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Want versus Need

Written by: OneCoach

Let's say, you're car breaks down and you're forced to walk about a mile to reach a service station. The road you're walking down is desolate and deserted. There's no one around and you haven't seen anyone drive by, and no homes are nearby.

Suddenly you notice this pile of money on the side of the road. There's no visible identification indicating who the money belongs to, and you later learn that no one has filed a missing money report. Even the police tell you the money is yours since you found it. Do you keep the money? Most people would, of course. And rightfully so. So you're telling me then that you have no problem accepting free money... right?

OK... does this familiar? There is the Geico gecko you see all the time on TV. I'm also sure you're familiar with their USP... their Unique Selling Proposition. “A Free 15 Minute Phone Call Could Save You 15% Or More On Your Car Insurance”. So here's my question... how many times do you call Geico every year for your free quote? I mean, if you have no problem accepting free money, and isn't that in essence what Geico is offering you... free money?

If you can call them for free, and ask them what they would charge to insure you, and they have lower rates than what you're currently paying, isn't that the same as free money? Of course it is. And obviously you NEED insurance... right? It's required by law in most states for your car, and by your lender for your home. So how many times per year do you call? You don't, do you?

OK... let's change the situation somewhat. You're sitting at home one day relaxing, and you receive a rather formal looking letter from FedEx addressed specifically to you. It's from Geico, your insurance company. You open it and in the letter you read this...

Dear Paul (Frank, Peggy, Hannes…),

It has been brought to our attention by one of your neighbors (who will remain anonymous) that you have been seen speeding and driving both recklessly and erratically on several occasions through your neighborhood. This greatly increases our exposure as your automobile insurer, so based on this information, we are sorry to inform you that effective this Friday, we will be increasing your auto insurance premiums by 15%.

What's your next move? Think you'll be on the phone faster than the speed of light? Why are you motivated to call Geico now when all along they've been offering you free money? Are you starting to see the huge difference between wants versus needs?

Legally, you're required to have homeowners insurance to satisfy your lenders requirements on your mortgage, and your state requires that you have minimum liability automobile insurance coverage. That means you NEED insurance... but you don't WANT insurance, so you don't call for a quote. You can't be bothered, because there is no hot button issue at stake here. There is NO emotional stimulus for you to act on this ad. In short, there simply is NO pain.

Prospects will do anything to avoid pain, but pleasure does nothing to motivate them. I know that sounds crazy, but that's the way it is. If I offer you a pill that cures cancer for $10, and you don't have cancer at the time, you won't buy it. If you have cancer, you'll pay me a million dollars for it.

Most of the advertising you see today promises pleasure. It focuses on the positive side of the product or service that's being offered. And that's why most marketing fails. That's why you haven't gone to Geico for your free quote.

But the letter was different, wasn't it? It created a negative situation, and in doing so, hit a hot button with you. Obviously the company is basing its decision to increase your rates on hearsay, and you immediately recognize this as a completely unfair assessment. And then they add insult to injury by increasing your rates by 15%. The letter made you WANT to call them... in fact, wild horses couldn't stop you from calling them. Right?

Now... what if you could create a marketing program that worked exactly like that letter. Not by threatening your prospects with higher costs, but by hitting similar hot button issues that create strong emotions in their life?

Contact me at info@merhan-coach.com if you want to learn more.