Small stylized mouse
Posted in Marketing

Benefits 2.0 protect your self-image

When we last met…

Last week we talked about the spiffy mousetrap you invented and how to convince people to buy it. When you tried to sell it by listing its features, nothing happened.

Now your spouse is getting crabby. Your startup costs left a gaping hole in your retirement account and your garage is overflowing with boxes of mousetraps.

When we examined how your  mousetrap’s features would give the mouse-beset what they want out of life, we came up with a list of what I call Benefits 1.0, shown in the middle column of the table below.

In closing, I wondered – not idly – whether there are more compelling benefits.

According to Chip and Dan Heath, authors of Made to Stick, there are: those that protect the buyer’s self-image. When making a decision, they say, “It’s almost as if people consulted an ideal self-image: What would someone like me do?

Who should we target?

With that question in mind, let’s first identify the self-image of a person who would be attracted to each of your mousetrap’s features.

Recycled plastic and stainless steel: I try to live by the rule “reduce, re-use, recycle” and appreciate high quality products that make that possible.

Built-in UV light: I’m well-informed, analytic, and proactive.

Patented attraction system: I’m an early adopter who gets a kick out of trying new technologies.

Captures instead of clamping: I love animals and only buy cruelty-free products.

FeatureBenefits that give you what you want out of lifeBenefits that protect your self-image
Made from recycled plastic and stainless steelYour house will be mouse free in no time.Finely crafted from recycled materials, our mousetrap will be used for generations to come. Make the world a better place for your children.
Has a UV lightYou won’t have to touch or store icky mousetraps.No need to don a hazmat suit every time you deploy our mousetrap or dispose of your catch.
Has a patented mouse attraction systemNo more frustration –  simple and quick to set up.Hey, kids, be the first on your block to see our patented mouse attraction system in action! Catch more mice, faster than any of your friends!
Captures mice instead of clamping themYour mornings will be calm.Our mousetrap is so humane that mice are happier inside it than in the wild.

And why would they buy?

If you embrace green living, would you choose a mousetrap that will get rid of mice or one made from recycled material that will last for generations?

If you’re informed, analytic, and proactive, which argument would appeal to you more, one that refers to touching icky things or one that uses technical terms like hazmat suit and deploy?

If you’re an early adopter, would you prefer to avoid frustration or be among the first to use an exciting new product?

If you’re an animal lover choosing between two improved mousetraps, which would you choose – the trap that keeps your  mornings calm or the trap that proves you love animals?

The power of me

Your self-image has a lot of power over the choices you make. You’re likely to take on a challenging task or buy a more expensive product to prove to yourself and others that you are who you say you are.

Now you do it

What product or service do you sell? What’s your ideal customer’s self-image? How can you talk about your product or service in a way that reinforces that self-image?

Share your answers in the comments.