When I first heard about the benefits vs. features distinction, I was frustrated. At the time I just had my career consulting website. What, I asked, are the benefits I can offer? I couldn’t promise anyone would get a job, let alone a dream job.
I asked an experienced marketer for help. She shrugged off the question: “More, better, faster, cheaper… that’s all you need.”
I escaped, vowing I’d never utter the words “sales letter” ever again.
Of course, I eventually realized this marketer got it all wrong. She probably scared away a lot of people. The truth is, benefits should be credible, realistic and beefy.
(1) Focus on your prospect’s trouble spot.
When I work with clients, I’ll often ask, “What do your clients want? Why do they hire you?”
Usually they say things like, “good relationships,” “healthy meals they can cook easily,” or “a satisfying career.”
That’s a good start. But to identify benefits, you have to dig deeper. What’s keeping them from achieving those goals?
For instance, the people who want loving relationships might be stuck because they keep attracting prospective partners who are boring, broke and self-centered. The people who want healthy food could be too busy to get to the grocery store OR too intimidated by recipes with a long list of ingredients.
Now you’re ready to create benefits because you can help them over these obstacles.
(2) Don’t settle for generic benefits.
What’s your secret for getting those busy executives into a grocery store and eventually their own kitchens? How do you teach people to attract prospective partners they can enjoy, so they end a cycle of miserable dates?
“You’ll end overwhelm” or, “You’ll meet your soulmate” are great benefits – but a lot of people promise to deliver them. What do you do that’s different?
(3) Go for the heart and the mind of your prospects.
To reach your prospects, your benefits have to touch their emotions as well as their minds. In his recent book, To Sell Is Human, Daniel Pink emphasizes the need to assess what your prospect is thinking as well as what she or he is feeling. See http://budurl.com/pinkonselling
Therefore, you can ask, “What emotions will your clients experience after they work with you? And how valuable are the outcomes you provide, as they consider the return on their investment?”
When you begin designing your program, you will save time when you begin with a list of benefits you will be offering your clients and customers at each stage. You’ll then know how to structure your program and your marketing materials will practically write themselves.ll
If you’d like me to give you a one-to-one customized video tutorial on your own sales letter, check out http://budurl.com/yourtweak