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As you work through your business plan, one of the things that come up is what do you sell. Well, it may seem easy to list products and services by name, and that’s enough. But the truth is each product or service has a reason it’s selling that has nothing to do with what it’s called but instead what it does, namely, solve problems or provide exceptional value.

At this point in your business plan journey, you’ve likely heard the idea that you need to focus on benefits over features. But sometimes, this can feel unnatural and maybe even a little tricky as the business owner. After all, you sell a product or a service, and how it benefits the person who buys it might vary – but you do need to know this information.

Knowing this information will help you not only advertise your product but will also help you create new products and services. To figure this out, it will help you first to list the features that your product or service offers, then describe the benefits and value of the feature in words and terms that your ideal customer will appreciate.

When you write clear benefit statements for each of your products and services, it shows your audience that you relate to their needs, you understand their pain, and you know what they need. For example, if you’re a virtual assistant selling customer care services, what is the benefit in the mind of the person buying your service? If you can put yourself in their head, it helps.

If you already have customers, send them a survey and ask them directly how they most benefited from your product or service. This can help you get the words right. You can use these words in future advertisements or sales pages.

To write your benefit statements for your products, do the following:

Know Which Problems the Product or Service Solves

Make a list of the problems that each of your products or services solve for your audience. You might want to take a look at your customers at different stages in their buying journey to differentiate each benefit and whom it benefits.

* Highlight the Feature That Provides the Benefit – Make a list of each feature and the corresponding benefits that the feature offers based on where your customer is in their buying journey.

* Explain How They Garner the Benefit When Using Your Product or Service – As you know, the benefits offered don’t just come from the purchase in most cases. They come from an action that the buyer takes too. Make sure you explain that.

* Prove, Qualify, and Quantify the Results – The more sources you can use to showcase the facts that your product or service does what you say, the better. Use stats, studies, and testimonials to prove, qualify, and quantify the benefit’s results.

Focusing on the value and benefit your products and services provide your ideal customer takes a little practice. You’ll need to put yourself in their shoes and see your offering from their viewpoint. It can take a little practice, but once you get the hang of this, it will not only improve your business plan, but it will improve product creation and the entire selling process.

All the best,
Patti

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