Are Sales Slipping Through Your Fingers? Close the Deal with Logical Benefits

In earlier posts, I talked about how to use emotional benefits to drive reader interest, and gave you some sample headlines you could use as a jumping-off point.

Emotional benefits trigger the “me-want” response. They create desire for our offer. But creating desire isn’t usually enough. Unless you’re selling a purely emotional product like fashion or music, you also have to give your reader enough logical ammunition to justify the purchase to himself.

This is where logical benefits come in. These are all the rational, intelligent reasons we have for buying the stuff we want. You hook prospects with the heart, but you close the deal with the head.

Logical benefits aren’t necessarily about logic

The funny thing about logical benefits is that they’re often important for a very emotional reason. Your customer’s “me-want” reaction is warring with a “what if I’m an idiot?” insecurity about buying the wrong thing, spending too much, or outright getting scammed.

Most people are terrified of feeling foolish. They’re anxious about the possibility of spending money and later feeling like a chump.

Logical benefits help soothe that fear. They provide reassuringly objective reasons to buy, which helps nervous prospects settle down and feel comfortable enough to type in that Paypal password.

Some classic logical benefits that can boost your response

Financial value. This doesn’t work for everything, but when it does, it’s a killer. Spend some time thinking about how to make it work for you.

Figure out a way to assign a dollar amount to the benefit you provide–an amount that’s far greater than your product’s asking price. For example, if you sell a book on time management, quantify that to “my audio program helped this Fortune 500 executive save more than $34,000 a year by eliminating waste and improving productivity.”

Set up a no-brainer equation. $34,000 against a set of $97 CDs makes the decision pretty simple.

Remember, you can compare apples to oranges in persuasive writing. Don’t compare the cost of your $39 home study course to other e-courses; compare it with a $499 in-person seminar that delivers the same results.

Measurable results. This is the obvious one . . . what does your product do? What problems does it solve?

Remember, even though we’re focusing on logic, you’ve still got to translate features into benefits. Warehouses become 196% more efficient when they use your software. Dieters who use your program lose an average of 13 pounds. Golfers who complete your course take an average of 2.4 strokes off their games.

When you’re describing logical benefits, translate anything you can into numbers. (And don’t round them off. Highly specific figures are more convincing.)

Risk reversal. Explicitly offer your concrete reassurance that the customer is not, in fact making a dumb decision. Offer a strong guarantee and a great service promise. Remember, if it can go wrong, it will go wrong. Make yourself very clear: if things don’t work smoothly for the customer, you’ll make it right.

Where do logical benefits go in your copy?

Benefits tied to product features normally make up the meat of your copy. After you’ve led with an emotional hook that gets the reader involved, start stacking up those logical benefits. Make them measurable, and be sure you’re not relying too heavily on features (what your product does) over benefits (what your customer gets).

Testimonials are an especially good way to make a logic-based argument. Instead of trumpeting that 147% improvement yourself, get one of your customers to describe it for you.

Traditionally, you also want a nice cluster of logical benefits at the end of your persuasive copy. This is the right spot for risk reversal points, but it’s also good for some additional results-oriented evidence.

Your prospect wants to say yes, but her hand is wavering as she reaches for that credit card. Logical benefits can give a gentle, reassuring push to get her past the tipping point.

And don’t overlook the chance to provide some additional logical benefits after the sale. Give your customer all the evidence in the world to satisfy herself that she’s made a great decision.

What happens when you don’t provide logical benefits?

You’ll probably still make some sales if your message is completely based in emotion. There are enough impulsive, emotionally-driven folks out there to keep a lot of us in business. The problem is, today’s emotional purchase leads to tomorrow’s regret.

If you haven’t provided logical, rational reasons to buy from you, you’re asking for more than your share of returns and complaints. Remember the prospect insecurity we talked about above? Your product might be outstanding, but if you haven’t sold the brain as well as the heart, your customer will start to second-guess himself. That sets you up for an unacceptable number of returns and service calls, as well as shutting down the potential for repeat and referral business.

