The great marketing debate: Features vs. Benefits

#mktng193 - boy and girl customers shopping
When buying, some people look into features while others look into benefits.

There is a famous story in the tech world that has been making the rounds on the Internet. It’s about Steve Jobs and the first time he showed the world the iPod. He told the audience that owning one was like “having 1,000 songs in your pocket”.

It was clearly different from other brands that made a similar device but only advertised how much memory it had.

That moment clearly demonstrated the difference between benefits and features. 

In the mind of a consumer, the benefit of convenience became the selling point of the iPod. On the other hand, 1 terabyte of memory is an impressive feature for those who understand it.

When it comes to marketing services, features and benefits both play an important role in convincing potential customers to choose your services over those of your competitors. But they focus on different aspects of your offering.

What are service features?

Service features refer to the specific capabilities and characteristics of your service. These could be technical specs, design elements, or anything else that makes your service different or better than what your competitors offer.

For instance, if you offer web design services, your features might include a highly customizable interface, optimized page load times, and responsive design that works on multiple devices.

What are service benefits?

Service benefits, on the other hand, are the advantages that customers can expect to receive by using your service. Benefits are often framed in terms of how your service can solve specific problems or address customer needs.

For example, your web design service might offer benefits like improved user engagement, increased search engine visibility, or better conversion rates for your customers’ websites.

Another important consideration when marketing intangible services like web services is to focus on the emotional benefits of your service. 

This might include things like increased confidence, improved brand awareness, or a greater sense of satisfaction for your customers.

By tapping into the emotional benefits of your service, you can create a more compelling case for why potential customers should choose your services over those of your competitors.

Which is better for a web design agency?

While both service features and benefits are important to highlight in your marketing efforts, don’t confuse or misuse them.

For one thing, service features tend to be more objective and quantifiable. You can point to specific technical details that make your service stand out. Benefits, on the other hand, are more subjective and tied to the individual needs and preferences of your customers.

In terms of which approach is better for selling intangible services like web services, there is no one-size-fits-all answer.

One effective way to balance these two approaches is to use case studies or customer testimonials. By showcasing real-world examples of how your service has helped others, you can demonstrate your technical capabilities and the benefits that your customers can expect.

Testimonials that focus on features

social media,social media design,social media graphics,social media christmas designs,socmed designs
Testimonial - Tech Marketing Engine
Testimonial - Flat Cap Creative

Testimonials that talk about benefits

Testimonial - Model Tourism
Testimonial - Vegan Web Design
Testimonial - Clear Brands Grow

How to strike a balance

It’s important to strike a balance between emphasizing the technical capabilities of your service and how those capabilities can help your customers.

By understanding the differences between service features and benefits, you can create a more effective marketing campaign that resonates with your customers and helps you stand out from your competitors.

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