It doesn’t matter how long you’ve been involved in Marketing, or whether you’re a “newbie” or an experienced marketer. Sooner or later, you will experience “The Product Creation Blues.” It could happen with your first—or fifty-first—product. In other words, it’s that the feeling of panic or frustration that sets in when you contemplate just how you’re going to create your next (or very first!) product.

Before you decide to create that product, though, it’s best to figure out some answers to several key questions. Unless you get the answers to these, you’ll stay stuck at square one. Simply stated, you’re going to have to do a bit of old fashioned research.

You don’t have to worry, though; it won’t be tough to do. But if you’re serious about creating a good product, it could be a little time-consuming.

Ready? Then let’s get started.

The first question you should ask yourself is: “Who is going to be the target market for this product I’m going to create?”

It will do you absolutely no good to make the effort to create a product if first, you don’t know who you’re going to sell it to, and, next, you don’t know if there’s anyone out there who would want to buy it. Just because you create a product doesn’t mean that “they” will come and purchase it.

Once you’ve figured out who your target market is, the next question you must answer is: “What segment of this market am I going to target?”

Regardless of what market you choose to target, you won’t be able to “corner” all of it. You’ll need to examine the different segments or niches within the broader target market and then determine which of these you’re going to focus your efforts on.

That leads to the next important question: “How do I know which segment I should target?”

The answer to this should be fairly easy. First of all, you must find a group of people with a related interest that has money to spend on your product. Interest in a subject doesn’t necessarily equate to a willingness to buy something related to it. You should also find a segment of the market that has a passion for their particular interest. Golfers, sports enthusiasts, horse owners and breeders are just a few examples of people with disposable income who are also passionate about their interests.

Now, the answer to this next question will be one of the key factors necessary to create an effective product. It is not enough to simply isolate a particular niche of potential prospects for your proposed product. You also need to know: “Where do they ‘hang out’—off and online?”

That is, where do they spend their time when engaged in pursuit of their passion? Is it on the golf course? Do they have a monthly meeting? Are they meeting in an online forum or in a Facebook group for discussion? What publications—on and offline—target this group? Look, unless you know where to find your target audience, you’ll never be able to initiate contact with them.

That’s right; you’re going to initiate contact with them. Why? The answer is simple: Unless you contact them, you’ll never know what they want! (It’s okay; there’s really not much to it.)

Remember your first day at a new school? You didn’t where to go or what to do at first, so you started looking around to find someone who did—or who knew someone who did. Now, unless it’s a niche market that you’re familiar with, you’re going to be “the new kid on the block” in that group, just like you were that first day of school.

Once you find out where your market is, you’ve got to discover the answer to the next question: “What do they want (and what do I need to do to give it to them)?”

To find the answer, you’ve got to “take the plunge” and go where your market is. Your job is to discover what they love and what they hate; what pleases them and what turns them off… In short, you’ve got to know how your market thinks, feels and behaves in regard to their particular passion. To succeed in your endeavor, you’ve got to be able to understand them and what it’s like to be in their shoes.

This is the most important question of all. Without getting the correct answer to this one, you might as well give up on creating any product. You see, all of this effort is being directed toward achieving one particular goal, which is crucial to providing a successful product. I hinted at in the previous question. Based upon your diligent research to find the answers to each of the previous questions, you should be answer the one question that will give you what you need to create the best product for your niche market.

Here it is: “What is it that absolutely frustrates or aggravates them to the point that they practically lose sleep over it?” Simply stated, “What is the most pressing problem this group is experiencing that they are so passionate about getting resolved that they would buy a solution for it (in a heartbeat) if they knew it existed?” Once you’ve determined that answer, then you’re nearly ready to start creating that “killer product” for them.

However, there’s one final question related to the previous one, that if correctly answered, will give you the edge you need to create a product that your target audience will be starving for! Yes, it’s a good idea to find out where your market “itches” so that you can “scratch it,”, but you can go one better.

How? By asking them, “How do you want the solution to your most pressing problem designed?”

With this final piece of information you are now ready to create the best product possible for your target market. That will be the case because you will not only know what they want; you will have also discovered how they want you to give it to them!