Writing With Benefits

Last Update: February 12, 2014

When we visit a website we do not really care that its owner tells us how good her/his products or services are. Even if facts and data are provided, which is always good, that still does not really create the connection that triggers the desire to do what the site owner wants us to do.

Why? Because what we want is not that a company speaks of itself but that it speak to us. Big difference. In other words, when we write to an audience for our business, we have to write with benefits. Benefits for the reader, who should always be put first.

How to do that?

The following is a quote from a pdf file which is on copyblogger.com (Copywriting 101). I found it so good and so simple that I decided to share it as it is. Check it out:

  • "First, make a list of every feature of your product or service.
  • Second, ask yourself why each feature is included in the first place.
  • Third, take the “why” and ask “how” does this connect with the prospect’s desires?
  • Fourth, get to the absolute root of what’s in it for the prospect at an emotional level."

So, while being practical and down to earth by starting on the features basis (do we actually have to speak about anything else when we try to sell something?), the most important thing is to deliver what the reader really expects. Three distinct and complementary psychological buttons have to be pushed. Here is an example from the same document:

"Example - News Feed Reader app

  • Feature: “Contains an artificial intelligence algorithm.”
  • Why it’s there: “Adds greater utility by adapting and customizing the user’s information experience.”
  • What’s in it for them: “Keeps the things you read the most at the forefront when you’re in a hurry.”
  • Emotional Root: “Stay up to date on the things that add value to your life and career, without getting stressed out from information overload.”

It makes things easier to write contents, don't you think? Plus, it is winner and it can be adapted to most of the posts we write about something we are affiliated to.

Evidently, that will not be enough on its own to convert a reader into a buyer. The right KW, title, first paragraph, conclusion and call-to-action are indispensable too. But as for the body of the post, I think these could be the right keys.

Thanks for your comments.

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PhilRou Premium
Thank you very much John. I am glad this can help you and others.
Newbie John Premium
Fantastic article Phil...really great material for the readers of your blog. Thank you posting it as I know I and others will be putting forth the information you've set forth.
Karyskis Premium
Good information, thank you.
PhilRou Premium
You are welcome.
PhilRou Premium
Yes. The funny thing is that I know it but tend to forget it all the time. This is why I was particularly pleased to see a simple process outlined in three distinct points, all focusing on the reader.
Wayne Wallace Premium
So true, often we think about my website what do I want to say... when we should be thinking about Why? should they visit our website or use our services. The old say WIIFM = What's In It For Me should be what we are thinking when writing copy for our website.