Would a surgeon operate a patient without making a diagnosis? So, why do we start a business or launch a product without first knowing the market?

This is the great controversy, we think about what business or product we could invest, and we leave aside the most important part: the buyer. He is the one who ultimately decides whether to buy us, or not. What can we do to make us the ‘lucky ones’? There are different variables that companies neglect, for example, keep selling ‘what you have’.

Would anyone question selling scarves at 50 degrees of temperature ?. No, right? And yet, they do sell products that are out of demand, why? The answer is clear, difficult to understand, but clear: ‘It’s what we have.’ That’s why since the beginning of the crisis more than 127,000 companies have closed.

However, businesses like ZARA, APPLE or NESPRESSO are breaking sales and profit records. How can this be? Without a doubt, they had a clear need to know the market, to know what motivations they have, what needs, what their perception is on certain aspects and their willingness to change their buying behavior.

For this, they worked three aspects:

1.- A market investigation, where all variables of tastes, demands, preferences, needs and current and future motivations were rigorously analyzed.

2.- A study of the competition, its prices, its distribution channel, its points of sale and the type of demand of the current business.

3.- Virtual communities were generated, where the client could be heard and conversed with. As for example Nespresso, which has more than a million followers on Facebook, and Zara, with almost ten million followers.

At this point, not only did they have quantitative information, that is, how many people would be willing to consume a specific product, but by being part of their community, now they could feel themselves participants in the construction of their product. They are the ones who decide what they want to buy, and the companies THAT LISTEN, adapt their offers to these demands.

What we really need is a change of mentality that allows us to be relevant to current consumers, a shift from the position of seller to that of relationship builders.

Companies fail when they are not able to meet needs, and these will only occur with a change of attitude.

WILL WE LISTEN in capital letters, or will we continue doing things ‘as always’?