Getting new clients and retaining old ones is the lifeblood of every business. Every business markets its product or service in one way or another, but some do it better than others. So what is the mistake that so many business owners make? They talk about features rather than benefits.

Features pertain to a characteristic of a product or service.

For example, you describe a pair of boots as waterproof. That is a feature. Other features might include color, size, weight, material and tangible qualities.

On the other hand, benefits explain what the buyer will gain by using those boots.

In this case, the benefit would be to keep your feet warm and dry. A benefit answers the question ‘so what?’ or ‘why should I care?’

So why is it important to distinguish a feature from a benefit? Because a common marketing mistake involves detailing all the features of a product or service but failing to emphasize or highlight the benefits that it offers.

Why is this a mistake? Because features are not what eventually motivates a person to purchase a product or a service.  The benefits do.

The most important question a potential customer asks themselves before making a decision is “what’s in it for me?” Before they decide to purchase your product or service, they will think about what can be gained from the purchase.

Will it save them time, energy or money?  Will it make their life easier? Will they gain freedom from something?  Will they generate more revenue?  Your benefits should address these types of questions.

Marketing your product or service more effectively

Successful marketing entails you to show your prospects how your product or service can fill a need. Below are a few tips on how you can market your product or service by highlighting the benefits:

#1 – Know your product or service well

Be knowledgeable on how your product or service can help your prospects. Analyze your product or service and identify what factors will get your target market’s attention. This will enable you to answer any question someone might ask and relate it to a particular benefit.

#2 – Understand the needs of your target market

The key to effectively marketing the benefits of your product or service is to view things from the point of view of your prospects. Put yourself in their shoes. Think like a buyer and not as a seller.  Make sure you have buyer personas for each of your ideal clients.

#3 – Match the benefits of your product or service with the needs of your prospects

Do your homework and find out how a specific benefit of your product or service can solve a particular need of your prospect. The benefits of your product or service will be rendered useless if it does not address any need, concern or problem of your prospects.

If you are unsure, conduct a survey of your current and past clients for insight on the problems they were facing, and how you solved them.

#4 – Quantify the benefits of your product or service

Use hard numbers to explain how your product or service can be cost-efficient and/or time-efficient. Make your prospects aware that you will save them money and/or valuable time in the long run

# 5 – Show them proof

Explain to your prospects (using testimonials) how others have actually benefited from your product or service. Nothing motivates a person more than the knowledge that others have tried your product or service and are satisfied with the results.

Have more questions about communicating features and benefits? Leave a comment below and we’ll be sure to respond!

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