“What do your customers want?”
You may have been in the business long enough and have served customers many times over.
Have you ever once stopped to consider what consumers within your industry really wanted?
It’s no secret that customers are the bread and butter of any business. Without them, businesses would cease to exist. That’s why ‘what customer wants‘ should always take the top spot on your priority list.
What do they want? What motivates them? What do they need?
Businesses are meant to provide solutions to what every customer wants and needs. Knowing the answer to this question is the only way you could fulfill this duty. Otherwise, you’re like a person trapped in a smoke screen or a hunter shooting in pitch blackness– disoriented and directionless.
A misguided understanding of what customers want compromises your brand recognition and hurts your reputation. This will force customers to consistently search for the brand that understands what customers care about most. Before you know it, they’ve been swept up by the competition.
You don’t want that.
In this article, we’ll answer “what customer wants” by understanding the two types of customers and uncovering their greatest motivations. Keep reading.
Do You Know What Customers Want Most?
Everybody wants something. These inherent, often unspoken desires are the motivations behind our every action – including our purchase decisions.
Once a product tugs the right emotional triggers that capture your heart, your mind is left to justify what the heart has already decided. The next thing you know, you’ve checked out and the parcel is delivered.
The thing is, this is truest when a purchase decision is internally motivated. It’s an entirely different story in the residential home service industry because what you sell are externally triggered, grudge purchases. This means that you’re selling what customers need and not at all what they want to spend money on.
In other words, in a customer’s perception, you’re already starting off on the wrong foot, even before they make the purchase. They’re frustrated they have to talk to you in the first place, but put on a brave face because you have what they require.
They’ll prepare many defense mechanisms to sift through red flags and only buy the solution that meets their underlying felt needs:
- Money — they want to spend as little money as possible to rectify the situation and get back to normal.
- Energy — they want the least amount of stress before, during, and after the situation arises.
- Time — they want to protect their most valuable non-renewable resource. This loss, particularly when paired with money, compounds stress even further.
Knowing what customer wants means mastering how to soothe their pain points and satisfy their pleasure points. While underlying felt needs remain consistent among buyers, each felt need’s magnitude of importance varies from consumer to customer.
The two types of consumers are transactional shoppers and relational buyers.
Transactional shoppers, as the name suggests, have a proclivity to haggle. They’re the type to value money more than time and lean hard on their personal brew of cognitive biases before purchasing. Transactional people are often low in Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs with an overzealousness for security, safety, and protection.
For this reason, they’re likely to rely on logic most to influence their final decision. You need to make transactional shoppers believe that your solution is the best ROI among all others.
Relational buyers, on the other hand, value their time more than money. It’s not that money doesn’t matter, but they’re more than prepared to spend if the conditions are right. Having more access to money means more freedom to choose the solution that best fits their felt needs and motivations. This includes the entire package: value for money, good customer service, real people, and genuine relationships.
To this end, relational buyers are not aggressively haggling to get the cheapest solution available. They simply want the best overall solution, and they’re willing to pay a reasonable premium for that solution.
The answer to “what customer wants” depends on who you’re talking about. There are unique approaches you can take in order to capture their attention and ultimately win the sale.
Ryan Chute, Wizard of Sales® is the Master Strategist that can dissect what customer wants. If you want to acquire this skill, book a call.
Your Customer’s Strongest Motivation
Whether the purchase decision is internally or externally triggered, there is always an underlying motivation telling the “this is it”!
The question is, what is it?
Well, it’s actually really simple.
Hope does not discriminate between the type of buyer you’re dealing with. You only need to reframe the angle of hope in your messaging to satisfy the “what customer wants” query.
- The transactional customer hopes to get the lowest price to bring them back to a place of happy.
- The relational customer hopes to make the right decision to bring them back to their place of happy.
Unlike any other tangible parameters, hope is an abstract concept and emotionally driven. Yet that’s exactly what makes hope a powerful tool in your marketing. Every buyer’s purchase decision is rooted from the area of the brain that EXCLUSIVELY FEELS and has no faculty for words.
Even transactional shoppers who seemingly use logic, ROI, and cognitive biases prior to committing to a sale are emotionally driven. Their logical facade is a ruse to keep sellers from bamboozling them with a value that breaks through their defenses.
Of course, I’m not saying that being an emotional conversationalist is required to make the sale. Nor am I saying that emotions are all it takes to get buyers to purchase. Great advertising and persuasive sales patter will never mask a substandard solution. Emotions like instilling hope are useful tools to further leverage your business and tip the sale in your favor.
