BUSINESS MARKETING: 'Just the facts' informs but doesn’t sell

2013-03-23T10:20:00Z BUSINESS MARKETING: 'Just the facts' informs but doesn’t sellLarry Galler Times Business Columnist
March 23, 2013 10:20 am  • 

Back in the old days of black and white television, an iconic and hugely popular show was “Dragnet."

Sgt. Joe Friday kept told the people he interviewed – witnesses, victims, and suspects – “Just the facts” whenever they would embellish their answers to his probing questions.

Facts are important in marketing also because your suspects, prospects, and customers use facts to make objective comparisons. But facts alone won’t close the sale. Ultimately buyers purchase the benefit of the fact, not the fact itself.

  • Fact: These hiking boots weigh less then all other boots.
  • Benefit: You can hike farther and faster using less energy.

I don’t want to buy light boots. What I want to buy is the enjoyment of hiking faster, farther and easier.

  • Fact: This vacuum cleaner has the most powerful motor in its price range.
  • Benefit: It will pull more dirt from your carpet.

I don’t want to buy a more powerful motor; I want to buy a vacuum that will clean my carpet better.

Now consider your sales presentations. Are they just a laundry list of facts or do you lay out the facts and then tell, or somehow illustrate the benefits of your product or service?

Do you make the translation from fact to benefit for your prospects or are you hoping they will make that leap in logic by themselves?

But often they don’t make the leap to conclusion the marketing and sales departments expect (or hope for). The more clear the association is between facts and benefits the easier it is for your prospect to comprehend why they should buy.

It isn’t difficult to tie the benefit to a fact. Here’s a simple example.

  • Fact: This umbrella is 6 inches larger.
  • Benefit: It keeps you drier.
  • Statement: This umbrella is 6 inches larger so you will stay dry.

Take a look at your facts, and if they are not associated with benefits, start creating these fact/benefit associations so more of your prospects become customers. (big benefit and that’s a fact!)


Opinions are solely the writer's. Larry Galler, of Larry Galler & Associates, is a marketing and management consultant for small and mid-size companies. Get Galler’s Free Case Studies of small business transformed by a breakthrough strategies. Just email put "Case Study" in the subject line.

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