There are two important questions that every business needs to be able to answer:

What's in it for me?


Why should I buy from you?

The first questions, when answered correctly, helps sell your product or service, but it doesn't necessarily close the deal. In order to get the deal sealed and money in hand you have to be able to answer the second question sufficiently.
This is where a lot of businesses go wrong. They focus on one of these two questions but not both. Let's break these down a bit:

What's in it for me?

To sell your product or service you have to explain to the user why they need your product or service in the first place. But it isn't as simple as telling them they need a new car battery to replace the old car battery. They need a battery that is reliable enough or powerful enough that they can be confident that it'll work whenever and wherever they need it. Your audience might already know that they need a newly landscaped yard, so don't tell them that. Instead, tell them they want a yard that will provide them a luxurious outdoor getaway that is functional for quiet summer evenings under the stars, as well as a place where the kids can play away in complete safety and security.

But as I already said, this question doesn't close the deal. It merely provides your audience with the key selling points, convincing them that you have what they want. But they also know that there may be other people out there that also have what they want. This is why the second question is so critical.

Why should I buy from you?

Once your audience is convinced to buy the product or service that you offer, you have to make the case that you're the one they want to buy it from. The simple fact that you have the product or service to sell is not enough.

Ask yourself, what makes you different from the dozens or possibly even hundreds of others out there doing the same thing? Can you make the case for yourself in a way that is appealing? Do you just sell the same car batteries as everyone else or do you test regularly to make sure you sell only the most reliable batteries? And what makes your testing process better than anyone else's?

I've said in a previous article that great businesses are not necessarily those that do something unique, it's those that do something in a unique way. It doesn't matter if you're selling car batteries, landscaping services, or diaper products. Whatever it is you do, find a unique approach. Provide something extra that nobody else is doing. Look for an unmet need in your industry that you can capitalize on.

Selling your products is one thing, but you've also got to be able to sell yourself. The products will sell, it's just a matter of where and by who. You want to be the where and who.

What makes you unique?

So what is it that makes you unique? If you don't know, think about it, do a little research
and find out.

April 29, 2008

Stoney deGeyter is the President of Pole Position Marketing, a leading search engine optimization and marketing firm helping businesses grow since 1998. Stoney is a frequent speaker at website marketing conferences and has published hundreds of helpful SEO, SEM and small business articles.

If you'd like Stoney deGeyter to speak at your conference, seminar, workshop or provide in-house training to your team, contact him via his site or by phone at 866-685-3374.

Stoney pioneered the concept of Destination Search Engine Marketing which is the driving philosophy of how Pole Position Marketing helps clients expand their online presence and grow their businesses. Stoney is Associate Editor at Search Engine Guide and has written several SEO and SEM e-books including E-Marketing Performance; The Best Damn Web Marketing Checklist, Period!; Keyword Research and Selection, Destination Search Engine Marketing, and more.

Stoney has five wonderful children and spends his free time reviewing restaurants and other things to do in Canton, Ohio.


Excellent points Stoney! I ran into this all the time at my old job. There are literally thousands of jewelers out there (not including the online ones ;) so why would/should someone by from where I used to work? Better yet, why should they buy from ME? I had an easier time selling, when I could make the company different THROUGH ME.

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Search Engine Guide > Stoney deGeyter > Selling a Product or Are you Selling Yourself?