Many of the things that I’ve assumed about what other people were thinking, feeling, or going to do were wrong. I’ve been both pleasantly surprised and deeply let down.
People are complex, and we can each have different reactions to the same experience. One member’s fabulous gala is another member’s small-talk-nightmare-from-hell.
We can’t be sure that members will love a new product or assume they won’t like the topic of an article or will register for a new event. Members cannot even tell you what they will think, feel, or do because even their assumptions about their future selves can be wildly inaccurate.
Sometimes it can be helpful to question what we think we know. Is there mythology about what your members like and what they don’t? What they’ll register for and what they won’t? Question these assumptions.
You may find there are dozens of possible thoughts or feelings that members could have, so which one is right? Don’t let assumptions lead you to put all your eggs in one basket. Keep trying lots of little experiments to see what works for which group of members.