Do your eyes glaze over when you think, “Oh no – another article about features and benefits?”
Or do you think, “I’ve already written my ebook and designed my workshop. I’m not sure I can identify the benefits.”
Features and Benefits (F&B) are the building blocks of copywriting and content creation. But they’re not just for writing copy. You can also use your F&B analysis to develop your brand and implement your strategy.
First, a quick review.
Benefits are the reason your client buys your product or service. They almost always include an emotional component. Examples include a fulfilling career, tax forms completed accurately with no payment due, or a dog who doesn’t jump on strangers or bark inappropriately.
Features are the way you deliver the benefits, such as your 7-step proven coaching system, your positive dog training, or your 20 years of accounting experience. We tend to say that people buy based on benefits, but the truth is that some experienced buyers look for features because they know how to translate them into benefits.
Branding: Remember that your brand is not a logo. It’s a set of expectations that you manage. Your brand can be based on a benefit or series of benefits that you deliver. A classic example is the pizza delivery in one hour (when it was new and legal) or FedEx’s promise of overnight delivery. FedEx’s promise wasn’t just about speed of delivery: the emotional component was peace of mind because you knew exactly where that package was.
Alternatively, you can brand based on methods.
A lot of dog trainers promise to get your dog to stop chewing and barking. But dog owners will resonate to training methods that are fast and simple.
Many coaches promise to help with career transitions, but a 7-step method that doesn’t include tests and that’s tailored to people over 50 might be a strong basis for branding.
Strategy: In almost every online marketing forum (especially for newbies), I see questions like, “Here’s my idea. Do you think people will want it?”
Usually you get responses like, “How the hell should I know?” (especially if the product is targeted to people outside the forum).
A better way: Start writing the sales letter for the product or service. As you write, you will realize the gaps in your market analysis. If you haven’t considered the benefits, you won’t be able to write a convincing sales letter. If you haven’t developed the features, you’ll have a lot of fluffy promises that nobody will believe.
Finally, after you’ve written the sales letter, you can ask yourself this question: “Are the product’s F&B consistent with my brand’s F&B?” That’s a little more challenging, but well worth the effort.
Do you have my copywriting guide – Your 21-Point Extreme Copy Makeover? It’s free – and it’s so comprehensive it’s like a mini-copywriting course. Click here.
If you’d like to discuss your own features, benefits, brand and strategy, I’ve got three consulting options to get started: Click here to see which program works best for you.