What is Design Thinking?
Design thinking in business is understanding customers` needs and coming up with ways to solve those needs. As a business owner, you should provide products and services that solve the needs you’re your customers are facing. Many upcoming entrepreneurs create imaginary customer needs and solve them. As a result, the end product may not be accepted in the marketplace.
An entrepreneur should interact with his/her customers to understand actual customer needs and market gaps. After identifying real market needs, they should create solutions.
Understanding the customer need
To understand your customer needs, you need to talk to people in your target market. For instance, if you are starting a cheese making business, you might want to know how your target customers are currently accessing the product from your competitors. Probably they have to walk to the shops to buy the cheese. Maybe they buy the same variety of cheese every time they purchase. You might decide to offer free deliveries within a specific radius from your shop or offer various flavors of cheese. Through a market research, you have identified a gap and solved it.
Design thinking is about solving challenges faced by your customers, rather than solve a challenge you think your customers are facing. You can identify a market need through direct interaction, questionnaires and online surveys. You can also browse your competitors` websitecomments sessions and read customers` concerns. A competitors` social media page is also a good platform for clients to air their grievances. You can now create a product or come up with a service that addresses those grievances.
After understanding your customers` needs through effective market research, you now go back to the drawing board and start brainstorming solutions. After realizing that clients in your town have access to only one type of cheese, you should research more flavors to add to your cheese to make it unique.
You then make cheese samples with the various flavors you found out. Share your cheese with friends and family members and ask them for honest feedback. Keep improving your product and after you are satisfied with the final version, take your product to the market.
It sucks when you create a product that your customers don`t want. Save yourself that trouble by doing market research to understand customer needs, then come up with creative solutions to those needs. That`s design thinking.