In order to determine the value of your goods or services to your chosen target market, you need to do some analysis. A great way to start is by determining the features and benefits of your chosen product or service.
A feature is defined as an attribute that exists in the product so it can perform its function. Let’s say you are selling physical goods such as umbrellas. A feature of an umbrella could be the fabric that covers the frame, which is ultra lightweight and waterproof.
A benefit is defined as an outcome a customer is looking for to meet their needs. With the feature we just described for the umbrella, a customer would be seeking a benefit from this fabric such as having an umbrella that dries very quickly.
If you’re dealing with intangible services, features and benefits work the same way. For example, if your small business offers your customers personalized services, a feature of the services you provide would be a customized approach to meeting your customer’s needs. A benefit of the personalized services you provide would be giving your customers more value and quality in their experience with you.
Therefore, features and benefits exist when you identify the needs of your chosen target market segment, and meet those needs with your product or service both from the customer’s perspective (by the value it provides) and your company’s perspective (by how it meets your financial and marketing objectives).
This is just a small sampling of what should be involved in your product or service strategy, but it’s a great start to identifying how to meet your customer’s needs and stand out in the marketplace.