As a partner in a marketing firm, I spend time with my clients finding out what matters to their clients. You might have the best product on the market at the best price, but if people don't understand how it directly benefits them, your product won't sell. Many business owners get confused over this simple point. They believe their marketing language should cover information about the product. While information serves to inform people, it does not always appeal to their need for a solution. Here's an example…
My client (Sarah) recently set up shop next door to a natural foods store to offer sessions in a specific type of sauna designed to release toxins from the body very quickly. She actually rented her office space from the natural foods store with the understanding the owner would encourage his customers to sign up for saunas.
After a couple months, Sarah was not getting the business she had expected. The store owner suggested she offer the first session free. Sarah and her technician created postcards with the free offer for the store owner to give away. The response was minimal. Sarah brought me a sample of the postcard and asked for advice.
The first thing I noticed about the postcard, was although it was beautifully designed, there was nothing on it that would compel a person to want to try the sauna, even for free. It did not mention what the benefits are for that type of sauna; only that it is for detoxification.
I suggested to Sarah that the word, "detoxification" might not have meaning for people. It was meaningful to her because she had many years of experience in the field of natural health care. I shared with her that she needed to get "inside the heads" of the people that would be candidates for her service and find out what mattered to them. In other words, she needed to add some bold bullet points to the postcards that described the direct benefits people would have from using the sauna.
Together, Sarah and I did some brainstorming and then we contacted some of her clients that regularly used her sauna to get their feedback. We came up with some great marketing language, including that after sessions in the sauna, people experienced more energy, a more cheerful disposition, loss of addictive behavior, the ability to think more clearly and reduction of pain caused by inflammation.
When Sarah took her new postcard design to be printed, she also had posters printed with the same information. People entering the natural foods store noticed the posters and asked for the postcards.
Now Sarah's business is booming. All it took was a shift in perspective for her marketing efforts. Once she appealed to her clients' needs rather than describing her own knowledge, her appointment book filled up with paying customers.
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