June 21, 2018

why people buy

I Was Recently Reminded of an Old Analogy I Used to Use to Explain Why People Will Always Find Money When They Don't Have it and it Goes Like This...

If I offered you a house in Chelsea, London for £60,000 or San Francisco, USA for $80,000 if you paid the full amount up front in cash, even if you didn't have the money (and lets be real here, the average person doesn't have that kind of money to hand) you'd be doing EVERYTHING you could to find the money from somewhere.

  • You'd get a loan...
  • You'd crowdfund...
  • You'd get a cash advance on credit cards...
  • You'd convince your friends and family to pitch in...
  • You'd do whatever you could to find the money...

Why Find The Money?

Because you know the return on investment that you'd get for buying a house in one of the most expensive places to live in the world.

Think of what you'd make back, the investment would be a no-brainer.

But the money being asked for isn't small fry either, and still, you'd be doing everything in your power to raise the funds. Now I'm saying 'you', because I'm assuming you're a true entrepreneur and true entrepreneurs wouldn't let this opportunity pass you by.

However, there may be some people or perhaps even you, who says 'Meh, not for me thanks'. You may not be motivated by money and the thought sounds nice but it's not your dream to be financially free. 

The Do's, Dont's and Musts Of Selling a Service

When we think about selling our services, we also need to be thinking with this mindset...

  • We DON'T have to sell cheap to get someone to invest.
  • We DO have to show our prospects the return on investment.
  • We MUST know exactly WHO we're talking to in order to ensure we speak to the right people and we know what motivates them.

The return on Investment doesn't have to be money

This example is an obvious analogy of a great return on investment, but the ROI doesn't always have to be money and in fact in a lot of cases it's not.

Think about why people buy a new car for instance. As soon as they drive it off the forecourt it's immediately lost monetary value which flies in the face of supposed logic.

Or indeed why people buy a house that isn't for investment purposes i.e. they are not planning on selling it and actually just want to live in their dream house.

The return on investment takes a slightly different form in these circumstances, in the form of fulfilment. 

That feeling of having reached a certain pinnacle in their life.

It's also playing on our desire for newness. 

We love buying the latest tech toy, the new iphone, the new release etc. Novelty can be a huge motivator in the reasons why people buy.

It may be the case that there is some form of aspirational connection...

 ...which may have taken the form as keeping up with the Jones's, which also taps into our need to buy what's popular. Or indeed they want to upgrade their lifestyle to be 'like' that person they admire.

And then of course, theirs our need to please others. 

We're not as self absorbed as this blog post may insinuate. Brendan Burchard, the High Performance Coach & Persuasion King, coined the phrase 'Extended Benefits' as one of the reasons people are persuaded to buy something. Extended benefits are the benefits that extend beyond ourselves into adding value to our loved ones, our community and the world as a whole. Perhaps buying that bigger house will be better for the kids. Are the schools better in that area? Will it mean they all have their own rooms? Maybe buying that house will mean that you can now care for your elderly aunt or perhaps the area you're moving to has been crying out for someone with your skills and experience.

Let's not forget one of the biggest reasons people buy - usefulness.

Usefulness is highly underrated and sometimes we can actually go in the opposite direction and promote only the benefits and not the features. The features of what you are offering are equally important because it gives people logic to help justify their emotional buying decision.

Going back to the last bullet point above... who are you talking to and what motivates them?

Are you talking to the property developer or savvy investor? Or are you talking to the family man/women who wants an amazing home for their family? Their motivations will be very different as to why these people buy.

The ultimate reasons why people buy...

People buy emotionally first and then they justify that decision to 'want' to buy with logic. I mentioned above some of the main motivators to why people buy and the main forms ROI can take...

  • Usefulness
  • Fulfilment
  • Extended benefits (As coined by Brendan Burchard)
  • Aspirational connection
  • Newness
  • Popularity

But there's an even bigger driver at play that encompasses all of these things - IDENTITY!

Identity plays a huge role in motivating our buying behaviour and really links into that initial emotional buying urge. Think about it... why do you buy and wear the type and style of clothes you do? What do they say about your identity?

Why would you buy a Ford over a BMW? I don't want to get into a debate over stereotypes here but you can see where I'm going with this. 

We are all moving toward and buying things that contribute toward the identity and reputation for being a certain type of person OR the identity that we want to adopt.

Let's bring it back to a service based business now and talk about aspirational identity in context with that.

Let's take the case of the prospect who wants to lose weight, their motivators may be because they want to feel good about themselves (fulfilment). They want to be able to keep up and play with their kids (extended benefits). They admire people like Joe Wicks and perhaps their super healthy friend (aspirational connection). And/or maybe they've seen their peers join a weightloss programme / gym / health kick and they want to be a part of it (popularity).

The identity that perhaps they ultimately want to adopt is... 'healthy, slim and sexy'. They want to be the one who has the willpower to opt out of dessert and choose the apple instead. Perhaps they want to look sexy and slim so when they attend social occasions they look amazing like their other stunning friends. maybe they want to be the yummy healthy mummy who gets stuck in with high intensity activities with their kids and feels comfortable going to the gym with the other parents of the school their kids attend.

This is why getting absolutely clear on your ONE ideal client is so important, because if you don't know this information you'll never be able to dig deep and market to them effectively. 

To write copy or create content that 'speaks' to your ideal client, you have to know them intimately.

The Answer

So if you think you're speaking to the right people, but you're not getting bites, you have to ask yourself this question...

Have I demonstrated the return on investment?
If you've demonstrated the ROI then the next question is, have I demonstrated the right ROI, i.e. do you truly know what motivates your prospects, what they truly desire and what identity they are trying to uphold or achieve?


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About the author 

Jennifer Hall

Jen Hall is Business Clarity Coach for Coaches, Consultants & Experts who want to become Unrivalled Go-To Experts.

Jen not only gets you clear on your micro-niche, message and what makes you unique and desirable, but she helps you to define what makes you an irrefutable offer to the market so you can position yourself as a high-end 'must have' option for your prospects.

She is a Multi-Award Winning Speaker and Best Selling Author of Expert Unrivalled.

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