What are you actually selling? [product]

A key component to your business is your product or service. (Yeah, I know… it seems like an obvious statement. Like, duh! Stick with me!) You’re probably thinking it is THE key component. ‘My business is my product!’ And yes, it’s uber important, but just one of the keys. We’ll talk about the other key components later. (Also, check out this on the why behind your business. Hint: It’s a key component!)

Today, I want to go deeper into the product/service component of your business. There is much more happening than just the ring a jewelry designer sells.

So… what are you actually selling?

I know you probably think it’s your jewelry or your time or your whatever. You think it’s the tangible thing. Partially, you’re right. But really, you are selling what the product does for your customer… the problem it solves, the feeling it gives. Now, what do you think you are really selling them? More time, self-expression, a sense of belonging, what?

When in doubt, go deeper. It’s really about understanding how your product or service affects the life of your ideal target market.

Try asking yourself these questions to get your mind going deeper…

  1. What problem(s) does my product/service solve?
  2. What human needs are attached to my product/service? (Physiological, Safety, Love/Belonging, Esteem, Self-Actualization)
  3. What values, beliefs, philosophies are connected to my product/service?
  4. What emotional, nostalgic, ego, etc connections relate to my product/service?

Don’t worry about coming up with the right or wrong answers. Just let a stream of consciousness come. Whatever pops into your mind… write them down. Just riff, jam and slowly take it deeper.

Put yourself in the shoes of your ideal target market and go back through these questions. This will allow you to change perspectives and take it deeper.

Still not sure what I’m talking about? I got you! Let’s do an example together…

The business: A fashion illustrator who sells prints of the illustrations.

Problems solving. No empty walls. Personalized desk at work. Inspiration. Self-expression. Being an early adopter of this specific artist (I’m in the know. I know what’s cool.)

Human needs: Belonging (I want to belong to the tribe of people who believe the same thing, have the same values and philosophies), Esteem (There is attachment to myself and how I view myself. I see this piece of art as an expression of who I am.)

Values, beliefs, and philosophy: Place a high value on art, fashion and design…Specifically the art and beauty elements seen in this illustrator’s style. Believe in having a beautiful and well-designed environment/space.

Emotional connection: Dreams (who I want to be is represented in the strong female figure illustrated), Nostalgia (The Parisian feel illustration makes me remember being in Paris and connects me to those memories.)

*Side Note: The ‘I’ is that of the consumer.

For this example, the artist could go deeper in each section and speak to their individual style of art. Why is the style different and why do the consumers connect with it?


Now it’s your turn! Go make yourself a nice cup of tea and journal your answers.

Have a question about your specific product? Comment below or send me an email at hello@awilde.co. Or join me for a Jam Session event on April 8th and ask me in person. Check out the details here.


P.S. If you are in San Diego, I’m doing a Jam Session event on April 8th. I would love to have you there. Check out the details here.


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