One area to consider is people’s motivation. What do they try to accomplish when they purchase a product.
- Image-oriented motivation.
A desire to be practical, to have the biggest and best product, or to be on the cutting edge of technology is an image-oriented motivation. The image people have of themselves plays an enormous part in their buying decisions. If you list the last ten purchases you made and honestly state why you made them, you’ll find that the image you want to create dominated eight or nine of your purchase decisions.
Cars are a good example. Most cars are good for eight to ten years if all you care about is transportation. But we all care about a lot more than that. A car is a very visible product that we own, and we use it to project an image. Some people want to project an image that they put their children first; they will drive a van. Other people want to show that they are successful; they will always have a new, fancier car. Still, others want to show that they are independent; they will drive an older car.
- Usage – oriented motivation
Once you have distinguished a customer group based on a broad category, you can segment it still further into user groups. Consider status-conscious bikers who buy mountain bikes because they are more comfortable. Some of them may just want to take casual rides, others want to ride to work, and still, others ride for exercise. Each one of the groups might want slightly different features, and this could give you an opening.
Companies often buy products based on their usage applications, such as a production machine for stuffing forty-two components into a PC board. The purchase decision will be based on what product is best for a specific use.
- Entertainment motivation
Some products are for entertainment, fun, or adventure. Each of these motivations calls for a slightly different product or service. Two entrepreneurs created a mail-order wine catalogue for people who wanted more variety than they could get at a local liquor store. When looking at customers’ motivations, they found out that some customers bought wine for dinner parties, others because they enjoyed more variety and still others for a sense of adventure. They aimed their catalogue at the last group, people looking for a sense of adventure, and now have a mailing list of over 100,000. They include stories about a wine’s origin and other interesting data that people exploring new wines would be interested in.