Do you know what you’re REALLY selling before you write about it?

really selling,writing,Tsufit,blogging,writing

They know what they’re selling–sex.

Heaven forbid that I should harp on about the old features and benefits  number again, but something I read in my fellow Canadian, Toronto-based **Tsufit’s latest email has made me take a look at this issue in a different way.

In Tsufit’s excellent article, which is the 7th installment in her 11 part series, Secrets From The Spotlight!: “How To Attract New Clients in Just 30 Seconds,” she proclaims, “You gotta know what you’re selling! It’s no coincidence that many of the car companies put models on the hood of their cars. They know what they’re selling–sex. And they don’t need the models to do it.”

“Ask yourself,” she continues. “What are you really selling? Escape? Youth? Fun? Hope? Relief? Comfort? Security? Freedom? If you don’t know what you’re selling, how can you sell it? Once you have the right WHAT, the HOW is EASY.”

In Tsufit’s case she was talking about major corporates – a car manufacturer and later in the article, a beer company. And that got me thinking about applying the same principle to micro, small and medium sized businesses, too.

Is there any reason why we shouldn’t be appealing to clients’ and customers’ slightly more basic instincts, like the huge FMCG and other giants do?

So what am I really selling to my blog writing prospects?

First (being vain and self-centered) I thought of my own offering when I attend F-2-F networking events and have to do the 45 second “I help people…” what I do speech, a.k.a. the Elevator Speech. What I usually mumble between bites of bacon and eggs is something about being a business blogger, and helping other people get ideas for their blogs through 1-on-1 coaching and workshops.

But now Tsufit’s words are ringing in my ears and I think, no – that’s not what I’m really selling. After all it was probably back in the 1950’s that someone in the advertising world said “don’t sell the sausage: sell the sizzle in the sausage.” And looking at my particular sausage, it wasn’t sizzling much.

So I hope Tsufit would agree with me here that what I’m actually selling, is not help to get ideas for your business blog, but…

Creative lightbulb moments….

Really selling,writing,blogging,sales,selling…lightbulb moments that open up my clients’ own creativity so their ideas start flowing freely, and continue
to do so for a long time.

OK, enough about me: what are others really selling?

Let’s look at what some other small businesses and professional services might really be selling.

Law firm – priceless protection and security

Accountant – peace of mind, no tax worries

Electrical contractor – safety from injury and even fire

really selling,writing,hairdressing,blogging

Hairdresser: making you feel great

Hairdresser – making you feel great

Logistics/transport company – no more let-downs on delivery

Yoga teacher – stress relief that works

Computer repair service – no more frustration when your IT stops working

Holiday/travel agency – taking you safely to your dreams

…and so-on.

How to figure out what you’re really selling

Here I go again with my features and benefits argument: features are what something is, benefits are what it does for you. Now track back from the benefits and look at what basic needs, fear and problems your typical client or customer has, and work on how you really  solve those. For example:

Law firm – priceless protection and security – fear of being cheated or prosecuted

Accountant – peace of mind, no tax worries – fear of getting into trouble with the tax man

Electrical contractor – safety from injury and even fire – fear of getting hurt

Hairdresser – making you feel great – need something to perk me up

Logistics/transport company – no more let-downs on delivery – embarrassment when deliveries go wrong or goods arrive damaged

Yoga teacher – stress relief that lasts – need to get away from my problems, job, kids, etc

Computer repair service – no more frustration when your IT stops working – when my IT dies I feel like I’ve had a leg cut off

Holiday/travel agency – taking you safely to your dreams – planning a holiday or short break is something to look forward to

blog,writing,news,blogging,Suzan St Maur,HowToWriteBetter.net,How To Write BetterHave you ever sat down and wondered what it is you’re really selling?

Please share your views!

And thanks to Tsufit for inspiring this article.

**Tsufit coaches lawyers, entrepreneurs, experts, keynote speakers, professionals and authors to captivate their audiences. You can buy her book, “Step Into The Spotlight,” in the USA here, in the UK here, in Canada here, and on other Amazons. Want to find out more? Contact her office at support@tsufit.comQuote © Tsufit 2006-2014

photo credit: loop_oh via photopin cc
photo credit: colinlogan via photopin cc

 

 

m4s0n501

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  1. Suzan,

    Another excellent post — and ties into what I did this weekend. I redid the slogan for my website and had to take a serious look at what I have been doing for others. So far, everyone I have talked to likes it. So I think I nailed it. lol

    I really enjoy the part where you tell us how to figure out what we are really selling. Focusing on your audience is the most important thing. Without that, you have no business!

    And yes, it’s about emotions! As I always say, if you want to make money, even with a blog, you have to provide customer service 24/7.

    Thank you for this, Suzan!
    Cendrine Marrouat recently posted..3 types of marketers who fail at social mediaMy Profile

  2. Tsufit, who I know well, would applaud you for your new “elevator pitch”. I have sat near her at many networking events and she starts off speaking quietly and monosyllabically (basically putting people to sleep) then she speaks full of energy and gets our attention with what she says and how she says it. The person after her often comments that she’s a “hard act to follow”.

    I need to rethink what I tell people I’m doing. Thanks for the reminder, Suzan :-)
    Trudy Van Buskirk recently posted..Boomers: What inspiration do you have as an entrepreneur?My Profile

    • LOL Jane … so true!

      Cendrine, you may well have a point there – in the case of small businesses the thought of using “basic” elements to appeal to clients and customers simply may never have occurred to them.

      And Trudy … I wondered if you might know Tsufit as she’s only just up the road from you. I emailed her last week telling her I was going to write this article and asking her if it was OK to quote her provided I credited her appropriately, but so far no news. Maybe she’s away on vacation. In any case she sounds like a wonderful character!
      Suzan St Maur recently posted..Do you know what you’re REALLY selling before you write about it?My Profile

  3. While I don’t think I ought to drape myself across a car (unless to frighten people into walking), I think you’re spot on. I would like to sizzle!

    Recently, a contact (who happens to be a lady) told me that a poster of an attractive woman she put in her shop window attracted three men as new customers. Whatever we think, it does work.
    robertz recently posted..Fast forward through the year’s eventsMy Profile

    • So true, Robert … much as we may sniff at such basic attractions: if they work, and bring us more business, can we really afford to keep turning our noses up at them?
      Suzan St Maur recently posted..Do you know what you’re REALLY selling before you write about it?My Profile

      • Suzan,
        Whilst (I just always wanted to use the word “whilst” in a sentence), I never received your original email (perhaps it got lost while making the trip across the pond) of course, it’s all right to spread the word! :) Thanks to your post, I’m sure there will be 7 less real estate agents telling us “Now’s a really good time to buy or sell a house ’cause mortgage rates are low and we’re a one stop shop for…”

        Trudy and Suzan, thanks for your kind words. The rest of you, go ahead and grab the 11 Secrets Suzan is referring to at http://www.SpotlightSecrets.com

        See you in the Spotlight!

        Tsufit
        Author, Step Into The Spotlight!

        • Hi Tsufit – glad we have finally connected! I replied to your email newsletter so you may find my mail in with that, or in your junk folder.

          Anyway I’m glad you like the “partnership” we have created between our two articles, and I hope to meet you when I’m next home in TO.

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