A Faster Horse


“If I had asked my customers what they wanted, they would have said a faster horse.”
– Henry Ford, not-a-carriage-maker

Ford Horse

Turns out, sometimes the customer doesn’t know best. Just as Henry Ford realized, most of us are limited in our understanding of what’s possible by our knowledge of what’s available now.

If you know your customer’s business, know your industry, and know your business, you’ll be able to anticipate your customers’ needs and provide them with a solution they may not have even known was possible.

Ford’s quip involves a deep insight into how a business should approach customer needs — and therefore, how they should market to their customers.’Keep a pulse on what it is your customers are trying to accomplish when they buy your product or service.

If you sell air compressors, for instance, your customers are buying access to the ‘4th utility’ — compressed air. They’ll want that access to be dependable and efficient and at a reasonable cost. Market to that.

If your customers take orders — think restaurant servers, office supplies, whatever — you could sell them paper and a pencil. Or, you could sell them a tablet computer with custom software.

Not only should this make them faster and less likely to make errors, it also makes order fulfillment easier. All of which is to say, more profitable to them. And, hey, you sold them something with a bit higher margin that paper.

So’ what’s the ‘faster horse’ your customers think they need? Do you have a better idea for them? Then tell them!


Just in from the “series of tubes”…’

This is so a thing in logo design (& design in general)… http://goo.gl/oKveRn
(Airbnb’s new logo looks like… something familiar)

We heard you’re looking for something to “whale” away the afternoon…’http://goo.gl/WSwKLl

A little designer/developer satire to start the day. “…not really feeling the color here.”‘http://goo.gl/NAib3r
(Client feedback on the creation of the earth)

Dean La Velle handles Business Development for Rokusek Design, a national, regional, and local marketing firm headquartered in Quincy, Illinois.