Luring the Average Consumer 22:43 on Thursday
To launch a new product you should first do research, preferably with a lot of data points (ie. people). Then you should find out who the “average consumer” in each segment is. By targeting this “average consumer” you will most closely answer the needs of each segment. Not exactly, but close enough. Right?
As a hypothetical example, let’s take people who want a music phone. You interview 1000 people. 400 of them want a phone with nothing but calling, text messaging and an MP3 player. Another 400 want a phone with lots of personalization features along the basic calling and texting, FM radio, web browser, email, calorie calculator, spreadsheets, profiles, camera, video editor and an MP3 player.
Creating a statistically average phone for this “music phone segment” results in a product that is viewed as too complex for the first 400 people and not enough for the other 400 people. The rest of the users might be satisfied, or not.
As a disclaimer, I do realize statistics is field not limited to basic averages. Yet, I’ve seen people at Accounts Dept use Excel as a handy replacement for grid paper, then calculating the number using an external calculator. So you can never underestimate what people are capable of with numbers. ;)