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Why How We Buy Matters

Forty years ago when Mr Ryan the greengrocer was thinking about his marketing strategy he didn’t have as much to consider as we do today. His customers were locals. They arrived on foot, only bought what they could carry and shopped every day. It was important to have fresh produce, a ready smile and time to chat and connect. Mr Ryan knew he could often upsell a fresh cream doughnut to Mrs Howard when she came in for a loaf of bread and a quarter pound of ham. In a world before 7-Eleven convenience stores, Mr Ryan didn’t have the challenge of being found. He didn’t have to be more convenient or cheaper. He simply had to open the doors. His marketing strategy was simple. Sell what people are buying when they’re buying it.

Of course, things are very different today. Everything about the business of marketing becomes more nuanced when it’s possible to get a litre of ice cream delivered to your door at midnight, without having cash in your wallet or shoes on your feet. Your customers and clients aren’t as predictable or as transparent as Mr Ryan’s. You have to consider how they buy, not just what and when they buy. You have to go deeper.

How does your customer’s evolving world shape and alter how you do business? How will businesses like yours thrive in the future by meeting not just the wants and needs of customers, but also by understanding their lives, habits and behaviour?

Image by Taylor Herring.

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