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Selling feelings instead of products

Mon, 11/18/2013 - 18:23

I have two computers to give away for 1 dollar each, one for you and the other one to the next guy who will read this post. Since you are here first, please be my guest and pick one, but let me tell you something about these two devices.

The one I want to show you first is my MacBook Pro with an Intel Core i7, 8 GBs of RAM and a 1 TB hard drive. As you might have noticed, this is not the Apple’s base model, but a custom one, and let me assure you that that 1 TB hard drive was the best decision I made, and I will tell you why.

Last year I took a cruise trip with my family (an experience I encourage you to try) and all of us took photos all day long. I shared a cabin with my sister so, at night, some hours before dinner, while she was getting ready (and by that I mean put dozens of dresses on her bed while also complaining saying she had “nothing to wear!”), I took a moment to look at the photos we all had taken sitting in the couch with the notebook on my lap. Sometimes when I ran into a funny picture I called my sister to laugh together.

My point is that with that 1 TB I not only saved thousands of photos but gained precious time with not only my sister in that moment before dinner, but with myself, looking at happy family trip photos while feeling the up and down of the cruise. That’s priceless, and all of it thanks to this computer that was an amazing companion through the holidays.

The other computer I’m selling is a MacBook Pro with the same specifications as the previous one (Intel Core i7, 8 GBs of RAM and 1 TB hard drive) that I used for work.

Which one you want?

It’s interesting that some people will choose the first one while others will choose the last one, taking into account the fact that both are, technically speaking, the same. I’m presenting two computers with the same hardware configuration, but the difference is that I told you a story about the first one.

Telling stories about products or services, or something that you want others to use or to get it’s not something new, but sometimes forgotten.

I could come up with other examples but the truth is that you may have experience the same “trick” while shopping at eBay, when you found the same product twice, at the same price, but you choose one above the other because of… what?… Yes, feelings, maybe confidence in the seller or a better description of the product. You know it’s the same product, you already know the specifications of the product, you are just looking at the same product posted twice, but even knowing this you want to hit “Buy” in only one of those products.

When it’s time for you to sell or offer something remember not to sell the product itself, but to sell a product that has a story attached to it, that empathizes with the customers, that makes them feel. To achieve that goal you should tell more stories, create a context around your product, a context where that product or service you are offering becomes the hero of the story. When you are telling a story remember that your hero exists to defeat a villain, and that villain is the problem your customer is dealing with right now, and your hero (your product, your software, your service) must save this customer by proposing a new idea.

Based on “Tell me a story” by Brian Doll, a talk given at the 2013 PHP Conference Argentina.

Front-end Technical Leader
Magento Developer for several months, proactive (so I was told), and I like to argue (so I was told too).