With that being said, the best way to negotiate with buyers is from an angle of satisfying their emotion. Hope does just that. By pulling the correct emotional levers, you speak to them in their most persuasive language.
Hope is the golden thread in persuasion because it’s an emotion that exudes positive resonance. However, the strongest anti-motivator (or motivation that comes from negative resonance) is fear.
It’s not a good idea to build fear among buyers because it paints your business with a bad picture. That’s the last thing you want. To be remembered as the business that guilt-tripped them into buying.
Warning: When you sell hope, make sure you deliver on what you promise.
There’s nothing worse than over-promising and under-delivering. You must be confident that your solutions can really soothe their pain points and satisfy their pleasure points. Otherwise, you lose your credibility and you say goodbye to ever dealing with that customer’s Realm of Association.
The Best Solutions
Specificity is an important pillar of a good solution. The only way you can craft the best offer is when it’s tailored-fit to your targeted audience. In other words, the best offer for a transactional shopper is different from a Relational Buyer. Even if you’re selling the same product, your approach to each archetype should be different.
That’s the key to “what customer wants.”
Below, we’ll look at several examples:
Transactional Shoppers can be further divided into two categories: Oxygen Thieves and Birkenstock Professors.
- Oxygen Thieves
These shoppers are far less willing to bend their set budget regardless of the incredible value you offer. The reason isn’t necessarily poverty; they may have both time and resources to spare, but will intentionally withhold them. In other words, they are either incapable of purchasing or unwilling to do so. This is predominantly derived from a survival mindset, that has their focus on managing, if not hoarding, their resources.
They are called Oxygen Thieves for the fact that if they give you time, they will also take your time, because you’ll struggle to get their money.
- Birkenstock Professors
Birkenstock Professors may lack the financial resources, but not usually. They have the money to buy whatever you sell. They just rely deeply on the justification of your value proposition, with money being the greatest importance in their conscious decision making process.
Birkenstock Professors will exchange their less valuable time for their more valuable money. You may find them unwilling to spend the money, even when they understand the value.
Birkenstock Professors often seem hard to overcome, but the key lies with your ROI argument. Focus on elements of the sale that articulate current and future savings, then layer on how that will reduce the stress of the situation. You don’t need to be the cheapest, bt you do need to bridge the gap between their money and how saving on cost of ownership will pay off, thus, reducing their stress.
Relational Buyers could also be divided into two categories: The Joneses and Daddy Warbucks.
- The Joneses
The Joneses have the resources and willingness to spend, they just fear making the wrong choice. That’s why they often search for premium service providers that will deliver empathetic, competent convenience.
The Joneses will pay a reasonable premium when you can show them how your solution will reduce their ownership burden, effortlessly save them money, and require the least amount of their time and attention. Nearly invisible and effortless customer service is cocaine to the Joneses.They are loyal customers of businesses that are fast, easy, accommodating, and safe to work with.
- Daddy Warbucks
Daddy Warbucks are financially independent. This affords them the added luxury of time. More than anything, Daddy Warbucks are looking for the quintessential buying experience. There is a pretty good chance that they called you because you have a great brand identity.
Daddy Warbucks are looking for all the same things everyone else needs, but their fucus is on their energy. They have the luxury of time and money, leaving you to deliver positive resonance.
This can be done by showing delicious value, and elegant efficiency. Think of a fine dining experience. Frame your solution by feeding their thirst for satiating their pleasure points of identity, purpose, and adventure.
Understanding Your Customers
“What customer wants” is directly proportional to “who customers are.” You need to know them, understand their motivations and learn their innermost desires to sell their perceived best offer.
Beneath their calm exterior, every verbal cue, body language and subtle gesture indicates a customer’s true identity. The burden of reading between the lines is on your salespeople. They must be equipped with the skills to distinguish buyer archetypes, extract their pain and pleasure points, speak to their underlying felt needcs, and close the deal.
As it Turns Out, Hope Is a Strategy
Napoleon Hill once said, “leaders are the dealers in hope.”
A key part of being the industry leader in your community is to sell hope. Be the provider of delightful experiences, embody the persona of an empathetic, competent expert that delivers their solution conveniently. That’s all your customers are really hoping for.
That’s the real hope strategy, and that’s the solution to “what customer wants.”
If you need any help building a hope strategy for your residential home service business, reach out. Wizard of Sales® help. Book a call.