By Chris Newton
One of the biggest marketing mistakes business people make when they create marketing 'collateral', is to assume that prospects care about their products. That is, they care enough to get excited about them. They don't ...
Another mistake is to believe that prospects somehow will know the benefits of the products and what the products do. As a result, all too many brochures are boring, sterile and technical. They're all about features. Not selling benefits.
But technical brochures don't have to be boring. They can be technical and interesting.
The Enviromist brochure (below) was designed by Results Corporation's client Elizabeth Redway of Riverland Steel. Rather than accept the standard promotional collateral from the manufacturer, Elizabeth decided she needed to use her 'Results skills' to design a more compelling sales tool. And boy, did she succeed!
The Headline on the Front Cover. Again, most manufacturer brochures have no benefit-oriented headline on the cover. Just a logo, photo of the product, and maybe a big model number. Elizabeth's brochure has a terrific benefit oriented headline that targets the farmer's concerns superbly: "Watch your returns grow instead of your weeds."
The Format - The format of this brochure, a mini-catalogue in fact, is very clever. It's a standard A4, with a fold out panel (see below). As well as allowing more content, the fact that it opens out gives it more impact, more 'presentation value'. The products are very clearly laid out with strong sub-headings, with photos of each product in use, and with clear explanations of their specific applications.
Benefit-Oriented Facts - Let's face it, farmers are no-nonsense people. They want facts, but they also want reasons why. This brochure delivers both. Here are some examples of the way the facts are delivered:
Graphic - The graphic below demonstrates the performance attributes of the product – a system for covered spraying – demonstrating that it is far more efficient than conventional uncovered methods. A critical factor to cost-conscious farmers.
Copy - The wording to this brochure is excellent. Tightly written, succinct, to the point, and yet me-to-you engaging, and rich in benefits.
"Why covered CDA spraying saves you money ..."
"Research has shown that conventional spraying may lead to one third of spray being lost as drift or evaporation, another third hits the ground and is completely wasted ... and just maybe, one third hits the target weeds.
Now compare what happens using Enviromist ..."
"Yet another advantage is that chemical uptake by the target weeds is enhanced by ..."
"Rain fastness is improved by up to three hours ..."
"... specifically designed for use in and around trees, vines and other plantings ... "
These benefits may not excite you. But what should excite you is how this technical brochure brings these products to life ... and how each and every paragraph is filled with benefits that will save the prospect money, time, wastage, and so on.
And really, that's what I'm getting at here. Your product or service will have compelling benefits that save time, money, give greater security, make people feel better ... or whatever it is. Your copy needs to dramatise, not dry features, but the benefits ... with specifics, so your market 'gets it'.
As I'm writing this, I had a call from a client in consulting. In answer to one of his questions about how to market his services, I applied this same thought process to his 'product'.
In other words, my advice to him was not to simply say he does consulting ... but to dimensionalise it! What outcomes does he produce for his clients? What specific problems does he focus on? What case studies does he have? What sort of clients does he help specifically?
You see, asking these 'digging' questions uncovers the heartbeat of what you offer. It breathes life into why someone would want to buy from you.
Back to the Enviromist brochure. A couple more great points ...
Reasons Why - There's a terrific panel in this brochure (situated beside the Equipment Specifications) headed '8 Saving Advantages of the Enviromist Weed Control System' ... with the sub-head, 'How the Enviromist System will help you eliminate problems with weed control' ...
All 8 summary benefits are in 'Point-of-You' benefit language. Not something you see in too many technical brochures ...
And finally ...
Testimonials: On the back cover of the brochure, above the contact details, are three very solid testimonials. Again, not something you find in too many technical brochures.
You know, we get a lot of clients telling us they have a mental blank when trying to design a good brochure or catalogue. But in reality, once you understand the process of showcasing your product or service is simply a strong benefit oriented headline, 'you-focused' copy, strong sub-heads, specifics about the product expressed in benefits to the prospect, and with graphic demonstrations and testimonials, you're virtually there!