The Journey to Better Marketing: Benefits vs. Features

The basis of capitalism is “the individual will do what’s good for the individual.” When you consider marketing your product or service, you need to consider it from your customers’ perspectives. What’s in it for them?

If you talk about how cold your refrigerator is, you’re talking about a feature. The refrigerator is cold. So what? What does that mean to your customer? The refrigerator will keep food fresher longer because of its cold temperature. The feature is “cold;” the benefit is “fresher food.” Too many businesses list features and think they are benefits.

A feature is not a benefit. A benefit explains how a product or service will make the consumers’ lives better, and just because it’s a benefit for you, doesn’t mean it’s a benefit for someone else. The most compelling benefits are emotional or financial.

A competitive advantage is a special kind of benefit. It is one that is unique to you or it is something that only you talk about. It’s a benefit that gets the buyer’s attention, sells your product, keeps customers coming back, and causes people to talk about your product. The right competitive advantage buries your competition and should become the focus of your overall marketing plan.

Adapted from “Guerrilla Maketing in 30 days.”