Bostdorff: FBRsWritten by Roger Bostdorff | | firstname.lastname@example.org
What the heck are FBR’s? When sales people attempt to sell, many only use the “F.” But customers do not buy the “F” but rather the “B and R.”
When I am working with a client and he wants and needs sales assistance we always discuss “Feature Benefit Result’s.” I ask the client to tell me why a prospective customer should buy his/her product or service. Inevitably the customer takes me through an interesting scenario; most of the time the client focuses on the features of the product or service (the “F”) as opposed to the benefits. Customers do NOT buy features they buy the benefits that the features will allow the customer to reap…aka the results.
Put your product in front of you or at least a picture of it. How long is it? What color is it? What is it made of? What do you or your customers call it? How fast is it? Etc. These are features.
Now next to each feature can you identify how that feature can help or benefit the customer using your product? You cannot assume that the customer can connect the dots that a specific feature correlates to a benefit that is important to that customer. For example, the new car is economical. This new car delivers 30 miles to the gallon. That is probably a pretty easy feature that can correlate to a benefit/result. If your current car only gets 20 miles to the gallon, and you drive 30,000 miles/year you will be purchasing 500 less gallons of gasoline. If the gas price is $2.75/gallon you have saved $1,375/year. The more economical car is the feature but the resulting benefit is an additional $1,375 in your pocket that will allow you to purchase something you want but currently cannot afford.
When someone goes to Home Depot to buy a hammer, he is not focused on the hammer but rather the project he wants to build. When he buys a drill he is focused on the hole that needs to be created for his specific project to be completed.
What is the benefit someone is buying when they purchase a wrist watch? Was the first thing that popped into your mind something along the lines of “the ability to know what time it is?” If so, you fell into the Feature/Benefit trap that we often fall into when we develop our promotional materials and sales presentations.
A feature is an attribute or characteristic of your product or service. And a benefit is the value of the characteristic or attribute to your prospective customer. So in the example above, a feature is “keeps accurate time” and a benefit might be “prevents you from being late to meetings or important events”. We too often promote features when it is benefits that our customers are buying.
Please take a look at your advertisements. Are they focused on feature, feature, feature? Or do your ads identify what benefit is delivered by your features? When your salesman talk to customers are they discussing features or do they ask enough questions to understand why the customer is looking to purchase a product or service. If they understand why the customer is looking to purchase they will also understand what benefit your product or service can deliver to this potential customer.
Remember…customers do NOT buy features they buy benefits that provide positive results or value!
Roger Bostdorff is the President of B2B Sales Boost. He spent over 30 years with IBM in sales and sales management. B2B Sales Boost is a consulting company helping organizations improve their sales and overall business processes. He is also available for business speaking engagements. You can find more regarding B2B Sales Boost on the web at www.b2bsalesboost.com or calling (419) 351-4347. If you would like to receive the B2B Sales Boost Newsletter send an email to email@example.com.
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