Terry Dean didn't beat around the bush when he wrote:

You cannot create desire for your product.

Trying to do so is a losing proposition. All we do in business is find out what hopes, dreams, fears, and desires people already have...and supply them with products that match. We create value based around what people already want.

Yet it's EASY to forget this at times. I'm just as guilty here of trying to change people at times instead of tapping into the desires they already are seeking after.

But is that true? Is the best product plan to find out what people are already buying and give them more, or a better version of it?

Let's consider a quote I shared with you a few days ago from John Scully (paraphrasing Steve Jobs):

How can I possibly ask somebody what a graphics-based computer ought to be when they have no idea what a graphic based computer is? No one has ever seen one before.

When Apple created the Macintosh, nobody wanted a graphical computer. How could they? They didn't even know such a thing existed, which, in fact, it didn't.

Do people want graphical computers now? Oh yeah! Even our telephones are graphical computers now. But here's the question:

Did Apple create that desire?

Sort of.

Let's answer that question with a question: do people really want graphical computers, or are graphical computers just a tool for getting what they want?

Some people want a computer for the fun they have playing games on it.

Others want a computer because it empowers them to do things that give them a sense of accomplishment and fulfillment.

Still others want computers because they empower them to work more efficiently. They want to work efficiently so that they can earn money more quickly and easily. They want to earn more quickly and easily so that they'll have more time, energy, and money to spend on things they really enjoy. Sometimes the rabbit hole runs pretty deep.

The point I'm getting at (and what I think Terry was really saying) is this:

People desire products that help them fill their existing desires.

If you want to create desire for your product, first, you need to know what people already desire -- you can't create those desires. Then you need to create products that help people fill those desires. And finally, you need to convince people that your product will fill their desires.

Once they're convinced of that, then they'll desire your product.

Don't be afraid to create products that break new ground, just because nobody wants them yet. Just be certain that your product will fulfill your customers' existing desires, and that you have a rock solid, crystal clear way to communicate that.

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