It’s Not About You
I love that you are still following through with this awesome series called “Will it Fly?” I hope it’s providing the tools you need to navigate the marketplace as you prepare to launch your idea into the world.
Last week, I helped you measure the climate of the market, discover your target audience, find who the top influencers are and even what products are currently being offered in the space.
Hopefully by now, your idea has taken new shape through all the exercises and “homework” we’ve completed. You are doing awesome!
The kicker is this. The most important thing to realize for your business to succeed is: the business is not about you at all. I’m sorry – I know you’re doing so much work, but ultimately it’s all about serving your target customer.
So, let’s dig deeper into understanding your target customer. Let’s get into the mind and emotion of your end-user so that you know exactly what they’re going through and how you can best provide a solution. Let’s call it Your Customer P.L.A.N. which is broken down into four sections:
Problem – Language – Anecdotes – Needs
Problem: A business idea is really just a potential solution to target and solve your customer’s pain or a problem. The better, simpler and faster you can solve it, the more successful your business will become. How do you find out what those pain points are? By asking the right questions. Here they are:
- What’s something about [topic] that frustrates you?
- If you had a magic wand and could change anything related to [topic] what would it be?
- What problems are costing you the most money right now?
- What’s the most important activity related to [topic] that you do?
- What related to [topic] takes up the most time?
- Do you use anything to help you with [topic] already? What do you like about it? What do you wish was better?
- What’s something related to [topic] that you have to keep doing over and over again?
Language: When I see a little baby staring back at me, I do a high-pitched baby talk to communicate on the same level…using lots of face expressions and such. It’s hilarious if you think about it, but very effective. When you start a business, one of the most important things you can do is understand the language your target customer uses to communicate. What words do they use to share their pains and struggles? How do they describe their dreams and goals? Speaking the same language can help make a connection and build trust.
Anecdotes: An anecdote is a short, interesting story, and they’re some of the most powerful tools you can use in your business…especially when you are marketing and promoting your products. Framing it all within a story can have a massive impact on how well others relate and respond. It reminds me of a guy who was about to go bankrupt, but then one day he found an anecdote and everything changed… his name? Abraham Lincoln. (see – it totally works!)
Needs: In this final part of the P.L.A.N., with all the research you’ve done in mind, create a list of needs that your target customers have. Now remember, there are different levels of need. If your idea is to create and sell healthy smoothies, you could be meeting multiple levels of need, such as:
- Need for space for hip, young teens to gather
- Need for meal substitute for weight loss
- Need for healthier lifestyle
- Need for nice cold thirst quencher on a hot day
Instead of just choosing a product or business to build at random, now you’ve got something with good research to back it up, increasing the likelihood that you are building something that actually matters. And that’s the PLAN.
Hopefully, your original idea has morphed into something unique by now, and you have more clarity on the direction to take it.
Again, don’t forget to check out the book Will it Fly by Pat Flynn and sign up for your very own companion course for free which I am using for this series. It goes into a lot more detail which will help you even more.
You know what they say: if you fail to plan, you plan to fail. But in light of Will it Fly, I’m taking it even further: if you fail to plan your PLAN, you’re a failing plane crashing toward your own planned failure.
In other words, Don’t be a Failed Plantain; be a Banana with a Plan-a.