The Sneaky Sales “Tie Down” of Feature – Benefit – Meaning
by Jim Edwards, The Jim Edwards Method
When I was in the furniture business, I learned from a real old-school salesman named Buck Daniels. I actually dedicated my book to him along with my mom, my dad, my wife, and Russell Brunson.
Buck taught me a selling concept called “tie-downs.” Tie-downs are basically where, when you’re talking to somebody, as soon as whatever it is you’re selling meets one of their requirements, you tie them down to that feature.
Example: “So we can agree that this is the right color?” Yes. Cool.
What do you think about the texture? Good.
What do you think about the fabric? Cool.
It’s got a recliner on one end, that’s good? Yes.
Excellent! So we got the right fabric, we got the right color, and we got the right function here! We are in good shape!
Bottom line: as you tied people down, they started selling themselves! Why? Because what you were selling met their criteria for buying. We were looking for as many different things to tie them to as we could get. Color, size, fabric, function, pattern, manufacturer, price point, all these things.
So I just learned that you want to find as many different reasons people have for buying and tie the purchase to as many of those reasons as possible.
But if you notice a lot of people in their sales copy only harp on one reason to buy. The problem is when people are making a buying decision, if you only harp on one reason (like making money), and that’s not the reason, you’ve got a problem!
Let’s say you were selling a course on how to write and publish a book in seven days.
Some people want to write the book because they think they want to make passive income.
Other people want to write the book because it’s going to give them authority.
Other people want to write a book because it’s going to give them something to sell on the back end of a funnel.
Others want it to set up a book funnel.
Other people want to write a book so that they can have a legacy.
Other people want to use their book as a textbook for a coaching program, or a course they want to teach.
There are a whole bunch of different reasons why somebody wants to buy something.
If you miss that reason, if you never even acknowledge it, you’re going to miss the sale, more often than not! You’re hoping that they will infer why they should buy.
One of the things I have done for years – automatically or just instinctually – is to try to tie different features of my products to different reasons why people buy… and then interpret the meaning of that.
Think of it this way. If you are familiar with the Feature, Benefit, Meaning bullet formula, I want to give you a new way of looking at this tried and true formula.
Take the feature of whatever it does and then tie the payoff/benefit to one of the 10 reasons why people buy.
1 – Make money
2 – Save money
3 – Save time
4 – Avoid effort
5 – Escape mental or physical pain
6 – Get comfort
7 – Increase cleanliness or health
8 – Gain praise
9 – Feel loved
10 – Increased popularity and social status
And, for the M in the FBM formula, the meaning we always come back to is some kind of freedom. Freedom to do what we want… or freedom to avoid what we don’t want.
When creating bullets, we now have a GREAT way to come up with bullets, because you’re just not making stuff up. You can ask which benefit or payoff from the list of 10 makes the most sense to tie with this particular feature.
Then, by tying it to that benefit, what is the ultimate meaning of that feature and benefit together?
This is really cool because this ties together a proven list of things we know motivate people to buy plus we can then automatically translate over into meaning.
I hope this new way of looking at tie-downs and bullets and meaning helps you write some better sales copy!
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