I don’t buy clothes, I buy style and sense of enhanced self image. I don’t buy a car, I buy safety and financial balance. I don’t buy books, and buy value in my future and a bigger paycheck.
Confused? You shouldn’t be. While you may walk away from a store with a physical product in a nicely designed plastic bag, you’re not really buying the hunk of material that many companies are marketing. What you’re actually buying is a better and brighter future for yourself and those you share these products with, and the benefits that accompany them.
Why does this matter? Well, if you’re in marketing or sales it matters a whole hell of a lot. The better you can speak directly to the brighter futures of your target audience, the easier it will be to A.) Stand out from a crowded marketplace B.) Sell your ‘stuff’, and C.) Get people to tell their friends about the ‘stuff’ you’re selling.
Apple is an easy, well-known example of taking this concept and putting it into action like it’s no ones business. They don’t sell computer hardware and cool tech gadgets…although I’m sure plenty of people would argue that. What they actually sell is a cooler self-image and a sense of being a part of something bigger than themselves. Their customers, not excluding me, are a part of a culture and movement in the world of technology. It’s cool, wanna buy some? Millions of people have answered that question with a resounding ‘YES’!
TAKE ACTION: At the top of a sheet of paper (or a digital doc), write down the product/service you market and sell. Then below that start writing all the cool ‘brighter future’ things your customers receive by purchasing with you. From this, hopefully lengthy list, you can then start to branching off each ‘brighter future’ category and list what features allow your customers to achieve those things. Lead with the brighter future, connect the dots with features (the how).