If you’re attracting interest but not closing deals, take a look at your logical benefits. Get your readers’ heads and hearts working together to create loyal, happy and profitable customers.

About the Author: Sonia Simone is CMO of Copyblogger Media and founder of Remarkable Communication. She’d love to hang out with you on twitter.

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Reader Comments (25)

  1. says

    Great, great break-down. Providing logical benefits, helps in what I call the “unsupervised thinking time” of your audience when they have landed on the sales/landing page. You want to direct their thinking, while connecting with the reasons they would purchase or seek further. Super post!

    Maria Reyes-McDavis

  2. says

    LOL, Janice, my first draft of this actually said “unless you’re buying Manolos.”

    There are a few logical benefits used to sell high-end luxury consumer goods–typically around quality of construction. But there are definitely some products (iPods, Manolos, music, jewelry, junk food, etc.) that customers need little or no logical justification to buy. They want them, and that is enough.

  3. says

    Chuckling…great minds…

    Wasn’t there a whole ad campaign based on “because I am worth it. ” L’Oreal , I think.

    I like your suggestion of reinforcing logic after the sale as well. We love to feel we got something nifty.

  4. says

    Wasn’t there a whole ad campaign based on “because I am worth it. ” L’Oreal , I think.

    I like your suggestion of reinforcing logic after the sale as well. We love to feel we got something nifty.

  5. says

    Logical benefits may serve not so much to support the emotional reason to buy as to justify it: I know that junk food is disastrous for health but can’t resist it and seek some rational points (e.g. a low price & fast service) as self-justification. (Actually, things aren’t so bad: my chips addiction is almost overcome now).

  6. says

    To provide a different context to Sonia’s excellent presentation think about how a direct mail package works. Each element has a primary communication objective. The outer envelope is the first impression / invitation, the brochure provides the emotional presentation and the letter presents the logical argument. Finally, the response device reinforces the benefits (emotional and logical) to reassures the consumer, punches the offer and provides all the info they need to take action.

  7. says

    Often people need to justify their purchases to others besides themselves. You can’t tell your wife or your boss that you just can’t resist the bling. Logical benefits are stored in memory to use in self-defense.

  8. says

    @Michael- LOL. FLowers work too. :)

    @ James- I like that context. It’s a very physical, tangible reminder of form and functions that convert to action.

    Bookmarking this one Sonia.

  9. says

    @Helen, a little justification is a beautiful thing, isn’t it?

    @James, I love it. And all of those pieces can be used in an online context just as effectively. That’s one of the things I love about autoresponders–I can present the pieces sequentially without overwhelming the reader. I think part of why people hate long form sales pages is they’re too damned LONG. But the prospect still needs us to hit all of those points to make their decision.

    @Michael Martine, absolutely. Believe me, I had those logical benefits lined up when I pitched my boss on sending me to SOBCon.

    I’m honored, @Janice, thank you.

  10. says

    An amazing post. Sales copy is one of the hardest things to learn for most people… I guess after hundreds of sales letters I might be popping out amazing pitches.

    I have been writing my 4th sales copy for the past 2 months – still not feeling it. This post just refreshed some stuff in my head 😉

  11. says

    Alexander, I find that I know stuff but I keep re-getting it. I’ll implement an idea and then in a project down the line I see how I can *really* implement it. “The basics” are easy to pick up but it takes a long time to really implement them on a deep level.

  12. says

    Excellent point about testimonials. I have been thinking a lot about how to incorporate them lately. I am finding that they are important – even on a resume!

  13. says

    The only thing I would add is that I don’t think that stated logical benefits are often separated from the emotional appeal.

    I read an excellent quote on another blog that states,
    “When buyers buy, it isn’t because their objections have been met, or they have been persuaded by rational arguments. It’s because they’ve gotten comfortable with the decision . . . [A prospect’s] need is not to make a rational decision–their need is to feel comfortable with a rational decision they have to make.”

    Logical benefits are not appeals to “logic”–they are an emotional appeal to the buyer’s sense of receiving value. It’s about the comfort level of the prospect.

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