Care about your customers
This may sound like old, generic advice. But pay attention, the key is the word your. Your customers are not somebody else’s, and that’s why you shouldn’t rely on the same strategy that another company is pursuing.
Also, keep in mind what researchers call “liquid expectations”: your customers interact with different markets and once they’ve fallen in love with some aspect of a given industry they’ll start to look for it everywhere else. They, and not your competitors, are the ones who are raising the bar.
Care about experience
Another common advice is to focus on experience. A well crafted experience is what guarantees customer satisfaction and retention; and a great experience will earn you true customer love.
Your real competitors are all the obstacles in your customers’ experience. Eliminate those obstacles and you’ll crush competition. Guaranteed.
Care about the future
Everybody knows what Henry Ford said: “If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses.” Fewer know about author Neil Gaiman’s advice: when people tell you something’s wrong, they are almost always right. When they tell you how to fix it, they are almost always wrong.
Your customers will tell you what they think they need now. Your job is to give them what they’ll really need tomorrow. This is what’ll make your business grow - forcing your competitors to chase after you, and not the other way around.
As we’ve seen, these pieces of conventional wisdom still hold unexploited secrets. Let the design of experiences be an ongoing activity in your company. That’s the true path to success.