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Business How to Start a Business Discovery Customer Segments

Nicholas Olsen
Nicholas Olsen
Front End Web Development Techdegree Student 19,342 Points

Advice on meeting, interviewing and learning about customers?

What advice can you give on interviewing, meeting and learning about customers? I just can't imagine how to go about this appropriately.

For example, lets say you find your niche customer segment attends a particular trade show. So you go to the trade show and then what? Walk around with a clip board and ask people to answer some questions?

Or maybe you customer segment includes local small retail shops. Do you just call them up and ask them to answer a few questions? Show up in person and leave a business card?

How do you do these things?

Also, is there any advice on conducting an effective interview? How do you evaluate what questions may provide valuable insights and which ones are a waste of time?

1 Answer

Andrei Petrik
Andrei Petrik
3,991 Points

Nicholas, this is just Networking 101. Approach it as if you would with any type of networking activity.

Tap into your existing network. Start with close contacts and ask them if they can recommend or introduce you to the customer you want to learn more about. With each successful interview, ask your interviewee if they can recommend someone else for you to chat with.

What you'll discover is that you won't have to make any cold approaches at a tradeshow because you'll have enough people to talk to just by growing your network through existing and new connections. But if you do need to make cold approaches, you'll be very comfortable.

Some quick tips:

  • be clear about your objectives and what you hope to discover through your conversations
  • by your new contact a coffee
  • develop a genuine interest in learning more about each person
  • don't be a robot, engage in a conversation - this is just rapport and relationship building
  • leaving a business card will not get you anywhere - if you want to interview someone - you do the work.
Gavin McNeill
Gavin McNeill
Courses Plus Student 4,556 Points

Some great tips! Very young and very new at networking, but, this gives me some insight as to how I can interview a lot better!

Wonderful ! saved me the trouble of freaking out strangers to answer some questions :) ... Thanks, All the best from Dubai.