You’ve probably heard this phrase before, but think about it; people don’t buy features they buy benefits. In other words, they buy the sizzle not the sausage.

How many of you can think back to the old Danish bacon adverts on TV? Can you picture the bacon sizzling in the pan? You could almost taste the bacon and smell the aroma wafting from the pan… Danishhhhhhhhhhh. It was the smell, the tasty cooked breakfast – quite literally, the sizzle they were selling.

In short… feature = dead pig, benefit = delicious breakfast – which one are you buying? (Apologies to any veggies reading this, but you get my point).

All too often business owners waste time, effort and money pushing feature after feature of their product or service and… you guessed it, the potential customers don’t care.

There’s an assumption that would-be clients will understand why they should buy the product or service just because they’ve been told about it. Thus, many business owners only communicate the features of their product or service to prospective customers and neglect to mention the benefits.

What they really care about is… what’s in it for them?

People purchase based on the benefits. What will they get from your product or service? How will they feel, what will they save and so on.

Take a look at your collateral materials and your web site. If you’re a “feature basher”, your work consists of flyers, letterhead, ads and a website all of which have your logo and company name, a list of things you do or the “features” of your products or service and your phone number. Are you surprised that no one cares enough to respond?

They don’t want you or your products: they want to know what you and your products or service can do for them!

This is often very difficult for many people to get to grips with. Here’s a very simple method of uncovering the benefit over the feature, try this;

Which means that…” after you state any feature, let me give you an example.

Our long wheel base cars have extra leg room (feature, who cares?)… which means that your beautiful wedding dress will look as wonderful when you get out of the car as it did when you stepped in, (benefit) – that’s what the bride is buying!

Can you tell your features from your benefits? As a good rule for marketing, no feature should be mentioned without the back up and reinforcement of a benefit statement. Here’s the really great news – you can stack up dozens of benefits for every feature!

This applies to conversations with clients, your advertising, and your website – everything that’s going to touch a client or a prospect.

So you may need to change your entire mindset. Put yourself in your customer’s shoes, see their problems, understand their fears, learn their wants and needs, and then provide the solution to them by way of benefits. That way you can stop selling and let people buy from you.

Take the time to understand your customers, and show them you understand what they want… and watch your sales shoot through the roof.