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You’ve got them, now what?

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Moving on from yesterday’s email where we talked about what motivation is and how to match it on your website.

If motivation is the “What”, the next step, Value is the “How.

In fact the simplest way to think about the flow of information on your page is always this:

1. What do you do for people like me?

2. How do you do it (in a way that’s different from anyone else)?

3. Why should I trust you?

We’ll get to the “Why” sometime soon.

But what is really Value when it comes to a product, or a business?

Rory Sutherland, chairman of the ad agency Ogilvy & Mather UK, says:

“We don’t value things; we value their meaning. What they are is determined by the laws of physics, but what they mean is determined by the laws of psychology.”

So you can see that value can be separated into 2 distinct “Whats”, what your product or business is and what you product or business means.

The second is the most important as it’s anchored in psychology.

Wondering why, when listing all your features nobody buys? You’re just telling them what your product is.

So let’s add in the benefits right? Still not enough, that’s what your product does (and how).

What’s even more powerful and that almost no business on their own gets right, is finding out what your business and product means.

Value is not just listing bullet points with features and outcomes.

It’s also about deeply understanding your audience and figuring out their thought processes, their beliefs and subconscious needs.

Now I won’t pretend I can psychoanalyze people for my clients, but through research you can truly get insights that set you apart. Because they are not surface level, but lay deep in people’s minds.


  • For one client in the golf niche, their audience wanted to buy used golf balls because they were much cheaper than new ones, but still they wanted premium quality balls. The way we positioned them was to tell visitors that they could find “premium golf balls they could afford to lose”.
  • For another client selling a subscription to an Instagram growth platform, their prospects were trying to grow their accounts, but every single time they posted they were worrying about the void, about their post bombing. So we sold them “a way to take the stress out of growing their IG account”.

How do you get these kinds of insights into people’s minds? And how do you phrase them on your site?

By interviewing people, running surveys, doing competitive research and more. After a while you start seeing patterns emerge.

And you simply use their own words as copy.

This is not about tricks, or growth hacks. It’s about understanding human behavior and presenting what you’re selling in its truest form.

It’s really about honesty and transparency.

Getting the Value part right is what makes people interested and wanting your product. It keeps them reading.

But then you have to make sure they don’t run away.

Topic for another day.

On another note, a new podcast I was interviewed on is live. If you’re in SaaS it might be particularly interesting. You can listen to it here or watch the video (here).



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Every week I write about what I’m learning at my copywriting/UX desk ,with fun, insightful and quirky stories.

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