Designing new products is a stressful process. How do you recreate the success of your last product? What do the customers really want out of this new product? Business owners spend endless hours in meetings with their design team trying to answer these questions when they could just ask the customer.
The easiest way to make sure that you have a winning product is to include the customers in the design process and listen to their feedback. If you ask them what they want and then deliver it, you’re far more likely to see good sales from day one. But if you keep trying to guess what people want without asking them, there’s a strong chance that you will get it wrong and the product will be a flop.
These are some of the best ways to include your customers in the design process for new products.
Check Reviews Of Existing Products
Reviews of your existing products are the best place to start when trying to come up with new ideas. You need to identify what was good about your old products and where you could have improved. So, go through as many reviews as possible and take notes on the things that people bring up often. This should give you a pretty clear idea of what makes your product special, so you can emulate this in new products. If you don’t have that many customer reviews, you should focus on an email campaign to encourage people to leave more feedback before you do anything else.
Ask Your Brand Community
The people that share common ground based on their mutual love for your brand are your brand community, and these are the people you should ask for advice. But before you can benefit from their expertise, you need to focus on fostering a community in the first place. Read a guide to selecting a community platform and set up your own forum where customers can meet and discuss your products. These conversations will be a goldmine of information and you can interact directly with your community to ask them what they want from your next product. Don’t forget to use social media platforms to connect with people as well.
Get People To Test Prototypes
When you have a product idea and you are in the prototype stage, testing is incredibly important. Input from people that have never used your products is still valuable, but you should also get advice from existing customers. There are a few different ways that you can do this but trade shows are one of the easiest places to find testers. Take some early prototypes along with you and reach out to people that are already familiar with your brand. If you advertise on social media and your community platforms, letting people know that they can try an exclusive new prototype, you should get plenty of interest.
When you think about it, it seems crazy to design products without involving the customer. These are the best ways to get their insights and create a product that you know they will love.