Today I want to confront a question head on that marketing pros should always ask themselves when writing sales copy for new product/service launches:
“How do I deal with the unescapable fact that competitors are going to talk a little “smack” about my product or service?”
This is a question I love to tackle directly when I create Core Message Platforms for B2B marketing clients, and business coaches and speakers.
For those who are new to my work, a Core Message Platform is a comprehensive document that contains all relevant marketing content and sales copy about your product or service. Its purpose is to serve as the “master message document” from which you create all of your essential marketing pieces.
Working from a Core Message Platform assures your messaging will be strong and consistent across all of your marketing channels (Repetition builds reputation!).
No two Core Message Platforms I’ve written have been organized exactly the same. However, I always insist that clients allow me to include a section labeled – Marketing messages intended to overcome potential product objections.
Kind of a long title, but I think it’s a critical section to include in every Core Message Platform. Here’s why.
Get real. Be honest.
Including this section in your Core Message Platform requires you to look at your product from 360 degrees. It’s fun and easy to write strong, confident messages about your unique selling proposition, and other clear-cut secondary product benefits. I’ve found this to be especially true when writing B2B medical marketing copy.
However, it isn’t as easy to face up to potential objections your target market may have about your product. Let’s face it. It’s not something you really enjoy thinking about. But you have to do it. In fact, it’s extremely important that you push yourself through this exercise, no matter how painful it may feel.
When you do, it’s essential that you get real and be honest with yourself.
In fact, force yourself to list at least three to five potential objections to your product or service – no matter how awesome you may think it is.
Too close to your product or service to do this? Ask a colleague, mentor, or market research professional to examine your product and give you their honest and straightforward opinion — without holding anything back!
Leverage this clever marketing strategy
After you’ve identified potential objections to your product or service, craft a series of strong marketing messages designed to overcome them. Again, the goal here is to anticipate what competitors and prospects will point to as a weaknesses in your product or service.
Be thoughtful, honest and proactive, and do everything you can to create strong compelling messages that clearly spell out the hidden benefits within these perceived weaknesses.
After all, prospects will often perceive an aspect of your product to be a weakness simply because they haven’t been fully informed of its benefit.
Here is the key. After you’ve created messages intended to overcome product objections, don’t hide them in your back pocket and use them only when faced with criticism (smack talk).
Instead, be out front and use these messages as key drivers in your marketing campaign. In other words, use these messages to play offense, instead of defense.
The signature service in my copywriting business is my Core Message Platform program. The strongest marketing messages I developed for this program arose from my willingness to examine what the potential objections to it might be.
As you design your next marketing campaign, make it a point to spend a lot of time on this exercise when developing your messaging. It isn’t easy, and it can be painful.
But remember, sometimes your best defense is an overpowering offense.
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