I sometimes inadvertently worry potential clients with the phrase, “we’re not making this for you, we’re making this for your customers.” To potential clients it sounds like we’re going to completely disregard their wants and desires, but what it really means is that we’re going to diagnose the issues that relate to their brand strategy ourselves, instead of allowing their self-diagnoses to drive our actions.
“we’re not making this for you, we’re making this for your customers.”
It’s important that you don’t get creative with design until you’ve gotten creative with understanding a brand, and its customers. One of the best ways to understand your customer is putting yourself in their shoes, to think like them. This is the only way you can ask yourself the question, “what does my customer need?” without coming up with a biased answer.
Here are some questions you can ask yourself to get your brand moving in the right direction.
- Who is the customer?
- What impact does my brand create in the world?
- What does my brand sound like when it speaks to people?
I’ll further break down these questions below.
Who is the customer?
There’s a fair bit of information to understand about your customer, we’ll give some examples of questions you need to be thinking about in summary form.
What’s your ideal customer’s demographic?
This is a basic overview of who your customer is. These are facts, who, where, when, etc.
What’s your ideal customer’s story?
The traits, events, behaviors, and challenges that define how this customer relates to your business or idea. Hint: you need to understand their challenges if you’re going to solve them.
What does your customer need to resolve the challenges you learned about from their story? You’re not looking for the solution here, you’re looking for the need.
How can you solve the customer’s needs and exceed them?
What impact does my brand create in the world?
Knowing the impact your brand creates goes hand-in-hand with understanding whether or not you can solve a potential customer’s problem. This can help you determine one of two things:
- We need to change the way we’re doing things so that we can solve the issue our customers are experiencing.
- The customer isn’t experiencing the problem we solve, so they’re not our ideal customer.
Either one of these is okay, as long as the decision is right.
What does my brand sound like when it speaks to people?
Knowing how your brand sounds to others is important because it serves as a filter for everything you’d like to say as an individual who’s in control of that brand.
Example: in a recent case study for a brand, we discovered that the brand voice needed to sound experienced, professional, understanding, and fun. So we took the impact and communicated it in a way that sounded experienced, professional, understanding, and fun.
When an organization consistently shows up for a certain type of customer and consistently communicates it can solve their problem in the same way - a brand is born.
As always, I hope this article brought a new perspective and gets you excited to build something great. To be notified when we post new articles just fill out the email newsletter form towards the bottom of this page.