something to make their commute more enjoyable.
With one hand on the wheel, they desired an activity that would keep them engaged. They weren't hungry yet but knew they would be by 10 o'clock, so they wanted a satisfying treat that would last.
This insight was a game-changer. The customers weren't merely looking for a milkshake; they were hiring it to fulfill a specific job in their lives.
It wasn't about the ingredients, flavors, or price – it was about the milkshake's ability to keep them entertained and satiated during their commute.
Watch Christensen walk through this here:
This revelation is at the core of the "Jobs to Be Done" framework. It emphasizes understanding the fundamental job customers are trying to accomplish and aligning your product or service to meet those needs better than any alternatives.
In the case of the milkshake, it outperformed competitors like bananas, donuts, and bagels, offering a unique solution that lasted longer and fit conveniently in their cup holders.
By embracing the "Jobs to Be Done" perspective, you gain a deeper understanding of your customer's motivations and aspirations.
It enables you to shift your focus from incremental product improvements to identifying the fundamental job your customers are hiring your product to do. With this knowledge, enhancing your offerings becomes a clear and logical process.
The Art of Effective Customer Conversations
Now that we understand the importance of uncovering customers' "jobs to be done," let's explore the art of conducting effective customer conversations.
These conversations serve as the gateway to unlocking valuable insights that can shape your product strategy and drive customer satisfaction.
When engaging in customer conversations, it's crucial to adopt a curious mindset and ask the right questions.
Remember, you're not just seeking surface-level feedback or opinions; you're digging deeper to understand the underlying motivations and desired outcomes.
Start by setting the stage for the conversation. Ensure that the environment is comfortable and conducive to open dialogue.
Whether it's in person or over the phone, create an atmosphere that encourages customers to express themselves freely.
When initiating the conversation, avoid leading questions or biased prompts. Instead, strive to understand the broader context of your customer's lives and the challenges they face.
Ask open-ended questions that encourage them to share their experiences, frustrations, and aspirations. For example:
"Can you walk me through a typical day in your life and the challenges you encounter?"
"What are the biggest struggles you face when trying to accomplish a specific task or goal?"
"Tell me about a time when you felt delighted by a product or service. What made that experience special?"
By focusing on their experiences rather than your product, you create a space for customers to articulate their needs without feeling pressured or influenced.
This approach allows you to uncover valuable insights that can inform your product development and marketing strategies.
As you listen to your customers, pay attention not only to their explicit feedback but also to their behaviors, emotions, and unmet needs.
Sometimes, customers may struggle to articulate their desires directly, so be attentive to subtle cues and patterns that may emerge during the conversation.
Additionally, consider conducting contextual inquiries or observing customers in their natural environments whenever possible.
This firsthand observation can provide deeper insights into how your product fits into their lives and the specific jobs they are trying to accomplish.
Once you have gathered insights from your customer conversations, analyze the data and look for common themes or patterns.
Identify the recurring "jobs" that customers are trying to fulfill and the pain points they encounter along the way. This understanding will guide you in refining your product offering and addressing customers' needs more effectively.
By embracing the art of effective customer conversations, you position yourself to uncover the true jobs your customers are hiring your product to do.
Uncovering Hidden Customer Needs and Desires
When we decided to jump in on these convos, we booked some time with The Customer Whisperer, Katelyn Bourgoin, on Mentorpass.
We chatted through the “Jobs to be done” framework and put together a list of questions to dive deeper into the triggers that made customers search for a new product or routine.
In our quest to understand customers' "jobs to be done," we've discovered that these insights go beyond product innovation and differentiation—they can also serve as powerful marketing angles and hooks.
Here is how some of these insights can theoretically be applied to our Meta ad account today, using a real-life example from a recent JRB customer conversation:
During these conversations, we initially focused on discussing the versatility of Miracle Balm and how it can transform one's makeup routine with just one product.
However, as we dug deeper, we uncovered a recurring trigger point among many customers—their experience with aging and changing skin.
For a significant number of our customers, aging and the accompanying changes in their skin become a crucial concern. They are searching for something easy and versatile that can make their skin feel and look good again.
This insight is a goldmine for our marketing efforts because it directly addresses a common pain point shared by a significant portion of our target audience.
With this knowledge in hand, we can create marketing angles and hooks that speak directly to our customers' desires.
For example, we can highlight how Jones Road's Miracle Balm addresses the challenges of aging and changing skin.
Our messaging can emphasize the simplicity and effectiveness of our product in rejuvenating and enhancing the skin's appearance.
By understanding our customers' needs and aligning our marketing messages with those needs, we can capture their attention and position our brand as the solution they've been searching for.
We can craft compelling headlines that tap into the trigger point of aging and changing skin, such as "Rediscover Youthful Radiance: Transform Your Skin with Jones Road's Miracle Balm."
Remember to continuously gather feedback and engage in ongoing customer conversations to refine and strengthen your marketing approach.
By uncovering hidden customer needs and desires, you unlock the power to create marketing messages that truly connect with your target and current audience.
That’s it for this week!
Any topics you'd like to see me cover in the future?
Just shoot me a DM or an email!
See you next week,