I spent the majority of my career, working as a marketing person, supporting engineers. On a regular basis I would find myself reminding them we built products for customers.  And on a regular basis, they would tune me out.

Patiently they would tell me about how wonderful their product was.  They would hint at how customers would want it if I just did a better job of telling them why they should want it.

But the funny thing about customers is they don’t always do what they should, or want what they should, or buy what they should. The do what they want! And sometimes, maybe they just don’t want what your are selling!  I was reminded of this, recently when I read a blog post by Seth Godin on how irrational customers can be. He said:

The opportunity, then, is not to insist that your customers get more rational, but instead to embrace just how irrational they are. Give them what they need. Help them satisfy their needs at the same time they get the measurable, rational results your product can give them in the long run.

The lesson is simple: It is always about your customer. It doesn’t matter how cool your product is, how fast it goes, or how much it saves. None of those things matter, unless they matter to your customer.