Using or at least thinking about ‘that feeling when’ instead of just talking about specifications, features and benefits can help prospective clients and customers understand why they should care about your product or service.
You don’t want to find a family solicitor, but perhaps you’ll remember the last time you tried a ‘do-it-yourself kit’, or downloaded a ‘free template’, and decide that you’ll trust a professional to write your will.
You don’t want to buy yet another kitchen appliance, but being able to make the most amazing and memorable hot chocolate at home, is compelling.
You don’t want to buy a car key battery, but a long-life one seems like a good idea, and worth paying extra for.
Getting all emotional
Whether it’s a good or bad feeling, a welcome or unwelcome feeling, something that happens all the time, or hopefully never, there’s plenty of ways of using emotion to help describe your products or service.
You want people to feel something, whether you sell staples or supercars.
Here we go. Some ideas.
You know that feeling when…
You come in from work to see your mum’s birthday card on the side, ready to be posted, but her birthday’s tomorrow?
Nope – me neither!
You just don’t want that cup of coffee to end?
Whether it’s catching up with friends, or to warm us up after a cold or wet walk, a coffee or hot chocolate can be much more than just a drink.
You’ve just finished the best packet of crisps ever?
Sometimes you can’t beat a packet of crisps, or a sandwich, or a chocolate bar. Rarely get the same feeling after eating an apple or a stick of celery though.
The children have argued all weekend, and you can’t wait to go back to work for a rest?
Oh yes, I’ve definitely been there!
You wear that expensive suit/dress for the first time, and it makes the right impression?
Whether it’s an interview, client meeting, date or night out (not recently then!), looking good and feeling good can give you extra confidence.
Your kitchen is ankle-deep in water and no emergency plumber seems to be answering their phone?
Hopefully, you’ll never be in this situation, but just thinking about it makes me panic.
Your favourite song comes on the radio, and it reminds you of a certain friend?
Perhaps it takes you back to your youth, the birth of your child, a holiday, or meeting your partner
Your car key battery dies and you have to lock the car manually, in the rain, with a tired, screaming toddler in your arms?
If you’re a parent, you’ve definitely had this sort of experience.
You taste that first drink on a Friday night?
The one you’ve looked forward to, since about 9:15 on Monday morning. That drink.
You notice a toothpaste stain on your jumper, on the train to work?
And it’s too cold to take your jumper off, and you’ve got a meeting.
Your phone rings, and it’s your child’s school?
And you’re thinking how badly are they hurt? A thousand scenarios go through your mind, work, hospital, traffic…and then you hear that they just forgot their PE kit.
You can tell spring is on the way?
There are some flowers popping up, it’s a bit warmer, and not quite as dark when you leave home in the morning or work in the evening, and you find yourself thinking about summer holidays.
You’ve got some great news, and you can’t wait to share it?
It could be a promotion, news of a pregnancy, wedding, or new business venture. Or perhaps it’s just there’s a new coffee shop opening.
You’ve got something to look forward to?
A holiday, your new business, a new arrival in your family, a new start. It’s an exciting time.
You feel your phone slide out of your hand towards the pavement?
Time stands still…and then it lands, screen down, onto a stone. You bend down to pick it up and you look at the screen and you’re relieved/mad…
You don’t know how you’ll ever get that mark off the wall?
How did it get there? The children can’t reach that high. Obviously, you wouldn’t have done it, so how did it get there? What is it? And how will you get it off?
You see your child learn to do something for themselves?
That sense of pride, sharing their joy of accomplishment. Realising perhaps you are a good parent after all. That encourages you to try again if you don’t succeed the first time. That things are hard sometimes. But in the end, it’s worth it.
You achieve something you’ve always wanted to?
Passing your driving test. Starting your own business. Walking out of a toxic relationship. Going to university. Finding your perfect job. Could be anything, but it makes you feel proud of yourself.
You help somebody else achieve something they never thought they could do?
Your help and advice, and experience, and encouragement meant they were able to do what they wanted to do. And it’s partly down to you.
You finally finish tidying/organising/sorting out you clothes/garage/front room?
Eugh. We’ve all been (trying to avoid) Kondo’ing our homes over the last couple of years, but she’s right. It does make us feel better. Maybe getting rid of some excess physical stuff can help get rid of some excess emotional stuff too.
You know something other people don’t?
Maybe it’s not a big secret, or something earth-shattering. But maybe you’ve got a date, or a new client, or the children are staying with their grandparents this weekend. That sort of thing.
You get an unexpected delight?
A funny-shaped crisp, you find a fiver in a coat pocket, you get a seat on the bus or train. It doesn’t have to be a big thing, but you’ve still ‘won’!
It wasn’t as bad as you thought it would be?
That medical appointment, meeting, helping your child with their maths homework, giving up, or starting something beneficial to your health. It went OK. Perhaps nothing better, but it could have been a lot worse.
The weather changes just before you need to go out?
Does it stop raining, or start raining? Do you mind? Do you prepare for rain, but hope for sun?
The car won’t start in the morning, when you’re already late for work?
Oh, we’ve all experienced this. Where does the bus go from? Which bus do I even need? How long will a taxi take? I said there was something wrong with the car. That sort of feeling.
That health scare you had has cleared up?
That? Ha, it was nothing. You’re just getting older, or are a hypochondriac, or did the right thing and went to the doctor. Still, you can breathe again now. It’s not cancer.
How to use these types of feelings
What about when you need people to act, or show them you know how they feel?
- Remember that time you didn’t get the car looked at, and it wouldn’t start on the day of your interview? That’s why your car needs an annual inspection.
- Remember how you felt when you discovered their affair? We’re here to help you.
- Remember how jealous you felt after your friends had booked their summer holidays? Why not book yours first this year?
- Remember the best hot chocolate you ever had? The smell? The taste? The warmth? What if you could make it at home?
- Remember when the nice HMRC lady rang to tell you your company would be audited, and you didn’t know where to start? That’s why you need an accountant.
- Remember when you passed your driving test, and your first car gave you freedom and independence? That’s what we do for your business.
- Remember when you said that you’d rather rewrite the staff handbook than go to that meeting? And your boss obliged? That’s why you need to outsource your HR.
- Remember when you dropped your phone? That’s why you need a screen protector.
“Don’t you just hate it when…?”
“Do you know how I found out?”
“Can you guess what she said next?”
That sort of approach is how the clickbait list is so effective.
“…Number 6 will amaze you, and nobody gets number 10 right.”
First published on writeagain.co.uk