What do your customers need?

Hello.  I need to make smooth, fresh ice every hour or so at my ice rink.  Quick, what is the solution?  Knew it.  You thought, “Zamboni.”  What a perfect solution and a great reminder for marketers.  

The definition of customer needs from BusinessDictionary.com is; a problem that a customer intends to solve with the purchase of a product or service.   We could make it more complicated, but let’s try it this way.  The next time you are working on a new product or service, make sure that you can explain why the customer the needs your product or service in customer terms in three sentences or less.  You are not doing it right if you mention your solution in the three sentences.  Without understanding customer needs, there is no incentive for the customer to pay, if they do not pay, you lose your job or go out of business. 

 Frank Zamboni had experience as a mechanic and an ice maker.  With his family, he opened one of the largest ice skating rinks in the world.  Prior to his invention, workers had to go out on the ice with tractors and shovels and then hose water across the surface of the ice.  This was very time-consuming and expensive.   

The Model A Zamboni Ice Resurfacer was invented in 1949 and has been used ever since for the intended purpose.  The invention was based on a tractor blade that made the surface smooth, a device that swept up the shavings and another device to put down a thin top layer of water that would freeze quickly.  Genius!

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One response to “What do your customers need?

  1. I learned today that Zamboni was not selected for the 2010 Vacouver Olympics.

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