Make me better and I’ll buy your product

From People Don’t Buy Products, They Buy Better Versions of Themselves by Belle Beth Cooper:

There is the famous story about Steve Jobs when he invented the iPod and everyone in the news and the rest of the tech industry scratched their head a little. MP3 players had been around for quite a while, what was so different about the iPod?

Of course, people argued many things were different, but one of the key aspects was how Jobs marketed and presented it: “1,000 songs in your pocket”. When everyone else was saying “1GB storage on your MP3 player”, telling people about the product, Apple went ahead and made you a better person, that has 1000 songs in your pocket.

Here’s how our friends at User Onboarding explained features vs. benefits: “People don’t buy products; they buy better versions of themselves. When you’re trying to win customers, are you listing the attributes of the flower or describing how awesome it is to throw fireballs?”

(1) The article also quotes Jason Fried: “Here’s what our product can do and Here’s what you can do with our product sound similar, but they are completely different approaches.”
(2) Cf. What problem are you solving?

5 thoughts on “Make me better and I’ll buy your product

  1. Simon Sinek discusses the importance of marketing the “why” in his TEDTalk:

    He says, “…In other words, when we communicate from the outside in, yes, people can understand vast amounts of complicated information like features and benefits and facts and figures. It just doesn’t drive behavior. When we can communicate from the inside out, we’re talking directly to the part of the brain that controls behavior, and then we allow people to rationalize it with the tangible things we say and do. This is where gut decisions come from…

    …the goal is not just to sell to people who need what you have; the goal is to sell to people who believe what you believe. The goal is not just to hire people who need a job; it’s to hire people who believe what you believe. I always say that, you know, if you hire people just because they can do a job, they’ll work for your money, but if you hire people who believe what you believe, they’ll work for you with blood and sweat and tears. And nowhere else is there a better example of this than with the Wright brothers…”



  2. “people don’t buy products, they buy better versions of themselves”… my favorite quote of the month… how does that play a role in Seeking Alpha – what better version of themselves are they seeking – do you think it’s a more wealthy version of themselves, or is it a more knowledgable version of themselves?

    • Seeking Alpha makes you a smarter investor, a more empowered investor, and a better investor. We achieve this by providing you with information and opinions that enable you to decide for yourself in a more informed way.

      Crowdsourcing and open debate about stocks are far more informative than the old model of paid sell-side analysts and journalists.

      What do you think?

  3. Pingback: The importance of product positioning, and how to get it right | A Founder's Notebook

  4. Pingback: Best practices in copywriting for marketing your product | A Founder's Notebook

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