When writing text for a company’s products, clearly communicate the value and benefits of a product. Figure out what the benefits and advantages really are, and don’t just creatively describe the features as given to you by the company’s engineers. Most copywriters and marketers don’t differentiate between features, benefits and advantages because it’s like pulling teeth to figure out why a customer needs a product and why they should buy it. Yes, it takes time to think that out, but think how long it took to design and develop the product – and the marketing of the product is just as important as the product itself, so it needs proper marketing effort for the product to sell.
The difference between the features, benefits and advantages:
A Feature is the function of a product – specifically what it can do.
A Benefit is why a product’s feature is desired, needed or a good thing.
An Advantage is why someone should buy the product and why it is a better choice than the competition.
Here’s a simple example of using the above definitions:
Feature: This kayak is made out of hardened fiberglass
Benefit: So it won’t ever leak or break
Advantage: Meaning you can take on more extreme rapids than ever before
So many times I see the features of a product called a benefit, and or features mixed in with benefits and written under the heading of benefits. Clearly communicate the differences between a Feature, Benefit and an Advantage – and let the follow-up info for responses to inquiries be used to fill in additional information on the features. Give customers a reason the product is needed and is better value than the competition’s product.
A 2016 Pulitzer Prize Winning photo. Take a close look at this image; check out the expression of the two men in the front of the boat, kids waving their clothes, two men trying to keep the boat for capsizing and especially the lighting and composition – it tells a story, truly a picture that speaks a thousand words. Congratulations to Sergey Ponomarev of the New York Times.
(If you ever think your day sucks, trade places with them). Caption to the photo: Migrants arrive by a Turkish boat near the village of Skala, on the Greek island of Lesbos. The Turkish boat owner delivered some 150 people to the Greek coast and tried to escape back to Turkey; he was arrested in Turkish waters. The New York Times – November 16, 2015.
Sony’s ad is slick and well produced, but does it communicate its value to the consumer? No! When I watched the commercial, the main actor looks like a hit-man stalking a ballerina and getting ready to take her out. When the video shows a single ballerina dancing in the darkness be tracked by a phone-type device and the voice over asks, “Can you feel it — the power — all in your hands — trust the power”, I realized it wasn’t just a phone but a targeting device for a drone. Does the Sony Xperia have more advanced and useful technology than the iPhone? How would I know from that commercial?
Sony mentions these two features; curved glass and seamless metal. Ok, so show me – I didn’t see anything curved and was the closeup of a metal rectangle rising up from a brushed steel plate the high tech-desk of the hit man or his phone? And Sony never did tell me why those two features have value to me. The art direction of the ad is so overproduced with effects, that I don’t know what the Sony phone’s camera can or can’t do. It seems it can shoot a ballerina jumping in midair and cowboys riding on horses, but what percentage of their target audience is shooting ballerinas and horses? And what about all the other video effects in the ad, can it do those too? Sony creatives need to take a lesson from Apple and focus on the value to the user of what makes their phone useful and how it can improve their customer’s life experiences. Sony, listen up, you are not selling beer where you can get all creative and sell just your phone’s image, but you need to create an emotional connection with your customers that communicates how your phone can change people’s lives.
The New Year marks a time for reflecting on the past year and contemplating what we learned from the last 365 days to make the coming year even better. Yes, it’s a time to celebrate past success, but it’s also a time for bold moves and fresh starts. It’s a time for dreams and friendships both old and new. It’s an opportune time to raise a toast to those who share your business success and those who cherish your personal happiness and hopes for the future.
The New Year marks a new beginning. New people to meet, new adventures to enjoy, and new memories to create. Here’s wishing you the gift of peace and prosperity throughout 2016, and wishing you a Happy New Year!
If you do not start somewhere, you will be nowhere. In order to get business, you need to get out and meet people and push your comfort zones. You need to form relationships with people outside of your immediate influence and industry. Join organizations whose members are business owners and senior people in organizations – as they are your potential new clients.
You aren’t going to be building much of a business if the only people you know are those you are meeting through work. You must get out and meet people outside of work. This means going to events where people in your profession are networking for business are likely to be present, but it also means going to events where you are likely to stand out because you are one of the few who do what you do.
There are hundreds of potential social situations you can inject yourself into. It’s important that you get involved in as many social situations outside of work as you possibly can. This networking will give you the ability to meet new people and connect. These people may have the ability to refer relationships to you, or they may not. If you do not start to form relationships, however, then you will not be someone who can get business in the first place. Get out and form relationships!