Questions you should be asking your customers to create better products

It’s simply heartbreaking how many people refuse to talk to their customers.

The only interaction they have are support requests. Comments they leave on your blog don’t count. Instead of having these conversations, they outsource it to a firm or act like it doesn’t matter.

Why is that?

Honestly, I have no idea but I have a few theories:

1. It doesn’t matter to them.

2. They don’t know what to say

3. They have all the information they need to make world class products

Well, if you’re in the first or third category, this post won’t help you. You’re already perfect(that was me being sarcastic). If you’re like the rest of us mere mortals then read on. This post will be helpful for you.

Questions to ask your customers

All these questions, without exception, should be followed up with another question — “why?” Most people will give you the answer they think you want to hear which doesn’t help you.

You need deeper insights to craft messaging and products people love. I’ve been doing this as much as possible for KyLeads and the answers have been insightful. A simple “It’s cool” won’t cut it. The point is to understand why it’s cool and how you can incorporate that into your brand.

On to the questions:

1. Tell me about your role at work/life/home

Why it matters: You’re trying to understand their daily life and how your products and services fit into that. If you’re selling clothes and the person identifies as a professional woman, how do your clothes fit into that lifestyle?

Does she wear your products to the office?

Does she save them for a night on the town with girlfriends?

This will help you create better messaging for your target customer.

2. What’s the hardest part of your day? What do you wish you had that doesn’t exist?

Why it matters: You’re looking for pains. More importantly, the way your customer really describes their own. We’re talking exact words. Chances are if they describe it like that then other people will relate to it.

The other part of the question is probing for new areas you can expand your product or features into. No one said you have to be a one trick pony.

3. How important is (x) to you?

Why it matters: In the above question, x is your category/the problem you’re solving. So that could read how important is losing weight to you? You’re trying to get an idea of how motivated people will be to make a purchase decision involving your product.

If they say it’s unimportant to them then you need to reposition it or think about whether or not you want to continue pursuing it.

Losing weight may be on the top of the list for stay at home moms while professional men aren’t moved by it. This lets you know if you should go after that audience segment with your existing solution or if it’ll be worth it to develop a new solution for them.

4. What do you think the ideal solution would look like?

Why it matters: This forces them to think about best case scenario. In a perfect world, your product is the best case scenario. Again, this will help you refine your product.

You’ll also be able to use the information to craft your messaging. The most successful brands are able to communicate the process of taking someone from where they are to where they want to be.

You can’t do that if you don’t know what the end result looks like for your customers.

5. What would prevent you from using this product?

Why it matters: This question is useful if you have an idea for a new product or one which you’re getting ready to launch. It’ll shed light on issues you didn’t know existed. Look for the objections that come up and whether or not they’re legitimate concerns. Often, it’s related to time, perception of the value, or a combination of both.

6. What made you purchase in the first place? Follow up with, why was that important to you?

Why it matters: This one is focused around your messaging and branding. It’ll let you know if you’re going in the right direction, there were a lot of objections to overcome, and how important your product is to them.

Use the exact words of your customers throughout your messaging and tweak your value based on what they tell you is important to them.

7. When did you realize you had a problem that needed to be solved?

Why it matters: This will give you insights about great top of funnel content. Different people are triggered by different things. You can create content that helps them understand what they’re facing.

For example, people may have been suffering from back pain but they have no idea it’s a real problem. When they search the internet, they may type something like “What does it mean when you have on and off lower back pain.”

If you don’t know people search for those types of things then how will you create content around it? The short answer is you can’t.

These are just a few of the questions you should be asking your customers. The more you do it then the more questions you’ll come up with on your own.

Remember, it should be more like an informal conversation han a job interview.

Let me know about your best performing questions in the comments.

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