Understanding the customer needs of tomorrow is a wonderful thing and a fantastic talent to possess. The purpose of market research is to identify customer needs. The purpose of marketing is to fulfil those needs. But how do you convince people to buy a product that they don’t know they actually need? Let’s go invent tomorrow instead of worrying about what happened yesterday…
Apple launched the original iPod in October 2001
When Apple launched the original first generation iPod in October 2001, it was not the worlds first portable music player. Similarly, it didn’t have the most features and couldn’t claim to be the best in the market. But the iPod managed to eventually change the world. It did so through minimisation in design and focused on creating an experience that was more than just a functional process. They created an experience that consumers would love.
The iPad revolutionised content consumption
The same can be said for the iPad. Initially touted as ‘just another e-book reader’ the iPad is now revolutionising the way we consume content. Very few people could see when the iPad launched just how successful it would eventually become. It’s impossible to suggest that every new product Apple launch will be a huge success. There have been some failures along the way. Things that failed to delight customers. Like the launch of Apple Maps. They are not perfect. But they do get stuff right more than their competitors.
Apple’s delightful formula for success
Creating a value proposition for your business enables you to solve problems in a specific market. Your job is to solve the problem on the customers behalf at a price the wider market will tolerate. This is where Apple supercharged the traditional formula. Instead of satisfying customer expectations – the aim becomes to smash them out of the ballpark. Delighting customers is the new marketing.