Let’s face it. There are many lawyers out there doing the same or similar thing as you. And when prospective clients can’t distinguish you from the competition, they don’t have a compelling reason to engage you. So how do you get prospects to choose you over your competition in the cloud?
One highly effective technique is to stack your website with benefits. Read on to learn why this technique is essential to communicating your value proposition and how it helps you get inside the minds of your prospects.
What’s in it for the prospect?
Let’s take a closer look at what we mean by benefits and why they differentiate you from the pack. According to respected marketer Drew Eric Whiteman in his book CA$HVERTISING: How to Use More than 100 Secrets of Ad-Agency Psychology to Make Big Money Selling Anything to Anyone:
“Benefits are those things that offer your prospects value. And as the word implies, they’re things that directly benefit not you, but your prospects. Is a benefit the same as a feature? No! A feature is simply a component of a product or service…..The features are the attributes. The benefits are what you get from those attributes.”
The distinction between features and benefits is an important one. I would suggest that many lawyers fall into the trap of talking about their attributes only and skip emphasising the benefits. They say that they’re commercially focussed, that they’re solutions focussed, that they understand their clients’ issues, and so on. If you visit a few of the websites out there, you’ll see largely the same message.
The trouble is that these sorts of messages aren’t clear in terms of what they mean for the prospect. They focus on the attributes, rather than the benefits, leaving the prospect to fill in the gaps. As Drew Erich Whiteman explains, benefits are crucial to answering the key question your prospects need answered:
“The benefits are what entice people to buy. Remember, the entire time people are reading your ads, they’re consciously thinking “WIIFM?”: “What’s In It For Me?……. By loading your ads with benefits, telling your prospects how and what they gain, how their lives will improve, you’re answering the “WIIFM” they’re continually trying to satisfy. And when you do, their desire for your product increases, and you’re on your way to making a sale.”
This applies to your website as it does to all marketing materials. It’s up to you to tell prospects how they will benefit from engaging you. Without knowing the benefits, prospects will look elsewhere for somebody who can give them the reasons they need.
Own your benefits – craft a ‘Benefits’ page
In a recent blog post, I suggested that your website’s ‘About’ page isn’t the place for a sales pitch. Instead, I suggested that your value proposition be pitched through a separate page, called ‘Benefits’ or ‘Why us’.
So what benefits do you offer? The more compelling benefits you come up with, the better chance you have of converting prospects into fee paying clients. One by one, each of your benefits should articulate the components of your value proposition.
Think about your practice. What are the types of problems you solve for clients? What is your business model, your expertise and your features of service? Most importantly, how do all of these things translate into benefits for the prospect?
I’m not suggesting that you don’t refer to your business model, your expertise, your attributes and your features of service in your copy. By all means refer to these, but make sure that you also show how they translate into benefits from the client’s perspective. Once you think like this, your benefits page will look very different to the conventional copy of a law firm.
Let’s examine two attributes/ features of service which are typical of the legal industry and see how they could be translated into benefits. Note that this isn’t an exercise in choosing which words to use and in what order. We’ll tell you how to write persuasive sales copy in another blog post.
Attribute/feature of service: Commercially focused.
Benefit: We’re flexible to adjust to your commercial requirements. For example, if you need a hard-nosed negotiator we can play that role. Or if you need a diplomatic negotiator to get your deal across the line, we can play that role too. Bottom line: it’s all about getting your legal results aligned with your goals.
Attribute/feature of service: Access to a large precedent base.
Benefit: Not all documents are created equal. Our documents are made with precision and care. Our quality control process means that before we use a precedent, it has been peer reviewed and approved by our precedents’ committee. After we put our precedents to use, we monitor performance and iterate to learn from real world practice and reflect the latest changes to law. What does this mean for you? We know our precedents inside out, so when we tailor them to serve your interests, we save time, save you money and give you the commercial edge.
These are just examples showing you how you can flesh out the benefits. You’ll need to boil this down and then tailor your copy to your target audience.
Over to you
It’s always a tough ask in a crowded marketplace to get prospects to choose you over the competition. Make no mistake, it’s a battle out there to win them over in the cloud.
At the same time, you have a great opportunity to differentiate yourself from the competition who are telling a similar story. Take the opportunity to show your prospects what’s in it for them. If you give them compelling benefits, you give them reasons to choose you.