Marketing

Your Product Design – keeper or keeper?

Let’s pose a specific question: Is Marketing really different for businesses relatively similar to ours or are the techniques and approaches really the same?

Before you begin thinking that it would be too difficult to tell the difference between one industry and another, let’s also look at what we do and what we bring to the table. Regardless of what we sell, for example, our service or our product, we provide a service that would otherwise cost somebody else to provide.

We were recently presented with a plumber who fits new and existing houses for a small fee. They were brought in when he was doing a similar task at a friend’s house and were regarded as a remarkably successful professional. However, we wouldn’t go to that plumber unless he was absolutely the best. More than anything else the individual bits of information would be a clue.

The plumber, who had spent a fortune on life, described his work in terms of ‘make sure the walls are mindful and the windows are perfect’ and did not go into details about how the walls were insulated and how he worked with glass. In his case he described himself in terms of ‘build it and they will come’ and didn’t even mention the concept of warranty, warranty, warranty!

This, more than anything else, is a standard process of many businesses today: they will sell us a product and they will add and replace any component that is required so that they don’t miss a square.

On the business side these components are ‘value add’ such as providing a product that meets or exceeds customer expectations. To do this the people who are in the quality control mind set must be thinking about it in terms of ‘I can weld this and these…. whatever.

The simple illustration is about that key to brilliant business: ‘think’ in terms of what the customer actually needs rather than what they think they need!

For example, critics had though that mobile phone companies would ‘talk up’ their products in terms of design, and maintain a consistent, practical look throughout the product life cycle.

In an increasingly short Attention span society we needed to ‘thinkhow relatabledo me an idea is’.

Behavioural economists, behavioral psychologists and behavioural economists get a lot of this. And it’s backed up by research including work with Dr. David Mutchings at the University of Harvard who has spent years doing research at the brain’s attention span and attention span.

In the area of office work it has been a persistent challenge: our clients will look at us and say ‘you can’t do that, you can’t be In Go revenue white paper’ or ‘you are too expensive’. Of course, we also tell them that what we are looking to do will help them make more money!

Does it matter to the business? How does it matter to us? Why should we care? Absolutely! Considering what our clients want to receive should be a major factor in our design efforts.

Marketing

Where does our own behaviour and our personality chip in? How will this affect our ability to engage with them and produce a result that is better for them?

To help illustrate the importance of trade show displays, let’s look at a sample of what a new presenter might say in response to a question:

Q. ‘Who in your company does the design and development?’

A. ‘Well I think you mean our graphic designer, cuz that one is a bit like me.’

Q. ‘Which is more important to you? The design or the quality?’

A. ‘D Nutrits Computer Systems shares my view on which is more important.’ 

Q. ‘Do you know my colour, or is it green?’

This can be real for a variety of reasons. These days many of us are caught up in the need to become a specialist in our field because market conditions become so competitive. We can have an outstanding skill in a particular subject and want to specialize in that domain, but contrary to popular business belief, charisma and personality make up less than 5% of what we should consider when coming up with that new product or approach.

We are not trained to do what we do, let alone pull it off effectively in front of an audience.

Our own personality is what will ultimately bring us out of our own unique quirky way of smiling, looking and feeling in a way we never experienced before. There are many things that we have to give up when winning out in the business world, but at some point, in every bid, business card, presentation we have to reflect the character of the company – at the exhibition and everywhere we have a leg up.

As a result companies are suddenly losing the key to their own brand because, in a lot of cases making decisions as far as production goes are not theirs.

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