Built to Love – Review

Built to Love – Review

Examples of products that people love include Apple iPods, Navistar’s LoneStar truck, Webkinz stuffed animals and KitchenAid Toasters and waffle makers. These products meet the functional needs of the customers and they elicit positive emotions. Emotions help all of us to better capture our attention, to persuade us, and to help us remember

We may have a compelling business strategy from an analytical perspective. Everything can seem rational and point to business success. Rational mindsets often forget the reality that emotional factors are also key.

Designing products and services that strike an emotional chord with customers doesn’t happen by luck. Emotions must be understood and products designed with emotions clearly in mind.

So, what helps customers to feel good about a product? Product design, color, simplicity, etc., are examples of features that can elicit emotions. However, what is most important is integrity. If the product doesn’t meet expectations, the customers will no longer trust you. If the product does deliver, then word-of-mouth will play its helpful role. In the end the product needs to be able to stand on its own.

Advertising that connects with emotions is key. It can take time to connect with people given the enormous competition of firms trying to capture the attention of potential customers.

Apple is a good example. Its software is simple, user friendly, and ready to use out of the box. Apple’s storerooms invite potential consumers to come and try the software and hardware out. The stores have open and friendly employees who are genuinely passionate about the products. Apple’s website is also another good example. It is simple, clean and engaging.

The authors outline a simple, three-step process for developing products that meet the emotional needs of the consumers:

    • Determine appropriate emotions. Determine what feelings you would like the product to evoke?
    • Craft emotion strategy. Determine how your product will evoke the feelings.
    • Translate strategy into features. Determine the points where the customer will interact with the product – called “touchpoints.”

The authors present a tool called the emotion map (also known the “eMap”). It is tool to help ensure that emotions are factored in the development of a product.

Built to Love - Review

Highlights by David Willden