In conversations around innovation, it is common to hear arguments around how much, or how little we should pay attention to feedback on our brand, ideas, products or services.
Some believe that thorough focus groups where you gather your ideal customers and show them all your ideas, product prototypes and get them to compare and test, is really important.
On the other side, we have those that believe the audience knows nothing about what they really want. It’s kind of the ‘you don’t know what you don’t know’ type of thing.
My take on it?
I believe we should do a bit of both.
I see client’s missing crucial information about their customers that explains so much about why their business is going the way it is. This is why I love customer journey mapping for example. We get to walk in our customer’s shoes and wonder how their emotional world is impacting how they relate to us.
However, I have also seen brilliant ideas and projects collapse after asking for too much feedback. Client’s deflated after asking too many people for their opinion on their newest concept or brand name or even logo. Ideas that I feel, would have done quite well.
Entrepreneurship for me is chasing that wild calling coming from within. And no one has your story, your pain, your take on life. So it is that intricate combination that puts you in a great position to come up with something no one else has.
Many great ideas have come from just following that inner knowing about how something could be better. As Marty Neumeier (Brilliant Branding expert) says, ‘You can’t be a leader by following’
So to be practical, this is what I recommend:
Dream and Stay Creative
Open lots of space in your calendar for creativity. How could you package your services in a better way, how could you surprise your clients at the end of the session? What could we name our products to make them more attractive?
Do Your Research
Ideal customer interviews, surveys, market trend reports are all great to get some insight and understand your customer’s behaviour. Gather all that data with your left brain but then ask your gut to make the interpretation. What do you think is really going on? What do you FEEL they are all trying to say? What is your intuition saying?
Understand your customer's emotions deeply
Become a master at understanding your customer’s deepest fears and deepest desires at every step of their journey with you. It’s what they feel and want (or don’t want) that holds MAJOR clues to innovate and develop something unique.
Ground yourself and listen
Hearing feedback about your ideas and offerings can be painful and confusing. After gathering data, open space for some grounding. Meditation, a walk in nature, even disconnecting from the whole thing for a couple of days can be great to allow you to access your inner intelligence about what feels right for you and your business.
Stay true to your why
It is your reason for being in business and building a brand. Your why will guide you in moments of decision making. Revisit your roots often and remind yourself why you started in the first place!
Would love to hear from you? Are you struggling to make decisions in your business? Have you ever become paralysed from having too much feedback?
All the best to you all!