The best way to test your business plan and to learn is to talk to customers. Customer interviews are about exploring what you don't know you don't know.
Avoid surveys or focus groups since surveys assume you know the right questions to ask and as a results surveys assume you know the right answers too. The main problem with Focus groups is that they quickly evolve into "group thinking".
When approaching customers make sure:
- To understand the customer problem before you pitch a solution
- Don't ask customers what they want, measure what they do, validate what they say with what they do.
- Stick to your script, you need consistency to instill some method to the process
- Narrow down and filter your customers as you progress
- Face to face interviews will be more accurate
- Start with people you know who fit your target customer profile - it helps you practice.
- Take someone along with you, it helps you to keep more objective
- Pick a neutral location, more casual atmosphere
- Ask for sufficient time, it provides right time expectations without rushing
- Don't pay or provide incentives to prospects, it could skew the results
- Avoid recording interviews, it makes people self-aware and biased
- Document results immediately after the interview while your thought is still fresh.
- Prepare yourself to interview around 50 people in order to get an accurate picture.
Now let's get to work; it's time to tart developing a strategy and put all this into practice.
One of the core values we have as a company is to inspire and empower people in all aspects of their lives. Additionally, if you want to read about our Custom Software Solutions and Consulting Services, please visit www.isucorp.ca