Wednesday, October 3, 2012

from product oriented to customer oriented... but where the magic is?

Companies like Apple, claim that customers know nothing about the kind of products they need, therefore, their mission is to decode this unexpressed customer need,   create and  deliver a product which  customers  don't know how to ask for or even describe.  Companies like  Apple, even though  they don't admit it, run large scale market research campaigns in order to identify trends and  what people are familiar with.  They then  use this data in order to create a product which is  addressing tomorrow's needs, a product which in essence will be  able to create a market.   At least this is how it has been  up to now.

At the same time, companies such as  Google or Samsung  try to collect as much data as possible, in order to identify what users want, how they want it and when they want it.  One can say that this is like making an airplane, Boeing and  Airbus spend years with end customers in order to find out and set up the final design of a new aircraft. As a result, the create amazing products, able to serve today's needs. 

But there is a third player which takes advantage of both approaches  and this is Amazon. Amazon manages to gather a huge load of data which it then processes.   Based on this data and combining it with  its innovative skills and culture,  as a corporation, it succeeds in developing a product which  customers  didn't expect to have, but needed it for sure. 

For example Amazons'  latest  move,  to give free internet access with the product,  is something so welcomed but also so unexpected. And there is where the magic begins.  When a corporation has the ability not only to start a conversation with customers, not only to listen to what they need but also to be one step ahead of them, carefully preparing the whole customer's ecosystem for products its' going to launch.