Do People Choose Features or do Features Choose People?

Classically, we think of product features providing benefits that consumers weigh and contrast relative to competing products in making a buying decision.

What happens when you turn this around? How do your product features act to select the customers you get? Here’s a great case in point.

A couple of good friends and colleagues of mine, Jerry West and David Bullock, are putting on their third seminar in a series they call The SEO Rainmaker. It’s just a couple weeks away and if you can arrange to attend I highly recommend it, but the point of this post is to point out how two features of the event served to pre-select the audience they obtained.

First, the event is on Thursday and Friday, not the weekend. If you guessed that they got push-back on this point … you’d be right! But this also stands to pre-select for people that have already left the J.O.B. and graduated to being the boss. Speaking from that vantage point, I don’t want seminars on the weekend because I already work long enough hours as it is thank you! I view the weekday schedule as a positive, not a negative.

Benefit is just a synonym for "positive feature" and positive is in the eye of the beholder. What is positive for one group may be negative for another and you have decide which group you appealing to.

Second, the day is only scheduled from 10 to 4. Is this positive or negative? For the person that expects to have their butt planted in a chair and their mind fed information then it’s a negative — they want the day scheduled from 9 to 9 to "get their money’s worth". But is that who you want?

At the latest three day StomperNet Live event I had one-on-one meetings with partners and long term StomperNet members booked for so much of the weekend that I missed most of the show. Ask any long-time business person and you will hear the same story — it is the contacts you make and the side conversations you have that make live events pay for the travel.

The value of the instruction you get at these events you could (mostly) get from online delivery. It is the personal interaction you get with the organizers and other attendees can not be had any other way.

By the way, a third friend and colleague, Paul Lemberg is guest speaking for Jerry and David and I may drive up for Friday afternoon just for fun so if you can make it, I’ll see you there, but please don’t "take vacation" to come. 😉