If your business is based around a product – whether this is something tangible, like a door lock, or intangible, like software – you may be communicating with your customers in the wrong way. People buy products, obviously, but only when these products offer a solution to a problem they are having. In other words, your customers probably aren’t interested in your product, but rather the solution that it provides. If you’re not communicating this solution in your marketing and PR activities, it may be time to rethink your approach.
Solution marketing takes a product and explains how it will help the customer. It’s consumer-focused, rather than product-focused. It’s about end-user benefits, not product features. It doesn’t just consider the product, but the entire sector that it’s a part of, including industry landscape and trends. Whether working with an in-house team or a marketing agency, a solution-orientated marketing strategy is typically a company-wide undertaking.
Firstly, you’ll need to define your solution, through researching your service offering and undertaking a full messaging and marketing audit. Try to get inside the minds of your customers, thinking about:
- What problem your business solves
- What value you provide
- How your product/s meet the needs of users
- How you can make their life easier
- What you want to tell your customers
- How you want them to perceive you
Once you’ve defined your solution, it’s time to communicate it. Begin by ensuring that your website and content supports your messaging. Any blogs, brochures or whitepapers need to communicate the problem that your business and product solves, as do your social media channels. Once this groundwork is in place, there are numerous ways to continue engaging and nurturing customers, whether this is through an editorial feature article, email marketing campaign or advertising.
The primary challenges of solution marketing lie in researching, planning and setting up the framework: it requires in-depth research and consistent, organisation-wide implementation in order to be effective.
Solution marketing is particularly effective for businesses that have a complicated proposition to communicate to customers, such as technology and engineering organisations. Customers who aren’t technically-minded won’t bother to spend time learning about the product, or the science behind it – they just want to know how it will help them.
Synopsys, a global electronics company, is one such organisation that knows the value of solution marketing. The technology products that Synopsys develops are highly specialised, and therefore difficult for the average consumer to understand. Its marketing activities focus on the benefits that the company provides – such as advancing smartphone capabilities whilst continuing to keep handsets at a practical size. Learn how we helped Synopsys communicate its solutions here.
Whether you’re just starting out or in need of a different approach, we will bring a fresh perspective to your marketing and PR. Contact us today to discuss how we can help.