No One Wants To Buy Your Product – This Is What They’ll Pay For…

Calvin Klein

“The only way to advertise is by not focusing on the product.” – Calvin Klein, Born Nov. 19, 1942.

The art and skill and magic and OOMPH of writing promotions comes from the stuff you do that has NOTHING to do with the product itself.

The product is just a token of value. It carries the true benefit of ownership into the buyer's life. But the benefit is never just the object itself. The object itself is merely a bonus.

If people were going to make buying decisions based on the product, CK ads would be about cotton and cut.

But instead his ads are about sexy bodies and vulnerable faces shot in stark photography.

There is so much more to an offer than the product. So many more things that are EXTERNAL to the product determine how we perceive its RELATIVE value:

The maker,
The pedigree,
The history,
The story,
The model,
The prior buyer,
The enemy,
The times,
The industry,
The market,
The nation,
The news,
The family,
The spouse,
The kids,
The parents,
The boss,
The employees,
The friends,
The neighbors…

The list is endless.

All of these things encompass the story that the buyer gets to adopt as their own when they purchase. It literally can change the way people interpret the narrative of their own lives.

It’s not a product, it’s an expression of identity.

It can change the role they play – not just for themselves, but the way others react to them as their plot progresses. Or at least, that is the hope they have when they buy.

This is, of course, only the internal dialogue. Most people won’t notice because they’re too busy having their own internal dialogues concerned with what everyone else thinks of them.

In the end, it’s just a pair of jeans. They cover your legs.

But try selling that…

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