The Worlds Most Important Marketing Concept

The Worlds Most Important Marketing Concept



Wow,​ pretty grandiose title. But this is​ one area where understatement just won’t do. if​ more companies understood this one concept,​ their marketing would actually stand a​ chance of​ doing its job.

Before we get to​ this big idea,​ though,​ let me define what the​ job of​ marketing actually is. Ultimately,​ it​ should be designed to​ convince people to​ do business with you. That’s it. Every thing else related to​ marketing should all be done with that end result in​ mind,​ because that’s where it​ should all lead. Product,​ pricing,​ placement,​ promotion,​ and people need to​ all point in​ this direction. Every campaign aimed at​ increasing mindshare,​ raising product recognition level,​ penetrating new markets,​ or​ any other specific short-term goal is​ designed to​ convince people to​ do business with the​ marketer. or​ at​ least it​ should be.

So how do you​ do that? I’m not going to​ talk specific tactics in​ this article,​ but rather about the​ common unifying concept,​ which if​ understood,​ will direct a​ marketing campaign to​ success. the​ idea is​ actually so simple that you​ might be disappointed. But it’s so powerful that it​ will determine the​ outcome of​ your marketing.

Here it​ is: everything you​ do in​ marketing should clearly and explicitly tell the​ consumer how you​ will make his or​ her life quickly and dramatically better. if​ you​ can communicate that concept in​ a​ way that the​ consumer believes,​ and more effectively than your competition,​ you’ll never lack for business.

The problem that the​ overwhelming majority of​ businesses I work with have is​ that they are approaching their marketing from the​ wrong end. They’re focused on​ their company and their product rather than their customers. the​ ask questions like “How can we show people how great our product is?” rather than “How can we show people how much we can improve their lives?” I often get initial disagreement from company owners and managers when I first propose this. to​ most of​ them it’s a​ completely new concept. They have,​ since the​ beginning of​ their business life,​ been trying to​ figure out how to​ outshout the​ competition. the​ problem is,​ they’ve been shouting the​ wrong thing.

For those who disagree on​ this point,​ let me make this statement: the​ consumer doesn’t care a​ bit about your product or​ service. They really don’t. They care about what your product or​ service does for them. or​ in​ other words,​ how it​ makes their life better. the​ product or​ service is​ just a​ means to​ an​ end. Most marketers have gotten comfortable with the​ idea of​ selling benefits rather than features. But let me take that one step further by introducing a​ concept I call the​ Ultimate Life Benefit (ULB). the​ ULB goes beyond selling benefits. it​ shows the​ consumer how his or​ her life will be quickly and appreciably improved. And most products have many ULB’s.

To get to​ this way of​ thinking,​ list the​ benefits of​ your product or​ service and then ask yourself “And then what happens?” For example:
Feature: SPF 90
Benefit: Protection from sunburn
ULB: Your kids don’t suffer pain or​ skin damage. They are happy and healthy.
See what I’m getting at​ here? if​ you​ just go as​ far as​ selling the​ benefit,​ you​ haven’t communicated to​ the​ consumer how his or​ her life will clearly be better. the​ benefit is​ “Protection from sunburn.” Go ahead and tell the​ consumer that they’ll be protected from sunburn. Repeat it​ as​ many times as​ you​ like. Shout it​ loudly. You’ll get some results,​ but not great results. Shift your message to​ showing the​ results of​ the​ benefit,​ and the​ mental connection is​ made quickly and completely in​ the​ mind of​ the​ viewer. Show them exactly how your product delivers the​ benefit and produces the​ ULB and you’ve got them.

The trick here is​ to​ show exactly how your product or​ service leads to​ the​ ULB. Don’t just say or​ imply that it​ does,​ but rather demonstrate it​ explicitly. Don’t assume that the​ consumer will make the​ mental connection. I don’t know about you,​ but most people are too busy to​ figure out what advertisers are trying to​ say. Next time you’re watching television,​ pay attention to​ what advertisers are showing you. Most national advertisers are showing ULB’s. One of​ the​ most frequent and most obvious is​ commercials that show how using their product will make you​ more attractive to​ the​ opposite sex. Use this razor and get the​ girl. Use this mouthwash and get the​ girl. Drive this car and get the​ girl. Wear these clothes and get the​ girl. you​ get the​ point. the​ successful ads are the​ ones that make the​ connection clear. Car commercials are another good example. They don’t just say that the​ car is​ fast. They show you​ how you​ can enjoy unlimited freedom with that kind of​ horsepower. Jewelry advertisers don’t just talk about the​ total carat weight of​ their diamond jewelry. They show you​ the​ reactions of​ your friends when they see your new necklace.

A lot of​ advertisements miss completely,​ though. the​ advertiser is​ trying hard to​ get us to​ associate their product with something. But they fail to​ communicate it​ in​ a​ way that causes the​ viewer to​ make the​ mental connection. the​ commercial makes no point and is​ quickly forgotten.

Even the​ most mundane product can benefit by incorporating a​ persuasive ULB. Whatever you​ sell,​ there are benefits to​ it. Take copier paper for instance. Your paper may cost less,​ or​ cause less jamming,​ or​ maybe it’s brighter and sturdier. Whatever it​ is,​ it​ has a​ benefit. So then what happens? if​ it​ jams less,​ then you​ can concentrate on​ the​ important things,​ instead of​ continually fixing the​ copier. you​ get more work done,​ you​ make more money or​ get a​ promotion or​ whatever you​ choose to​ show. the​ benefit is​ that it​ jams less. But the​ ultimate benefit goes beyond that.

Every product has at​ least one ULB,​ most have quite a​ few. Find them and communicate them to​ the​ consumer,​ and they’ll have no reason to​ resist. They’ll see that it’s in​ their best interest to​ do business with you. And once that happens,​ just make sure you’re stocked up.



NOTE: You’re welcome to​ “reprint” this article online as​ long as​ it​ remains complete and unaltered (including the​ “about the​ author” info at​ the​ end). Please send notification of​ publishing to​ derekf@derekfisch.com.




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