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The Disconnect Between Product and Marketing...

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The Disconnect Between Product and Marketing...

Postby jsawvel » Mon Jan 19, 2009 8:12 am

I am new to selling and copywriting and I am kind of running into a wall.

I am doing a lot of reading about copywriting and the selling process, but there seems to be a disconnect between the selling proccess and the product you are selling.

Perhaps they are too different fields and I just need to learn more about the product side.

There seems to be this idea that ANY product can be sold, given you are a good salesperson or you use the right techniques.

So, I have been going out and reading books to try to understand HOW to sell products, as if selling is something I can master and then I can sell ANYTHING to ANYONE.

It seems like perhaps there are TWO CAMPS of sales people. There are the people that use the SAME techniques to sell anything.

And there are the people that do a good job of presenting product benefits to people so they have REASON to buy.

Ideally, selling should be about communication. You as the seller should be there to communicate the benefit that your product is going bring to your customer. The good seller communicates effectively.

However, the other camp of seller seems to shun communication, because perhaps they have nothing REAL to communicate.

This camp of seller seems to stay vague on everything or simply play on emotions and include little reason in the sales pitch.

Perhaps if you don´t have enough time to educate yourself about a product or a product is not compelling on its own, you have to use something other than COMMUNICATING THE REAL BENEFITS.

So, more information on how to find quality products to sell would be helpful. I guess if you are stuck writing copy for a crappy product, then you just have to figure out how to sell it no matter what.
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Maybe selling techniques don´t make sense because...

Postby jsawvel » Tue Jan 20, 2009 3:02 pm

I am currently reading a lot on selling and to me, there are a lot of techniques that are just straight techniques, nobody really seems to know why they WORK, you just copy the technique and it is supposed to work.

It seems to be that a lot of techniques are for people who are selling things that they don´t really believe have any value or they can´t think of good reasons for the other person to own them.

And this probably goes for a lot of products on the market. A lot of products are just plain worthless or there is a competitor that makes something better at a better price.

So, there seem to be two lines of defense in selling. One line deals in the real world, will real human needs or wants.

The other line focuses on TECHNIQUES to try to get people to buy something that otherwise has no redeemable value.

For instance, I was watching a Ketchup commercial the other day. This commercial had people dancing around with ketchup bottles in their hands. And the commercial was totally not about Ketchup or what it would do for you. It was using techniques to give you a happy feeling when you think of that ketchup.

I don´t mind advertizing that shows me how "I" can get what "I" want, but I don´t like advertizing that tries to manipulate my feelings or desires. To me this advertizing is not trying to help ME get what "I" want, but is trying to redirect my motivations and get me to work for someone elses profit. This kind of advertizing doesn´t really believe in honoring human freedom.

To me, the key to making advertizing that actually benefits people is to only sell products that give people what they ALREADY want. If someone wants something and you show them how to get it, this is helpful and useful. You are actually increasing value in the economy.

However, if you try to manipulate your audience, you are not creating value. You are actually harnessing other human beings to work at what you want them to work at, not at what they want. This is not a mutually beneficial arrangement and it is not transparent.

I am interested in any suggestions of books that encourage marketing to people based on their actual desires and solving their real problems.

If you can´t compete on an honest playing field, then you shouldn´t exist.
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Postby procopywriter » Sun Jan 25, 2009 8:26 pm

jsawvel,

Where do I begin...

Any serious marketer understands the need for a quality product, and won't waste his time promoting substandard crap. Long term success and wealth comes from building lifetime relationships, not constantly looking for the next sucker.

There are certainly con-artists out there using legitimate marketing techniques to pawn their products. But that's not the path to wealth. Any serious business person (or copywriter) is going to run hard in the other direction from such people.

In one sense, all marketing is manipulation. It's designed to arouse emotions to get people to buy. But people also need logical reasons to back up their buying decision, and any good marketing piece will provide them.

Very few will buy just on emotion alone. And if they do, they often immediately regret it. (The proverbial "buyer's remorse".)

In short, to be effective at marketing you need BOTH a quality product AND an marketing piece to sell it which includes logical reasons to buy as well as emotional benefits the prospect can connect with.

I hope that clears up some of your confusion!

Aaron
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I just think the emotional side should...

Postby jsawvel » Mon Jan 26, 2009 4:54 am

I think the emotional tools should connect with what the person is already feeling, rather than trying to stimulate other emotions that "get the person to buy" but are not in line with what the person wants.

I am all for giving people what they want. And to do this, I think you have to show them how it will satisfy them and connect with their emotional reasons.

But I don´t really agree with using techniques to manipulate people´s emotions.

I think if you use them, then you are a bit weasley.

Ofcourse, if you are and you don´t mind, then thats ok.

Probably the hard part of marketing to people´s specific desires is the difficulty in discovering what those desires are.

Its probably easier to make a GENERAL appeal to people.

I was just reading in a copywriting book written by Bly that it is the "copywriters obligation to use every tool in their arsenal."

Im sure clients will be pleased if you use "every tool" available to sell. However, you aren´t really looking out for your customer if you do.

One sales tape I was listening to said that you should CHOOSE products that will benefit your customers and then "get your customers to buy them."

So, that is one way of making yourself feel better. If you know you are providing quality products that will improve the lives of your clients.
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Postby procopywriter » Mon Jan 26, 2009 12:49 pm

I think the emotional tools should connect with what the person is already feeling, rather than trying to stimulate other emotions that "get the person to buy" but are not in line with what the person wants.

I am all for giving people what they want. And to do this, I think you have to show them how it will satisfy them and connect with their emotional reasons.


You've hit the nail on the head. You can never manufacture an emotion that isn't already there. You can't create motivations that your prospect doesn't already have. You can only tap into what they're ALREADY thinking and feeling.

This is where good marketing--and good copy--begins.

After reading your posts, it's obvious you have issues with selling and "manipulation".

First, understand that selling is being of service. If your product (or service) solves a problem, then it's your OBLIGATION to use every persuasive tool at your disposal to move your prospect to action. You're doing him a favor. You're helping him solve his problem.

Selling is about leading people to action. People are often stubborn, stuck in their own momentum, etc. So if you're going to be successful at moving them into action, you need to use persuasive tools the rest of the world may call "manipulation".

But if your product is truly adding value, then there is nothing dishonest whatsoever about using the tools of persuasion to lead your prospect to action.

The difference between what the rest of the world calls "manipulation", and the softer term "persuasion" is simply your intent. A manipulator is only self-serving... while a persuader seeks win-win outcomes.

If your product adds value to your prospect's life, and you sell it to him at an agreed upon price, it's a win-win outcome.

I heard someone once say that the only difference between "manipulation" and "persuasion" is intent.

I've also heard someone explain once (I believe it was Kevin Hogan) that all forms of persuasion is "manipulation", and that there is nothing morally good or bad about manipulation. It's your INTENT that makes it good or bad.

The question for anyone to ask themselves is: "Are you adding value... or are you simply self serving?"

I can tell you from personal experience that most people in business really care about adding value and helping people. Self-serving sleaze-balls are certainly out there--but they're a very small minority.
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