Marketing Innovation:

Sales Success

Knowing Your Customer

Understanding Customer Needs and Defining New Market Opportunities

By: Vadim Kotelnikov

Founder, Ten3 Business e-Coach Inspiration and Innovation Unlimited!


"The absolute fundamental aim is to make money out of satisfying customers." ~ John Egan

Types of Customers of New Technology

  • Enthusiasts (or Innovators): purchase new technology just as it comes available and before anybody else.

  • Visionaries (or Early Adopters): purchase new technology before most companies, but only after there are references available from other users.

  • Pragmatists (or Early Majority): want to see well-established references before investing substantially in new technology.

  • Conservatives (or Late Majority): purchase technology only after it has been on the market for a while and thus tested and accompanied by good support.

  • Skeptics (or Laggards): don't purchase new technology if they can help it.



Winning Customers

Creating Customers

Customer Care

Creating Customer Value

Customer-driven Innovation

Value Innovation

Innovation Is Love

Customer Feedback

Marketing Strategy

Creative Marketing

Market Segmentation

Differentiating With Different Types of People

The 10 Commandments of Power Positioning

The Art of Selling

How To Sell Your Ideas To Decision Makers

How To Make Effective Presentations

The Power of Personal Charisma

Selling with NLP: 8 Steps of Active Listening

Endgame to Selling

Closing the Sale

Customer Retention

Listening To Your Customers

Customer's Perspective of Quality

Customer Satisfaction

Customer Partnership



Understand What Motivates People

"You have to find out how to press the "hot buttons" that turn consumers on, and this reality means gaining an understanding of what motivates them in real-life situations."2 To turn people on, you must, first, find out what they really want, and then, show them how to get it.

Winning Customers (PowerPoint download)

Define Your Target Market

Think of your target market and clients you wish to work with list the best qualities. What is their specific title or profession? Can they be categorized easily? List every important quality you can come up with. Consider geography, cultures, age, income level, values, interests, etc.


Example: My target market is small business owners who provide professional services such as accounting, architecture, engineering, IT, coaching, consulting. They operate their businesses with a high degree of integrity, they value building relationships with their clients and they are interested in growing their companies. Also, they are enjoyable to work with and they appreciate a good laugh and fun!6

Offer a Solution To Your Customers' Problems

Selling Is Problem Solving

What problems do your current or potential customers face? List 5 distinct problems, issues, pains, dilemmas, challenges, worries, fears, unsatisfied desires even if they seem unrelated to the services you offer. Write these succinctly and clearly.

For each of the 5 problems/pains listed, spell out your solution what customer value do you produce; what can your clients expect to get out of your work with them? Don't just list your services here. Instead, specify the end-result benefit they will receive.  Speak to your market as if you know them personally; appeal to your market's desires and pains.

For example, if the problem is, "They never have enough time," your solution and value proposition might be, "Our services take the pressure off you and give you less to deal with." The solution is not your service per se, it is the time-saving result your service translates into.6... More

Understand the Dynamics of Customer Needs

Understanding customer needs will help you define new market opportunities and drive innovation and revenue growth in every aspect of your organization.

In the new rapidly changing economy, however, customer predictability is dead. "Whatever a customer wants today may not be what he or she wants tomorrow. Or he or she may want more of it. If you're offering low prices, customers want those prices slashed further. If you're offering state-of-the art products, they want them newer still. In meeting ever-increasing customer demands for lower, faster, better, and newer, companies are driving themselves and their competitors to the brink."4

You can't predict the future, but by establishing effective change management practices you can be ready for whatever it brings.

Use Different Types of Interaction

You don't need a degree in psychology to compete successfully in the marketplace, but you do need some way to figure out the different styles of interaction different people prefer to use. People tend to lead their decision-making process with one of the four functions: intuition, thinking, feeling, and sensing. Vividly differentiated differences that are anchored to a product and engage the above functions can enhance memory of your current and prospective customers... More


 Discover much more in the


Do Continuous Customer Research...

 Case in Point  Ford Motor Company...

 Case in Point  Black & Decker (B&D)...

 Case in Point  Dell Inc...

 Case in Point  Nypro...

 Case in Point  Corning...

 Case in Point  Nike...





  1. "Differentiate or Die," Jack Trout with Steve Rivkin

  2.  "The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing", Al Ries & Jack Trout

  3. "Managing New Products", Thomas D. Kuczmarski

  4. "The Power of Corporate Kinetics", Michael Fradette and Steve Michaud

  5. "Customer Intimacy", Fred Wiersema

  6. "Quick Guide to the Four Temperaments and Sales," Brad Cooper

  7. "Get Clear About Your Core Marketing Message," Martha Carnahan, MC3 Strategies

  8. Winning Customers, Vadim Kotelnikov

  9. Your People Skills, Vadim Kotelnikov

  10. Harnessing Cultural Intelligence (CQ), Vadim Kotelnikov