Marketing Trends, Best Practices, Advice

Bridge the gap between your offering and your customers' needs

Tina Hutzelman
Marketing - Best Practices


To bridge the gap between customer needs and how your product fulfills them, you'll need to determine:

  1. 1 - What your customers want to achieve.
  2. 2 - Under what circumstances they want to achieve it.
  3. 3 - Why they want to achieve it.
  4. 4 - What human needs are being met.

Jobs-to-be-Done Theory

A time-tested method to shed light on what your customer really wants is by applying the Jobs-to-be-Done theory. Jobs-to-be-Done is based on the idea that customers buy products and services to get “jobs” done and that these “jobs” satisfy specific physical, emotional, or social needs.

Check out Stan. He's buying computers, but what does he really want, why, and under what circumstances?

Although Stan the Stickman bought new computers for his company’s warehouse in Atlanta and main office in Tallahassee what he really wanted was employees to work cooperatively, in realtime, as if they were in the same place. Why? Because his company’s success was built on responsiveness and exceptional customer relations.

What needs to be done: Employees must be able to work cooperatively

Circumstance: They are miles apart

Motivation (answers "Why"): Stan wants to achieve consistent, high-quality productivity and responsiveness to customers

Human Needs: Security (financial), Esteem (respect of others), Achievement


Perspectives Gained from of a Jobs-to-be-Done Approach

You'll realize that you can be "hired" or "fired." When customers purchase your product or service, they’re “hiring” it to help them accomplish a job. If your product does a good job, the next time they need to do the same job, they’re likely to hire your product again. Conversely, if your product falls short of expectations, customers are likely to “fire” your product and look for another to take its place.

Once you start looking at things through the perspective of “what jobs do my customers need to accomplish and why,” it will be easier to communicate how your offering meets their needs.

About Tina Hutzelman

Tina Hutzelman is a marketing professional who helps companies discover their true value - that unique "something" that sets them apart from their competition. For over 20 years, Tina has helped companies tell their stories in a way that is relevant to their customers. One of her favorite questions is "what are you really selling?" She's found that many executives think they are selling the best widget around, when actually they are selling efficiency, shorter time to market, or greater potential for profit. When she's not at work, Tina enjoys spending time with her family and traveling.

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