Rank Xerox taught me many things. As a young salesperson, they put me through their famous sales training programme. Subsequently, I was mentored as I found my feet in the world of sales.
They firmly believed in the effectiveness of selling benefits. We were trained to ask questions and focus on benefits that were relevant to the customer. It sounds simple enough, doesn’t it?
Interestingly, I continually come across examples of enterprises that do the opposite. All they seem to talk about is what they do, how they do it and how great they are.
Here is a quick exercise for you. Write a vertical list of all of the features that you can think of for a product or service that you are marketing.
Against each feature, write at least one benefit and preferably two or three, remembering that a real benefit exists in the customer’s mind, not just in your mind.
Now look at your sales and marketing collateral (web pages, emails, PDFs, adverts, printed matter if you have it, etc) and look for benefits. Are they there? Are they used in headlines and subheads? Do you bring the benefits to life with customer stories that describe the benefits that your customers are receiving?