Marketing to customer’s needs is dead. Wants are the new needs.
Wherever lies a successful industry the perceived “need” is really a want.
Take for instance Uber. The average person does own and can afford a car (need), but some prefer not to pay for insurance, repairs, gas, etc. because ride sharing provides convenience (want).
I’ve applied this concept to my new venture, online tutoring. There is a huge market for this due to competitive parents/students. Colleges do take into account SAT/ACT scores and any advantage a parent can give their child is welcomed. Tutors aren’t necessary to get high school students into college, but they do have the inside track on test taking skills. Parents/students want to attend their dream school so hiring a tutor is a leg up on the competition.
Expectations, on the other hand, are determined by experience. Yelp is known as a food review site, but what it actually reveals is the customer experience (CX). Read any Yelp Elite member’s reviews and you’ll learn how the business made them feel. This is key to selling any product/service.
Nike, Apple and Disney all market experiences, a.k.a. how you feel interacting with their brand.
The hospitality industry lives and dies by customer reviews.
Marketing today depends on identifying what your target audience wants, then meeting or surpassing their expectations with a phenomenal experience. That means no matter how technologically savvy your company is, what matters is how “soft” your touch points are.
That doesn’t mean you need a customer service hotline for your mobile app you create, but it does mean when something goes wrong you’ll be judged on the response time and solution offered.
Artificial intelligence, robots and technology make our lives easier, but the need for human connection is at an all-time high.
For your current or future business idea make sure you are meeting a want and exceeding expectations from your customers. Do that and you’ll be converting your marketing investment into sales.