Generalities Don’t Sell

It seems strange to lead with such a headline. Yet some of my clients expect me to get sales results for them with platitudes.

-We are the biggest.
-Our quality exceeds that of our competitors.
-People will love working with us.
-We will save you money.
-Our products will increase their revenue.
-We give them superb ROIs.

The list goes on forever and the client’s prospects fall asleep. The client complains that they can’t set up appointments with executives or that they are missing their sales targets. I wonder why?

It feels like I am pulling teeth just to get the facts.

-Why are you the biggest? How does that benefit your customer?
-What evidence can you give me that your quality exceeds that of your customers?
-Why would customers love working with you? Have they written testimonials telling you this? Can I have them?
-What proof do you have that you can save customers money? Give me a case study or actual data demonstrating this.
-By how much do you increase revenue? Do you offer a performance contract?
-By how much do you increase customer ROI? Can you give me specific examples?

The client eventually comes up with some useful information complaining all along that their company does not compile this type of information! This statement sometimes comes from clients that are selling multi-million dollar contracts!

So the net of this is a new headline for advertising that works.

“Specifics Sell”

Ninety percent of the success of direct response advertising relies on specifics. Specifics generate more leads and sell more products.

I’m not talking just about product features, but translation of those features into benefits. State the problem you solve and then prove it with specific results you typically deliver. Use testimonials, research and case studies to make your case.

Have you run into this issue in the past? How do you go about persuading your company or client about the importance of collecting the facts before attempting to sell their products or services?  

Posted on February 23, 2008 and filed under Direct Response Creative.