If you want to sell products or services, you have to recognize the difference between features vs benefits.
Focusing upon the benefits of a product or service must be the foundation of any small business advertising campaign. Marketing messages that sell will always focus on the benefits instead of the features.
What’s the difference between features vs benefits
- we provide human resources and administrative services
Features tell. They describe the product or service.
On the other hand, a benefit is the positive impact your product or service makes on your customer. A few examples of benefits are:
- Improve Productivity, Get Better Health Benefits, Reduce Liability & Admin Tasks.
- Time-Saving HR Services & Technology
- So You Can Focus on Growing Your Business.
Features Tell – Benefits Sell
Sales trainers teach aspiring sales people, “Features tell – while benefits sell.” The key to closing sales is to focus upon benefits instead of features. The same is true for your marketing content.
Creating content that focuses on the benefits of a product may be the most difficult part about content marketing.
Unfortunately, many small business owners who need help with advertising look to the what the multinational companies are doing for inspiration. It’s so tough to tell the difference between features and benefits, even pros can get it wrong! For example, I noticed this error on the copy on a box of facial cleansing wipes. This is the product of a Fortune 500 company. On the box is printed the word “benefits.” Unfortunately, those “benefits” are clearly features.
Here’s the copy from the box:
4 Benefits in Every Cloth
There’s a HUGE problem with this list. These are all features – not benefits. Cleansing, exfoliating, toning and hydrating are all FEATURES. Despite the label, these are not benefits of using these cleansing wipes.
Do consumers know the benefits of each of those features? The company’s copywriters think so.
In our busy, crowded, hectic, stress filled world, it’s always better to guide the consumer through the benefit process.
The Why Behind the Buy:
Since the list above is not a list of “benefits” – let’s see what the benefits of these wipes offer.
The benefits of the cleansing wipes might include:
- Younger looking skin
- A radiant, youthful glow
- Smoother, firmer skin
- A more beautiful you.
FEATURES describe the wipes and what they do. They clean your skin, they exfoliate, they tone and they hydrate.
BENEFITS describe why the list of features above should matter to the consumer.
Women who purchase this product aren’t buying the features listed. They’re “buying” is younger, better looking skin.
What benefits are your customers buying?
The difference between features and benefits is the key to making your product stand out on the market. If you want people buy what you’re selling, let them know about its amazing BENEFITS! Focus upon the telling how much better their lives will be once they buy your amazing, incredible product. Paint a picture of what their life COULD look like – if only they would purchase your product or service.
I had a client who blew me away when I gave her this assignment. She was a therapist and her “product” was a couple’s retreat. The target market wasn’t couples whose marriages/unions were in trouble, but rather those who wanted to make a good relationship great. I’ve got to tell you, that’s a HARD sell. It’s a lot “easier” to sell “stop your divorce.”
So how do you motivate couples who have a good relationship but want to make it better? You paint a compelling word picture. Here’s something along the lines of what she wrote:
Are you anxious to get home from work each night because you’re eager to spend time with your partner/spouse?
This would definitely be considered a BENEFIT of attending this couple’s retreat. Notice, this doesn’t tell you anything about the techniques or methods she uses to get this result. Those would be the FEATURES of the retreat. Instead, this focused on the BENEFIT you would reap after attending the retreat.
So before you create your next social media post, take a moment and ask the most important business question of all: WHY?
Why should someone buy from you. How will doing business with you BENEFIT them? Start focusing on the benefits vs the features of your product or service.