holesI am sure you’ve heard it all before, but it is really true that when you train your employees, you must teach them about the benefits of the product they are selling rather than the features, so they can deliver exceptional customer service.

When you show the benefits of your product to your employees, think of it like telling a story. You want to engage the audience and leave them feeling an emotional connection, teach them to tell that story so perfectly that it will become natural to them.

Theodore Levitt, a famous Harvard Business School professor used to summarize this concept to his classes with the following example: “People don’t want to buy a quarter-inch drill. They want a quarter-inch hole!”

Of course, features have an important part to play in selling your product. Features act as the “proof” for your benefits by helping you quantify the claims you’re making, it is also important way for people to measure your product against the competition. Without features, benefits are not as effective.

A feature is what something is. A benefit is what something does and its result. It answers the question: “What’s in it for me?” People buy things because it solves a problem, or most of the time, anyway…  Turn product features into benefits as you engage customers so your employees really deliver exceptional customer service. You can use your knowledge to lead your customer through the sales process, and make their experience an enjoyable one that they’ll want to revisit.

Successful sales and customer service people know all of their products’ features and skilfully turn these features into benefits for their customers.

So, how do you successfully extract true benefits from features?

  • First, make a list of every feature of your products or services
  • 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

The biggest difference between features and benefits is that the latter affect an emotional level that audiences can relate to.

It takes time and patience to learn how to focus on selling the benefits vs. the features of your products. Take the time to do that exercise with every single product, so you can improve your employees’ skills, but remember K.I.S.S. Yes, keep it simple, stupid, use simple words, no jargon nor buzzwords than your employees won’t be able to say and your customers won’t understand.

By understanding what your customers’ genuinely want, then your employees can give them solutions to their problems with an effective description of the final result and this will help them create a rapport with them and ultimately deliver exceptional customer service.