It was the summer of 2016 and I was deep in the heart of Texas. My client, a software developer, had hired me to help him revamp his marketing and help him grow his business from a team of one to a team of five.
Like most clients who need marketing help, this client wasn’t quite ready for me.
For starters, he had two separate offers he wanted to sell to two separate and opposing prospects.
For example, he wanted to sell custom applications to startups.
He also wanted to sell custom end-to-end back-end applications for established businesses.
And he also thought that $90 an hour was too much to charge for his services.
AND he wanted to be able to sell all that with a contact form on a website.
Does anyone else see a few glaring problem here?
When I came on, I knew that I couldn’t sell all of that on a single page, let alone with a contact form.
I also knew that my client couldn’t sell all of that, all at once.
And if we tried to brand and market to one avatar – say, the organization who needed custom software, for example – we’d turn away his other avatar, the funded startup.
And don’t get me started on $90/hour!
I find that most of the time, entrepreneurs with lead generation problems don’t really have a lead generation problem. They have an offer or an operations problem.
And fortunately, the offer problem is the easiest to fix, so that’s what we’ll talk about today.
What I found is that most of the time, when someone has on offer problem, it’s not that they’re necessarily selling the wrong thing, selling it to the wrong person, or pricing it incorrectly.
Just like my software developer client who wanted to sell custom development to barely-funded startups
Alone, any of those components is as fine as any other. There’s nothing inherently “bad” about selling a $5 product or targeting newbies…. Or doing the opposite for that matter and charging a $100,000 for a single consultation call.
The problem lies in the alignment of these components.
That is, the problem is that many struggle because they’re targeting the wrong person for the product they’re selling… or pricing it wrong for the person they’re targeting… or positioning wrong to attract the right person. And so on and so forth.
In all, I’ve uncovered ten different components of an offer, all of which must be in sync in order for your marketing to work as well as it can.
Once you get these down, you’ll know exactly what to say in your marketing messages and why some of the marketing you’ve launched previously may not have worked as well as you’d hoped.
The top 3 P’s are the most important to get right out the gate. While the other P’s of the Marketing Formula can be off, get these first three wrong and nothing will work as you hope. These three are Problem, Person, and Product.
The first P is the Problem. I list it first because it’s the most important… and also the one so rarely ever looked at. The problem is the reason your prospect (or Person) is going to buy at all. Let’s say, for example, that you sell Tylenol. You’re not selling to every man and woman over the age of 18. No, you’re trying to reach those who have a headache. The same holds true for what you sell.
I believe Gary Bencivenga said it best when he said, “Demographics aren’t markets – problems are.”
The second P is the Person. This Person will have the problem you solve. This person has certain characteristics, of course, but the important bit is that they will resonate with all your other P’s. (Which you’ll learn about if you download the Marketing Formula Worksheet.)
The third P is the Product. Now, the product is of course what you sell. It’s also the SOLUTION to the Problem You Solve and it’s the solution the Person You Reach would want to buy or be able to buy. Note that the Product isn’t what you want to sell or what others say you should sell, but the very thing which solves the Problem for the Person.
Now here’s the thing: each of these three must be in alignment with each other. If you change one thing – such as the Product You Sell – you have to change the other items to match.
Before you hire a copywriter or marketing consultant, I encourage you to get at least these three items fully fleshed out and in alignment. That way, you give yourself the best chance for your marketing investment to pay off.
And to get all 10 P’s to build your Marketing Prescription Formula, you’ll want to get the 10P Marketing Prescription Worksheet. You can download it HERE.
Direct Response Copywriter Lynn Swayze has specialized in Consultant Marketing and Information Marketing since she jumped on the scene in 2014. She's worked with big names like Agora, Kevin Rogers, John Bowen, Mike Weiss, Jason Hanson, and more. She works as CMO to IDRM LLP and is a staff copywriter at several organizations.
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