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What's in a Simple Question?

The key to success in sales lies in giving people what they want—the products and services that ease their fears, solve their problems, and help to fulfill their dreams. To get them to pay attention to your advertising, it’s vital that you understand your product or service from their viewpoint. That’s not always easy to do. But, here’s a simple question you can use to help you get there.

“Why Should I Care?”
Few people like to be sold. So, they will do what they can to avoid it at all costs. This includes not looking at anything that even resembles the feeling of being “sold”; whether it’s changing the station or channel on the radio or TV, “tuning out” mentally when salesmen talk to them, and sometimes even being less than polite … such as by hanging up on them or slamming doors in their faces.

As consumers, we’ve all been there and all felt that “I don’t care!” feeling. As a marketer, that “I don’t care” opens the door to a solution that you can use to get your target audience to look, listen, or click.

Turn that “I don’t care” around into a question: “Why should I care about that?” Then, apply the question to your advertising copy, your pitch, etc.

What Customers and Prospects Care About
This is best understood through examples. So, let’s say you run a pool cleaning business. The title of your website says “Andy’s Pool Cleaning—Pool Cleaning Experts in Townville.” That’s not bad. And if you’re the only pool cleaner in Townville, it will work just fine. People will call you and hire you.

But, what if you have competition?

To answer that question, a good rule to follow is: The more competition your business has, the better your advertising copy has to be. That goes for your website copy, your direct mail—all of it. (What makes copybetter? That question is going to be answered shortly.)

The fact is: your clients, customers, and target audience don’t care at all about how excellent your company is. They don’t care about the high-tech features of your product or the high quality of your service. They don’t think in that way and they definitely don’t buy that way.

People buy for rational reasons (great features, professional service), and they buy for emotional ones (how a product or service benefits them, solves their problems, etc..) So, you are wasting time and money if your copy simply focuses on features, quality, or expert this-and-that.

The solution is to figure out what emotional need your product fulfills for your target audience and structure your copy to appeal to that emotion. You’re looking for the things that benefit your customersfrom their point of view.

It’s not always easy to get into the customer’s or prospect’s head (or heart.) But it’s not impossible either. One way that often works is, when writing your copy, to continually ask yourself, “Why should I care about that?”

Back to our example pool cleaning website title:

Andy’s Pool Cleaning—Pool Cleaning Experts in Townville

Why should I care about that?

We can keep your pool really clean.

Why should I care about that?

So it stays clean.

Why should I care about that?

You don’t have to spend your time cleaning it; just jump in.

Do you see? It helps you determine a strong benefit to the prospect—something that appeals to them emotionally. (In this case, it’s ease, less work or relaxation). It gets you thinking not about what your product or service is or does, but what it means to them.

Let’s take another example: You’re looking for a financial backer for your start-up. Your pitch goes something like:

The Truck Yeah! Helping people locate pick-up truck owners in their area.

Why should I care about that?

People can find someone to help them pick up and deliver something.

Why should I care about that?

They don’t have to go rent a truck or van and move stuff themselves.

Why should I care about that?

You save a lot of time and money when you need to pick-up, move, or deliver stuff.

It’s always about what the prospect needs and wants. And a “prospect” is anyone—a lead, existing customer, prospective employer—from whom you desire a particular action or reaction. It can even be a friend or significant other that you want to “sell” on a particular event or activity.

If your current promotions are not bringing in enough business, you might want to have a look at the copy you’re using. Go through from the headline down. Anywhere where the copy is about the features or quality of your product or service, then ask yourself, “Why should I care about that?” and keep asking it until you arrive at a key benefit to the customer. Then re-work your copy to push those benefits.

This question will help you better appeal to what’s important to them. It will improve your success in any area in which you apply it.

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