Feel the Pain

Was reminded recently that it’s all about the pain.

The pain of having a computer crash on you (which is a lot less than 30 years ago (imagine your computer crashing every other day?)).

An application crash right in the middle of your book (or two page policy update).

You discovering that the car dealership five miles away was $1,000 cheaper than the one down the block.

Oh wait, how about this one? Dropping your phone and the screen cracking?!

And so on — you get it, yes?

It sucks when something happens to you. But, you remember it, and you try to either fix it yourself (put a case around your phone or save your document every five minutes) or purchase something to fix it.

Everything that you market must be built on pain! No pain, no gain.

Oh, I can hear some of you now — “Wait, you can sell on enjoyment!” And you are right — it’s called legal/illegal drugs and alcohol. If you are into the new Pot stores or own a bar, may God bless you. If you are into selling illegal drugs and killing people, then, you aren’t reading this (thank God!!!).

So, pain. Everything you write, talk about, market — talk about the pain. The shirt getting dirty; the passwords being remembered; the phone case that saves your phone under 100 feet of water, and so on.

Oh, I can hear some of you go in this direction — “Wait, what about Progressive or Liberty Mutual insurance (or any of the others)?” Ohhhh, that’s a good one. That is “selling” on emotion, funny, laughter. Aren’t they great? Don’t they make you laugh?

Idiot — they aren’t selling because of any of that. They are selling on price. Pure and simple. The most basic and first tenant of any marketing plan — price, price, price. They all say “We have the lowest price in one form or another” — without saying we are the cheapest. The pain is the expense, but, with a bandage on it.

Remember insurance advertisements where they would show a car wreck, or whatever — and that’s how they sold. I believe Allstate is the only one that is doing that right now, but, they ARE doing it with emotion and a bandage — we laugh as we see the guy drive his car through the house, and then the “award” sitting in the museum, and the guy saying “We’ve seen it so we cover it” or something like that. A bit different than “cheapest”; going in the direction of “no matter who you are or what you do, we will cover you — at least the first time, after that, we are jacking up your rates”, (that last part is unsaid).

It is great if you can market without showcasing the pain. Like some of the mentions above. If you can wrap it in humor or a story that is not personal, so much the better.

But, pain is relatable. We’ve been there or know someone that has OR we can easily relate to it.

When all else fails, market to the pain — I guarantee that you will succeed — and if you don’t, your product/service sucks.




Love marketing. Enjoy trance. Past-Volunteer fire fighter. Lucky enough to have traveled the world and gained experiences that I like to share.

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Blaine Phelps

Blaine Phelps

Love marketing. Enjoy trance. Past-Volunteer fire fighter. Lucky enough to have traveled the world and gained experiences that I like to share.

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