I once got in trouble at school for reading more than I talked to my seat mate.
In my defense, Jessica and Elizabeth Wakefield were way more interesting than most 9 year olds.
I still prefer to read whatever is interesting – not just business books. Right now, I’m reading a book about how food’s taste is manufactured (Yum!). If you ever need a kick in the slightly soft rear end to eat less processed food, check out The Dorito Effect.
I won’t got into all the refrigerator-light-bulb moments in this book but a surprising business strategy popped up from McCormick (you know, the company whose spices you use all the time):
Marketing to their ideal clients
How many times have you heard of the “Ideal Client Avatar” and had to think about gender, age, income, or race? And then sighed like it was pineapple tidbits day in the high school cafeteria?
Pretty much every time, right? McCormick begs to differ.
Instead of profiling the same, bland Ideal Client Avatar, they think about something they call a “need state”, an emotional requirement for food.
“A single mom who has to put together dinner for her fussy teenage daughter has a need state for a no-fuss dinner with a hint of adventure—the flavors of an exotic Asian country with lush forests and waterfalls, perhaps—to shoo away the dreariness of the Tuesday evening meal. She wants food that makes her family feel steady, satisfied, and pleased, but also enthusiastic, energetic, and a bit daring. An unmarried male software coder in his early twenties grabbing a bite before a six-hour multiplayer session of Guild Wars 2 might share the identical need state. So might a sixty-eight-year-old retiree in Arizona who played golf all afternoon but promised his wife he’d fix supper.McCormick used to see the world in demographics—moms, single males in their twenties, men over sixty-five… Need states are a more nuanced view of the human condition.”*
- What is the need state of your ideal client?
- What is the never-ending thought that plagues them?
- The fear that shows up in their dreams?
The best way to find out? The same way McCormick does it:
- Hang out where they are
- Get to know them
*from The Dorito Effect by Mark Schatzker