Stop Thinking Logically — and Start Thinking Like Your Customers

The environment we’re in when planning marketing campaigns, developing products, and deciphering customer behavior may be hindering us.

I’ll give you an example: I’m sitting in a beautiful, sunlit conference room in Jacksonville, Fla., right now. It’s a great place to brainstorm and plan with the team. However, it also forces us to think logically. We’ll do X. Competitors are doing Y. So customers will like our product better and act because of Z.

Here’s the problem with that approach: The customer isn’t sitting in an equally beautiful and sunlit conference room analytically making choices. No! They’re living life.

Their kid just dropped ice cream on their lap. They’re watching your ad on TV while checking Twitter and talking to their spouse. They are upset that their favorite football team traded its top cornerback for some draft picks while mindlessly searching for some new pet food.

In other words, we are thinking logically and they are not. For your marketing to move them, you have to understand what they are going through.

Anxiety and friction are two factors that decrease customers’ likelihood to purchase your product that have nothing to do with a cold calculus of benefits and dollars and cents. Your customer does not consider these factors through an entirely logical lens because, hey, we’re all human. Consider the customer mindset, and you’re likely to find some clarity.

I’m not a car guy, but I had a great mechanic before he retired. Just a really honest and knowledgeable guy (he used to fix jet engines in Vietnam) with a single garage. When I had a car problem, he would emphatically explain to me, “You see, the problem is your frim fram was trying to overrun its RPMs every time you accelerated your sprocket balancer. Your frim fram isn’t meant to do that. That’s why it was overheating. So we had to replace it, and while I was in there, I took off the gasket manifold and re-sparked your plugs to deep set your pistons.”

Daniel Burstein is the Senior Director, Content and Marketing at MECLABS Institute. Daniel oversees all content and marketing coming from the MarketingExperiments and MarketingSherpa brands while helping to shape the marketing direction for MECLABS — digging for actionable discoveries while serving as an advocate for the audience.

Publish date: March 4, 2020 © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT