Wait, What are Pain Points—Why do They Matter?
Pain points, as they’re called in the world of advertising, are industry tools that can help you to find your ideal consumer. They minimize the risk of you investing into false leads. This term—pain points—doesn’t relate to pain in as drastic of a way as it might sound. Pain is what we say as a label for the specific challenges that we believe our leads have. Since we’re marketers, the pain must also relate to a solution that we’re offering to our leads.
These points rarely relate to physical pain. They also need to align with your brand.
For example, if one of your leads is unhappy, their unhappiness doesn’t mean that you should talk about it. Unless you’re a therapist who works to build the happiness of their clients, unhappiness is something that your product isn’t equipped to solve. Pain points, even more, aren’t limited to the problems, mistakes or flaws that our consumers live with. Pain also defines each challenge as it relates to a product or solution.
Here’s a list of pain points that collate to real solutions that a business might offer:
- The owner of a new house finds a leak in the roof that’s dripping water on his bed. That’s the pain. Only handymen and plumbers can speak about this pain, for they fix leaking roofs.
- A woman adopts a dog to find out that it gets sick from any diet it eats. That’s a pain. Only a qualified veterinarian can speak about that pain, for they are certified.
- A group of kids are idle and thus do destructive things for fun. This is a neighborhood’s pain. The parents’ solution can be to hire a coach to get the kids into sports.
Finding the Core Pain of Your Target Audience
Now that we have an understanding of what pain points are, we need to perfect our use of them. Marketers possess a great deal of power in this regard. They often understand things about their leads that those leads fail to recognize about themselves. We use the ailments of our leads as a way of connecting with them. We don’t, however, use their issues to mislead them. We don’t make false claims based on their personal struggles.
Think about having a close, human connection with them. This requires trust. We gravitate to those who are also similar to us. Having a grasp of what your leads are living with helps you to see their mentality and way of thinking. You can even use pain points to invent solutions for society. Simply find something that plagues us. Next, look for profitable ways of solving it. Let’s now look at ways of finding the pain points of your target audience.
Begin with Reverse Engineering
Every marketing campaign should begin with research. Let’s first work to uncover who your ideal consumer is. You can do this by reverse engineering your product. Not all businesses begin by going through the proper steps of generating ideas, applying market research and then testing out models. It’s likely that you created your solution without foretelling exactly who it’s best for. Now try to make a clear correlation with your solution.
What pain points would a person have if they bought your product?
For example, we’re more successful at selling coats when our buyers live in cold climates.
Paint a Clear Image in Your Consumer Profile
Understanding the consumer is required when building a good marketing strategy. Painting a specific image of the challenges they live with can be done through a consumer profile. Start yours as a simple document. This profile holds an “ideal image” of the people who’re likely to buy from you. You want to start with creating a persona before you compile your research. That persona and its pain points help you to find the specific people that you need to market to.
Pry into the Lives of Your Leads: Ask Them Questions
Some of you have marketing funnels and active campaigns already in place. Go directly to your audience to ask them about what’s important or what’s lacking. You don’t want to explain to your leads what pain points are or why you’re asking about them. Nevertheless, ask questions that guide your leads into revealing what is or isn’t working for them. Simply read in between the lines of the answers they give you. Use their answers to understand their pains.
Only Select the Problems that You Can Solve
Discovering every obstacle that exists in your consumer’s life is important, but you want to only use the pains that your product solution actually solves. We have the power to draw people into our message, yet this power must be used in a trustworthy way. Avoid making promises that you cannot live up to. Your leads will notice when you draw them in on one promise but present them with a different solution than they had initially imagined. This will cost your brand in the end.
Out of the pains that you discover, reduce your strategy to the ones that you can handle.
Imagine if Their Lives Became Worst
You can influence your consumer by leading them to envision their own futures. What if they keep putting off a solution that they desperately need? Encouraging your leads to foresee a potential, looming disaster can be an effective way of getting them to take action. They may live with challenges today, but no one wants to see their own circumstances getting worse. Use the future to persuade them. Just be sure that your message aligns to a solution that’s being revealed.
Know the Difference Between Sympathy and Empathy
Knowing the difference between sympathy and empathy will help you to be more strategic. What these words have in common is the action of reasoning with someone else’s pain. It’s important not to assume that you’re empathizing when you’re really sympathizing. Business owners who, for example, have lived with the challenges that their leads have can empathize. You’re only sympathizing if you’re speculating about how someone’s pain feels.
List Their Category of Pain
Consider categorizing pain as physical, psychological, social, financial or spiritual. Doing so gets you over the limitations of the term “pain” as used in marketing. You will more accurately align effective solutions to the needs of your target audience. Improve the influence of your message by eliminating other pains from your research. You only want to deal with categories that you have expertise within. You also want to work with a specific idea.
Stay away from general ailments.
Cross Promote and Collaborate
Work with other brands in your industry. Find businesses that will benefit by having a partnership with you. It’s the successful businesses in your industry that you have something to learn from. Try to unravel how they perceive the same consumer that you’re targeting. Share your experiences, theories and future plans with business owners who you can trust. Do so in hopes of learning about your audience.
Ask if the Required Change is Too Much
Uncovering the pains of your target audience may lead you into life-changing solutions. You have to ask yourself, however, “How much work will they be required to undergo?” If you believe that they need to sacrifice too much, then isolate those who need less work. Weigh out the effort that’s required in making a change, for some solutions are painful. Ensure that your solution is one that’s easy to apply.
Confirm that You Have a Decisive Picture
Your research must result in a specific persona. The objective is to be decisive. A “general idea” about your persona is not enough data to rely on within a marketing funnel. Be specific. You will not find a product on this planet that’s suitable for everyone—except water. Even still, consumers prefer one bottled brand over another. Having an exact outline of who you need to invest in leverages your work.
Uncover a decisive consumer persona by identifying the right pain points.