When it comes to graphic design, understanding your customers is just as important. Are you clients young, energetic and fun? Consider adding some bright colors to your packaging like we did for Just Drink It’s soft drinks and juices. Are your clients smart and sophisticated? Why not add an image of a brain to your design like we did for BDDB’s logo. Understanding your customers enables you to design your marketing materials to speak to them. But, when it comes to defining your client, there’s two ways to go about it: the old school, more traditional way or the less talked about modern method.
The traditional way of defining your customer
If you know a little about marketing, you’ve likely come across one of the thousands of articles and books written about how to define your target customer. Most of them go something like this… What is the age of your customer? Is he a male or female? What’s their job? What do they do on weekends? Is he married? Does he have kids? How much money does he make? And so on and so on… By answering these questions, you’re supposed to gain a clear image of who your customer is so it’s easier to tailor your messaging toward them. While this method of defining your customer will help somewhat, there’s an ever better way. A method that is not only simpler, but also much more realistic.
The realistic, smarter way of defining your customer
The reality is, all your customers will be of different ages, and have different interests and lifestyles. Even if your product is predominantly geared toward 30-year-old men, a quick look at your Facebook Analytics will surely reveal you also have some female prospects in their 20’s or 40’s. The traditional way of defining your customers doesn’t account for all these variations. How could it? So instead, it’s better to examine the one thing all your customers share: their desire and what they WANT. So how do you figure out what they want? Ask yourself, “What problem does my product solve?” One word of warning here. Don’t simply look at the physical solution you’re offering them. For example, if you sell luxury automobiles, you might think, “my customers simply want a fancy car.” Actually, your customers want more than that. Your product satisfies an emotional need: they want status and to be admired by friends and family. They want to feel like they’re the best, and having a luxury car helps them show that to the world. Another example…let’s examine Thailand’s Villa Market. What do customers who shop at Villa really want? Do they just want groceries? Or do they want a temporary escape back home, to the western comforts that make them feel relaxed and at ease? Expats can obviously get a lot of western foods at Big C (and at a much cheaper price), but they certainly won’t get the same sense of comfort and familiarity they get at Villa—and they’re willing to pay a premium for that.