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Selling the benefits not your process

This project was an interesting example of someone selling a process rather than selling the benefits of his work to his end-user clients. This chap provided a great service to schools, running days where students participated in making things from clay. He had many great testimonials from previous clients and seemed to be doing a great job.

He came to me as his last marketing campaign has been completely unsuccessful in securing new leads and he wanted to understand why and change his approach to generate sufficient revenue to give him the lifestyle he wanted. We did some rough calculations and given the rate he charged for his services and his aspirations for earnings, this seemed very achievable. It must be said that this is not always the case with very small businesses but that’s another story.

We looked at his marketing and quickly realised that he was talking about how he used clay modelling with the students, how the day was organised and how he needed a couple of days at each school to make it worth his while. As an illustration of this, the subject line in his email marketing campaign was “A one-day clay modelling day”. Another important aspect was that he talked about at least three services that he provided. We have developed the philosophy that more than one CTA (call to action) means that you have no CTA. We have some experience that this is the case in all offerings, irrespective of the size of organisation or cost of the product/service.

Back to this chap.

Having talked through his service, we realised that he was offering great value to the students he worked with. We also realised that he had a very impressive track record in education and working with students who were not very engaged with their studies and had discovered a way of overcoming this and re-engaging them with learning across most of their subjects. He mentioned none of this on his website or within his marketing copy.

To illustrate this, we included all this information on his website, pointed towards it in his marketing and used the subject line of “An effective way to engage dis-engaged students.” All of this was true, it was just that he was thinking about his service from his point of view, rather than thinking about what would be important to his prospective clients.

What teacher would open an email that sounded like a lot of work to organise an event that just sounded “nice to have”, particularly in times of budget restraints on the education sector.

What teacher would ignore an email that offered the possibility of helping their problem students get back on track?

As you can imagine, his next email campaign was much more effective.

This is a great example of the importance of thinking through what a business is offering, not from the view point of the business, but from the viewpoint of the customer/client. Mostly, clients will not buy your process, they buy the results they want to achieve.

That’s true for your business and it’s true for our business. It’s more important to you that we solve your business issue than the method we used to solve it!

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