An old friend emailed us a great article from Daniel Jacobs, Focus on People, Not Products, whose main points struck a cord with us, especially since our latest newletter was titled It's About the People, Not the Product. We immediately saw several examples that backup Jacobs' main points:
- You're not selling what people want to buy.
- People don't buy products ' they buy the benefit.
- Focus on the Why, not the What
If you're not consistently close the sales numbers you'd like to see, it's due to one thing: you're not selling what people want to buy. If you think you are selling a product or a service, you're missing the boat.
Example: Dave McClure, a well-known investor and founder of 500 startups who spoke at ZURBsoapbox, talked about why 50% to 75% of all his investments fail. He said those companies that fell into that 50%-to-75% bucket ran out of money without having any material outcome. Most of the time, the money ran out because those entrepreneurs made something people might want, but do not need, Dave said.
If you can't answer this question: Why are they buying? Then you haven't really contacted that individual. They want to buy a benefit, so exactly what benefit will your product or service be to them? A benefit is something that provides an improvement in a condition, promotes and enhances well-being. It helps assist someone to obtain some desired advantage or position. You have to find out what they personally consider to be a benefit.
Example: Greg DeVore wrote a great article on a GarageBand iPad app he recently bought. Even though the iPad version of Garageband has a fraction of the features the full software package has, the app made his son feel like a rockstar at creating music. The creators of this app did not care about what the software could do, as DeVore points out, but rather what benefit the software brings to the people.
If your selling methods align with why the people want to buy ' rather than what you've got to sell ' then you'll both be working toward the same goal for a change. Focus on the people and why they are buying. This factor is always more important than what product you are selling.
Example: Best example of this would have to be the one brought up by Simon Sinek in his book "The Power of Why." Most of us tell others what our product does and how it does it then expect others to buy our product. This does not work. What Simon has learned is that every inspiring leader from Martin Luther King to companies like Apple talk, think and communicate the same way (completely opposite to everyone else). They start with 'Why'. We have outlined the complete example in our post here.