For example, here are some Benefits: “save money,” “save time,” “make money,” “have less hassle,” “have more peace of mind.”
When you’re selling, you can talk about features all you want, but you must tie those features down to benefits—that is, say the benefit associated with any feature you mention. You may help people to understand investment options, plan for their future, structure budgets or grow their revenue—those are features—but “be financially comfortable” or “have more peace of mind” are probably the benefits.
Again, a benefit must be a universal human (or businessperson’s) desire. “Available 12 months a year” is a feature, “convenient” is the benefit associated with that feature. Everyone wants more convenience!
I am often struck by the number of businesspeople who can define the terms “features” and “benefits”—but then spend entire sales conversations talking about features! Prospects don’t necessarily listen closely, least of all to salespeople. They’re distracted, they’re afraid of salespeople who may pursue them relentlessly, many don’t like salespeople, perhaps they’re anticipating having to say no to you and are uncomfortable with that. All those things get in the way of a meaningful conversation.
So you’re speaking ... they’re not listening ... and they hear, “And that will save you money, Mary!” She wakes up then! “What will save me money?” she responds. That is a question and an opportunity for you to engage her.
Or you say:
“And that will save you a lot of time, Fred!” And he wakes up then—everyone wants more time—and the conversation starts moving toward dialogue!
Or you say:
“And Mary Lou, that will mean more peace of mind for you, don’t you think?”
And, because you mentioned that benefit, you’re more likely to get a response than if you’re running through a laundry list of features! Challenge yourself: what are the features of the service or product you offer, and what are the benefits associated with those features? When you’re selling, be sure you emphasize the benefits!