identify and understand your early customers
At the very beginning, your product won't get mass-market acceptance right away. This is why you have to find your early customers, which believe in your solution and have special needs.
Identify your Earlyvangelistst: customers who see the true potential of your product way ahead of others and possess the needed budget for a purchase.
By looking at the communalities among the Noncustomers of an industry, new and untasted market potential can be found.
Customer Interviews are one of the (if not the) most effective means to get to know your customers. Most of the time, a handful is enough.
Empathy maps are used to understand the users needs and are well known in the field of user centric design.
Customer personas help you understand your customers and get a shared understanding of the needs, likes and characteristics of target customers.
In B2B but also complex B2C sales, it's worth taking a look at all the peoples/ roles involved in the buying process - here the Buying Cycle can help.
The online tool from Google helps you to identify which channel influences your target customer the most along his decision process.
Analysisng the Users Journey and the happyness along his Journey (including the buying process) helps you to uncover unmet customer value.
The tool from the Business Model Canvas founders helps you to understand your customers. Further it helps you to priotize, analyse and align product features.
A methodology to understand your customers problems by letting them prototype their desired product and promote it in front of other customers.
Watch this YouTube video to get started with the jobs-to-be-done concept and understand how to design a product which matches customer needs.