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No Pain, No Business Gain: How to Market to Your Client’s Pain Points

MyCity4Her realizes that marketing is something all business owners need to do, decision makers whether they own the business or not – are also faced with this continuous need. However, everyone isn’t always sure the best way to go about it. We thought we’d give Katrina Wagner, Creative Director and Founder of Graphic Beans, one of the Greater Baltimore area’s premier web design firms the opportunity to address the issue and here’s the wisdom she’s sharing…

Why Marketing to Your Client’s Pain Points is a Winning Strategy

5-14-2013As humans, we spend our lives seeking pleasure and avoiding pain. The same is true in web marketing.

Have you ever had a brain-splitting migraine you can’t seem to shake? A dark room, a cold compress and a double espresso later, you’re off to the drugstore. Here you find shelves of pain meds advertising a fast fix for Every-Bad-Feeling-You-Could-Possibly-Have: Headaches with flu symptoms. Seasonal allergy head colds. Headaches with upset stomach, restless leg syndrome, excessive perspiration and a bad case of the blinks… You get the idea.

But what you have is a migraine. Rather than a cure-all, what you need is the one pill that will stop your migraine pain. And when you find that medicine, the one that speaks directly to the pain you have, you’re going to pull out your wallet and buy.

It’s the same with your potential clients.

Whether they know it or not, your clients have pain. They need a problem solved, and they need it now. And when they find that one perfect solution, they are willing to pay the price—your price—to make their pain go away.

Now, it’s true the word “pain” has a negative connotation. But there’s nothing icky or manipulative about speaking to your client’s pain. Think of it as being clear, direct and intuitive. You are showing your prospects that you understand and empathize with what they’re going through—that you actually “get” their frustration and fear. By doing so, you are building a rapport with them that may later lead to a relationship.

Here are some tips for marketing to your clients’ pain:

1) In your web marketing materials, you want to speak specifically to your clients’ pain—right from the beginning. That means on your website home page, or the first place potential clients interface with your business. Ask them a question about what life is like with their pain. Show them an image conveying what this pain looks like. This is how you get their attention, and make them want to learn more.

2) In some cases, your clients know they have a challenge, but they may not know exactly what it is or how to fix it. This is where you come in. Find out what their actual pain points are, and call attention to those points in your web marketing. Describe their life with the pain, and what it’s costing them in terms of time, money and frustration. Again, the right image conveying their pain can do wonders here. Show them that you understand their challenge, where it stems from, and how it may impact their business and bottom line.

3) How do you know what your potential clients’ pain points are? Do your market research. Talk with your potential clients in informational interviews. Let them know upfront that this isn’t a sales call, but a way for you to gain ideas for how to do your business better. Ask them specific questions, and listen for the words they use to describe what’s bugging them. These are the same words you want to use in your web marketing language.

Other ideas for identifying pain points: Find out the terms people use when searching online for your product or service. Or better yet, look at the search terms people used that led them to your website. (If you’re not sure how to research these search terms, ask us at Graphic Beans—we can generate a keyword report for you.) Be sure to use these keywords on your site and in your web marketing materials.

4) Once you establish that the pain exists, help your clients envision what life—and their business—would be like without that struggle. Describe for them how much more time, money, energy and pleasure they will have once their pain is gone. Include an image of the pleasure they seek. And then describe how your product, service and value is the best way for them to get rid of their pain, right away.

If you can address what it is your potential clients are most struggling with, and offer them the one service or product that will solve that problem, chances are they will choose your business as their “drug of choice” every time.

Are you in pain because your online marketing isn’t winning you clients? Talk to us at We’ve got the remedy for you.

Katrina Wagner is the Owner and Creative Principal of Graphic Beans, a Maryland based web design firm in the US that services clients all over the country. To find out more about Katrina and her company click here.


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