Why do people buy, or not buy, your product?

Why do people buy or not buy your product?  This quote can help. “People don’t buy their way into something they buy their way out of it.” What a quote, huh? But what does it mean?

Win their hearts and minds

The reason why most customers do not buy your product is because they succeeded in buying their way out of it. They convince you why they won’t buy. This is because you were unable to buy your way into winning their hearts and minds. You see customers don’t buy products they buy what the product does for them.

They do not buy the pump because it has 14 horsepower and 5 torque speed; they buy it because it can pump water to their fifth floor flat with ease; and it’s blue (yes, even something as seemingly irrelevant as colour can tip the scales in your favour-or out of it).  And if you the seller are unable to articulate this, the buyer will find an escape route in your spiel and buy his way out. This is one reason why people buy your product (or don’t).

Address the pain

Why do people buy, or not buy, your product? People want to buy their way out of a pain not sink deeper into it. The employer that asks for training in writing effective reports does so because he wants to ease his immediate pain of having to make sense out of poorly written reports, with the ultimate aim of increasing productivity at work. When the seller harps on and on about the course content without spelling out how it will ease the buyer’s pain, he is accelerating the buyer’s search for the exit sign out of this pain you are causing him with your pitch.

Why do people buy

“We will show them how to write terms of reference” is not as ineffective as this: “A significant reason why your reports are not to your standard is because the terms of reference in incomplete.  Consequently, because the compass is faulty, direction is hampered. The training your staff will go through will correct this and you will see a dramatic improvement in the quality of reports and reduction in errors. Most of our clients report a reduction upwards of 75%.

Why do people buy? Self-projection

I read once that the home is an extension of a woman’s personality. The marriage counselor that wrote this shared an anecdote. The wife wanted a shelf installed at a specific place in the house. The husband got the fundi, and he and wife went out for dinner. Upon return, the shelf was there, only an inch lower than requested. Hubby brushed it off. Not wifey.

Within days, she moved from mild irritation to visible volatility.  And wise hubby quickly recalled the fundi to correct the anomaly and, once more, peace reigned. People don’t buy their way into something they buy their way out of it. They don’t buy your product because of what it is, they buy it for who they are (or want to be, or be seen as). I was pleasantly surprised to learn the other day that people don’t buy the bookshelf to stack their books in it; they buy it for the image it portrays of them. A full bookshelf that spans a wall portrays an image of intelligence, learned, with it.  Sell that.


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