“The traditional business definition of marketing is identifying and fulfilling customer needs. There’s no mention of your business. Marketing is all about the customer.” Heidi Richards Mooney
Do you remember the “WIIFM” formula when designing your promotional tools? You know, the “what’s in it for me?” The “me in this case is not about you, your company, your product or business, rather it is about the customer, the prospect, the reader, the person you are trying to get to take action regarding your product or service.
How many times have you picked up a brochure about a company to find out what they can do for you only to find it filled with stuff about them? And have little or no idea what they can do for you? Your customers and prospects could be asking the same question.
One of the biggest mistakes many companies make is to talk about themselves and their products rather than talking about the CUSTOMER and what he/she will gain by doing business with them. “The traditional business definition of marketing is “identifying and fulfilling customer needs.” There’s no mention of your business. Marketing is all about the customer.”
Identify and focus on the benefits. Prospects want to know how what you offer will benefit them. You MUST make it clear what benefits the prospect will receive from doing business with you, otherwise then there is no reason for that prospect to do so. You MUST focus on what the prospect is going to GAIN by using your product or service.
In order to articulate the “what’s in it for them,” you must first understand the difference between a feature and a benefit. A feature is something that your product does or has (for example, a shirt can be 100% cotton). A benefit to 100% cotton could be durability, easy-care or even wrinkle resistant. Now you’ve given them the WIIFM. Why the prospect might want to purchase the shirt.
Count how many times you refer to you – that includes the “I,” the “WE” and your “company name.” Take a second look and count how many times you refer to the “YOU,” the “prospect/customer” or “she/he.” If your copy has more than 50% “I,” etc. take a look at how you can reword it to tip the scales in favor of the prospect. Good copy should be at least 60-75% prospect focused and only 25-40% focused on who you are, (such as the awards you have, the color of your building, the type of equipment you have, etc.).
To change things around in your marketing message whether it is in your proposal writing, brochures or your website (any advertising), you must identify the goals, objectives and obstacles of your prospect. Then you show your prospects how you can help them reach their goals and overcome their obstacles.
Once you know how your business benefits your customers, and you begin to focus on the how the customer benefits formula, you can write copy that will increase prospect response. You will begin seeing a greater response to your marketing messages and your bottom line!
Note: There are 42 “You’s” in this article and only 2 “I’s.” Did it get your attention?