Knowing your Customer

knowing your customer by Ryan Crossett

Here where I live in Northern Laos, we have some local ladies who are ferocious saleswomen.  They peddle their bracelets and bags to any tourist walking by or trying to enjoy a meal at a restaurant.  What they are selling, more than the bracelets and bags, is peace.  Because, if you shell out for one of their products there is the hope that they will be satisfied and leave you alone.  Their technique may not be the best and probably isn’t based on customer satisfaction, but they’ve perfected it.  They know how to get their customers to cave.

Not all customers are the same.  Each person is looking for a different type of product and value.  While some customers look for a good price, others look for quality, convenience or some look at social impact.  I think that most people would say that all of these things are important to them, but not all valued the same.  Take for instance a university student who has limited finances.  He is going to sacrifice quality and convenience for price.  If your customers are primarily university students, you will want to take this into account and provide the best product for the price that they would be willing to pay.  You can have a wonderful product, but if you aren’t paying attention to who your customers are, you won’t end up having very many.

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