How do I conduct market and customer research that gives me deep insight into my customers’ real needs, such as pain points, desires, options and price sensitivity? Find out more on customer discovery with our guide.

One of the most common mistakes entrepreneurs make is assuming that if they build a great product, sales will naturally follow. It’s not quite as easy as that. Your job as a business owner first and foremost is to serve your customer base – helping them achieve goals, tackle problems and provide satisfaction. To do this, you must think of your market as real people and immerse yourself in their dreams, beliefs, ways of being and, crucially, the pain points they face that you will solve for them. Customer discovery is part detective work, part exercise in deep listening. Here are some resources to help you understand your market from the get go.

Customer personas

Put yourself in your customer's shoes by using this Customer Personas canvas 

from Design a Better Business

WHAT? A template and guide for visualising your customer's key characteristics

WHEN?  You are beginning your customer discovery journey and need a clear outline of who your customer is

WHY?  Until you identify your customer, it's difficult to design a product or service that serves their wants and needs


An in-depth case study on how one business created their personas from Virgin Start Up.

Net Promoter Score (NPS)

What is Net Promoter Score (NPS) and how to implement it?

from PeoplePulse

Use the net promoter score in a single customer survey question to get reliable feedback on your business.

WHAT? A single customer survey question

WHEN?  You’re looking for a customer satisfaction metric that applies to a product, service or your business as a whole

WHY?  NPS can be used over time to consistently measure satisfaction as well as benchmark your business to sector averages


A video to help you understand net promotor scores from TemkinGroup

Lean customer engagement methodology

Get close to your customer and involve them in your product development process with the customer development method

from Lean Startup Co.

WHAT? An article sharing three steps of customer discovery:

1. Talk to your target customer before you start to build anything

2. Create high-impact feedback loops with customers

3. Build minimum viable products and test ideas in increments

WHEN?  You are developing and launching a new product or service

WHY?  A key to success for any type of business is its ability to make well-informed business decisions, based on accurate and up-to-date market research

Customer surveys

Use Survey Monkey to create free customer discovery or satisfaction surveys

Use the net promoter score in a single customer survey question to get reliable feedback on your business.

WHAT? A free (for basic features) online survey creator, complete with analytical tools 

WHEN?  You're looking for a way to do customer polling or to create customer satisfaction surveys

WHY?  Gain real and up-to-date customer feedback to improve your product/service and customer relations


An alternative free online survey provider is CrowdSignal

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