Focus On Benefits to Get Sales

Concentrate on the benefits of your service or product to your customer instead of the features. Presenting the results before the features of your business can attract more customers and increase sales.

Marketing is a crucial ingredient to a successful home business. If you’ve created a business and marketing plan, you’ve probably listed all the great features of your products and services, and identified what makes you different from the competition. However, if those aspects are what you’re marketing, you may not be getting the results you want. The reality is that when it comes to marketing, it’s not about you. The market doesn’t care about how great you are. It cares about how your greatness can fill a need. This means you need to translate your features into benefits. Here’s how:

1. List Your Product or Service's Features

I know I said that consumers don’t care about your features, but you can’t create a benefit without connecting it to a feature. What’s a feature? Features are the characteristics of what you’re selling. If it’s a product it might include size, color, or shape. A service feature might include speed or quality. Pay special attention to features that set you apart from the competition.

2. What Do Your Features Mean for Your Customer? Pretend you’re the customer and ask “So what?” about each of your features. Consider why your customers are buying from you. What do they want or need? For example, if the market need is quick service, your feature should be that your service is fast. The benefit, therefore, is that customers can get whatever they need done, done today. Following are some more examples:

Market Need: Weight loss for new moms after having a baby.
Feature: A safe and effective diet.
Benefit: Your customer will look sexy and have more energy without compromising their health.

However, if the market need for the diet product is people who have health issues related to weight, the benefit is different. Notice that the feature is the same as above for new moms who want to lose baby weight.

Market Need: Weight loss to improve health for men and women.
Feature: A safe and effective diet.
Benefit: Your customers will improve their health, live longer and have a higher quality of life.

While the features are the same (a safe and effective diet), the market needs are different, and therefore the benefits are different. The new moms are more concerned with getting back to their normal weight than improving their general health, so the benefits cater to their appearance. Conversely, the weight loss for the second market need is to improve health, so the benefits cater to a higher quality of life.

In essence, marketing messages need to move from being business-centered to customer-focused. You’re not selling you; you’re selling a solution.

3. Develop Your Marketing Strategies Using Benefits Instead of Features

If you provide features, include a translation that helps the consumer understand how the features will help him. For example, I have a book that lists hundreds of work resources, which I mention in the book’s description. But I go a step further and after mentioning the list (feature), I include a statement that says, “So you can start applying for jobs today.” My buyers don’t care about a list as much as they care about applying and getting a job.

Theodore Levitt, a former Harvard professor and economist, famously said, “People don’t want to buy a quarter-inch drill, they want a quarter-inch hole.” Marketing is a waste of time if you’re not focused on what your market needs. When marketing, sell the hole, not the drill.

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