Do You Know the 5 Most Powerful Words for Marketers?

by garyasanchez

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What's In It For Me? 







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Mayur Gala

The 5 most important words for any marketer are "What's in it for me?" If you can answer this simple question from the perspective of your prospects and customers, you’ll be far ahead of your peers who attempt to create marketing. Your customers don’t buy from you because they are madly in love and can’t get enough of your restaurant’s Cole slaw, your dental office’s Novocaine, or your auto repair shop’s grease. Nope, believe it or not, most of your customers don’t give a hoot about your products or services, except for in those moments when they need your products or services to help them.

  • “I want to remember the summer picnics when the family was smiling and laughing as we all ate hamburgers and grandma’s special Cole slaw.”  Don’t sell food, sell happy memories;
  • “I want to get rid of this damn pain in my mouth.”  Don’t sell medicine, sell pain relief;
  • “I want to get my car running again so I don’t have to beg my friend to borrow his extra car just to get to work every day.”  Don’t sell car repair, sell freedom and self-sufficiency. 

If you aren’t helping your customers solve their problems and helping them to achieve clearly articulated benefits, you’re just talking to yourself with your marketing.  “Features tell but benefits sell.”

A Handy Shorthand to Identify Your Products’ Benefits.

Do you know how to communicate the benefits your products offer your prospects and customers?  May I offer you one very easy to remember tip?  Whenever you write out or verbally state a description of what you are offering, always end the sentence with “… which means.”

For example, if I were to offer you “Invest $2,500 per month in Gary’s Done-For-You Email Marketing Services where I will write one email per week and send it to your customer list which means you can spend more time with your wife and kids at home because you won’t have to struggle hour after hour to figure out what to write in your customer emails because I’ll do that for you.” 

While many business owners would be happy to merely check the box on the to-do list for “send weekly email marketing”,  a much more powerful reason to offer is the ability to spend more time with the family, to be a more involved spouse and parent.   

Other examples:

  • “Buy our green chile cheeseburger that’s made with Hatch green chiles and Southwest Cheddar Cheese made in Clovis, NM which means you’ll eat uniquely New Mexican burgers that use authentic New Mexican ingredients;
  • Schedule an appointment to take advantage of our New Patient Special which includes x-rays, a basic cleaning, all for the low price of $59 which means you can attract strangers to you with your beaming smile;

Emotional Benefits are the Strongest

Emotion is the trigger that gets somebody from being a shopper to becoming a buyer.  If you can articulate a benefit that triggers a desired emotion within the shopper, you’re going to be much more successful selling than somebody who only focuses on the functionality (what it does) of a product or service.

So when you’re answering “What’s in it for me?”, try to answer with a benefit that triggers an emotion.  Saving time and saving money are two of the most common benefits marketers use to sell their products.  They are also very real and very tangible benefits.  But you’ll need to go at least one level deeper with these two benefits in order to tap emotions.  My earlier example of the Done-For-You email marketing services WILL certainly save a busy business owner time, but it’s what the owner gets to do with the time that’s truly important. 

Yellow Fishes, a marketing agency in India articulates the best categories of benefits that truly trigger emotions in most shoppers: 

  • Recognition  – Recognition can be in the form of being identified as “special” or even superior as in Tesla S owners are prestigious – not every person can afford to pay for such a luxury car and quantities are so limited you must know somebody in order to get one; or it could be being considered a role-model or standard as in “Choosy mothers choose Jif” – a “good” mother would naturally want the best for her children;
  • Belonging  – Apple has created a “cult” following around its more popular and advanced products such as the iPod and the iPhone.  For many, owning one of these Apple products signaled to others that you were part of the “in” crowd.
  • Confidence – Red Bull immediately comes to mind for me when I think of brands that conjure confidence.  If Red Bull can give me wings, I can take on most any challenge;
  • Individualism – I think back to an old David Ogilvy campaign from the early 1950’s for Hathaway Shirts (which ironically were mass produced dress shirts) that advertised the Man in the Hathaway Shirt who struck an individualistic pose while wearing an eyepatch;  

Hathaway shirt ad

  • Nostalgia  – Jingles and music in advertising can evoke precious memories.  In 2016, Miller beer brought back a classic jingle it used in its advertising the 1970’s.   If you were a fan of the cable TV series, Mad Men, you may also recall a powerful scene when Don Draper pitched a new campaign to Kodak that was all about tapping into nostalgia with a product he called the Carousel

Next time you sit down to write or evaluate a description of your products or services, put yourself in the shoes of your prospects and customers and ask yourself “What’s in it for me?”  As the marketer, if you cannot come up with an answer that promises an emotional benefit, keep working at it or ask your copywriter to keep working at it. 

I've got a fever

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