When I first created my magazine, I put so much thought into the content, the layout, who I would interview, and the doors it would open for me within my career that I didn’t think about whether there was even a demand for what I was creating.
For me, the original goal was to go straight to print, and perhaps have a website to support the brand – it didn’t quite work out that way. As I began telling people about what I was creating I realized that they really seemed to connect more with the elements of the website, more than the actual printed product.
I’m old school and I prefer to turn the pages of a book or a magazine over accessing an electronic or digital version any day, but that isn’t the norm these days. This is a technology-driven society, and people love the convenience of being able to read and watch things online and on demand.
At the time I really hadn’t given too much thought to the concept of supply and demand. It was obvious people were reading, but the big question was what were they reading and how. Often, we become so passionate about our businesses that we can’t even imagine them being anything but necessary. This is really about need versus want. Does your business supply a need or a want – does it solve a problem?
If you sell vegetables people will most certainly patronize you because we need fruits and vegetables to be healthy. But what if you sell candles? The harsh reality is that the average person does not need this type of product. So you’ll have to do a bit more convincing. Perhaps your candles have calming properties. Someone will most certainly need your candles to relax after a long day of work. Now, you are a solution to a problem and you’ve converted want to need.
With polls or surveys, going out into the fields, focus groups, or simple research to see what people are buying, you can get some great guidance on what sells. Becoming familiar with supply and demand is important because obviously, you’re not selling to yourself.