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There are numerous approaches we can take to selling our own particular range of products or services.

The traditional approach was to define our products’ features and benefits.

An iPad is small and lightweight which means that it’s highly portable.

Noise cancelling headphones monitor and cancel external noises so that they don’t distract you from what you’re listening to.

Small and lightweight is a feature. Portability is a benefit.
Monitoring and cancelling external noises is a feature. Not being distracted is a benefit.

But is that it?

Well no. It’s certainly a good place to start but we can take it further, and the question to ask is “So What?”

So what that an iPad is portable. How does that actually help me?

Well perhaps it means I’m carrying less weight in my bag which, if I’m a regular train commuter, could help with my on going back pain.

So what if noise cancelling headphones help me avoid being distracted? Maybe I struggle to concentrate on train journeys so I don’t get the work done that I really need to do, or perhaps I struggle to sleep on long flights because of the outside noise.

As salespeople, we’re taught to identify customer wants and needs and then try to address them with our products and services. But if that’s all we do, we risk seriously underselling ourselves.

So if we identify a way of addressing a prospect’s needs, it’s always worth asking ourselves the “So What” question.

A business owner looks for an accountant because they need help with day to day bookkeeping, producing year end accounts and tax returns.

There’s the need.

The accountant is fully qualified, and has well-honed systems and processes in place to ensure that the work is done quickly, accurately and on time.

There’s the benefit that addresses the need.

But “So What?”

Having someone who is fully qualified to complete the work accurately and on time means that the business owner doesn’t have to stress about doing the bookkeeping themselves, worry about receiving a brown envelope from HMRC, spend 3 hours a week doing the books and can now use that time to go out selling more of their own product.

That’s the value that they’re providing.

So don’t stop with feature and benefits, look for the wider value.. because that’s ultimately what your customers will be buying.

Defining your true value isn’t always easy. Maybe we can help.

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