November 12, 2007

Talk benefits, not features

When you're promoting your business through public speaking, it's tempting to talk about all the things you offer: great customer service, cheapest rates in town, convenient hours, fast response times, high quality, yada yada yada.

Besides the fact that your presentation should always be informative, full of practical tools, and not a commercial, your audience really doesn't care about those things mentioned above, the features of your business.

What's in it for them?

What your audience cares about is what's in it for them. What do they get as a result of buying your service or product. What are the benefits of your service or product?

I could tell you that I offer one-on-one coaching, and that I offer PowerPoint design, that I have a kick-butt e-course, and that I provide seminars and trainings.

Notice all the "I's"? It's all about me. You really don't want to hear all of this during a presentation, do you?

Add to that my five-minute exposition of my credentials and a whole bunch of "good mornings" and "thank you for having mes" and I've just wasted a whole bunch of your time.

If I'm giving a presentation about public speaking and I want my audience to get something relevant and meaningful to them, I'm going to give them tools, and I'm going to give real examples and stories about how improving public speaking skills and confidence benefits them.

For example: When you build skills as a speaker, you gain confidence. You gain respect. You speak up for yourself in meetings. You persuade your coworkers to adopt your ideas. You successfully land a new client for your company, bringing you a fat bonus. Your status grows in your industry. You become known as an expert.

I might share a story about a client who gained exposure for her business in a national magazine after a successful three-minute pitch to the editors. I might share a story about a client who received several new clients as a result of a slam-dunk conference presentation.

Promote your business by not promoting it

If you're invited to speak at a networking group or other business event, don't promote your business by promoting your features. Please don't spend your time dropping names of your famous customers and telling me how happy they are. Please don't tell me what a great value your service is and how I can get a discount for buying a year in advance.

Give valuable information and practical tools your audience can use right now. Share the benefits of using your product or service not by spewing out a ten-minute commercial, but by demonstrating what your audience gains as a result of working with you.

What are the benefits of your product or service to your target audience?

On The Everything Page you'll find everything you need to build visibility, credibility and influence through engaging presentations that move your participants into action: freebies, low-cost products and courses, and 1:1 coaching!

5 comments. Please add yours! :

Anonymous said...

Great post Lisa.

Lisa Braithwaite said...

Thanks, Ross!

Matthew Cornell said...

This is an important, and (I'm realizing) fundamental idea. I'm working through Middleton's "InfoGuru" marketing book, and WIIFM is central.

SpeakerSue said...

And you lived your talk with this post! Excellent!!

Lisa Braithwaite said...

Thanks for your comments, Matt and Sue!

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