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The True Art of Selling

​Sell Benefits, Not Features

6Feb

It is surprising how many business owners forget that one of the basic principles of Marketing 101 is that product or service benefits always sell better than actual features. This is because consumers respond better to interactive sales pitches that specifically demonstrate how the item will deliver personal benefits. Consumers typically do not respond well to aggressive sales pitches that only talk about a product or service’s fascinating features. Bear in mind that consumers purchase prodcuts to improve the quality of their lives, so companies that successfully sell benefits will experience higher levels of revenue and customer engagement.

Psychological Comfort

One of the most powerful ways to sell benefits is through emotionally motivating consumers to purchase the products and services. This means that consumers receive psychological benefits, such as a sense of security. Almost all insurance companies use the phrase 'peace-of-mind' in their marketing materials. There are many products or services that can offer peace of mind, such as an extended warranty or home security system. Even food offers comfort because companies like foodstorage focus on selling the peace of mind that comes with being prepared for disasters.

Efficiency

Some companies are obsessed with efficiency and implement complex quality and improvement programs. They use their efficient processes as selling points with customers, which helps within the customer service industry. Other companies offer solutions that increase efficiency. For instance, pnmsoft offers technological solutions to increase business productivity. Their main feature is a software program that maps out business processes. They do not focus on the functionality, but instead expound on the benefits of being able to work more efficiently and better supervise projects from start to finish.

Competency

It is sometimes hard to sell the intangible benefits of tangible training and education. One company in particular, shapironegotiations, offers employee-based training services. Their selling point is that employees will become better at working with people, which will increase revenue and productivity. These experiential benefits are best demonstrated through past participant testimonials and statistics that illustrate increased levels of sales, output and employee engagement. Broad benefits like employee competency need specific numbers and outcomes.

Accessibility

Many companies are converting to cloud-based solutions because it offers universal access across multiple devices around the clock. Consumers now expect user-friendly, highly functional technology solutions. An example of this is novarad, which sells health care-based solutions through focusing on the peace of mind that providers and patients receive from being able to easily access their confidential information. Any business that offers technological solutions should focus on selling confidence and convenience.

Potential

Some products and services offer consumers excellent potential. To illustrate, when Apple originally entered the MP3 player market, competition had been already fiercely established. However, Apple presented their iPod based on what customers could do with it, such as being able to store and listen to 1,000 songs and simple, no fuss access. They did not, like the competition, just focus on the technical details and the storage sizes. Apple understood all too well that features must be translated into personalized benefits. As a result, the iPod quickly became one of the most popular MP3 players because consumers associate the product with their personal music selection and preferences.

Features vs. Results

Technology based products and services are easily presented in terms of their results. This may appear in the form of the CPU processing capability or how the speed dial feature on the phone saves time and reduces the risks of misdialing. Major technology companies like Google and Microsoft market their solutions based on the benefits of inter-connectivity and cross-platform functionality, which increases productivity and time savings. Other tangible products may need creative thinking and chain reaction like problem solving. This means that higher quality mattresses translates to better sleep, which results in better quality of life.

In closing, be sure to base desired features on primary marketing sources, such as consumer surveys and demographic and psychographic information.

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