Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Product Differentiation Pressure: Do features matter?

Yes and No. It's the great contradiction of product differentiation, features mean nothing, yet features mean everything. Let me explain.

Features mean nothing - Customers (except a few really geeky early adopters which are not subject to the laws of nature:) don't buy features, they buy benefits. Or even more specifically, they buy either to put money in their pockets or to sleep at night. Nobody ever slept because their had a new feature. But lotsa people sleep well when they solve problems. Features don't matter!

Features mean everything - Let's go backwards here. Customers have problems. Product deliver benefits that solve problems. Features are the engines that make the benefit delivery possible.

Benefits that I can deliver that my competition can't are the crux of high PDP™ (Product Differentiation Pressure!) Unique features that are the engines for these specific benefits are the key to LASTING Differentiation!

Oh, and the customer better Care about these benefits. And Care means they will change their decision to get this!

Ask yourself, have I identified a set of unique features that create one or more unique benefits that I deliver better than my competition, and that a set of buyers Care about. If the answer is yes, you are on the way to high PDP.

Next blog I'll take a look at an example from my past...


  1. But product features can deliver the benefits. We have some pictures of margarine in the office to remind us of how it is done ina really difficult market.

  2. Trampoline Man, yes, features do delivewr beneifts, agreed. But margarine is V different than enterprise software products that I am involved in...similar, but different... :) Margarine is all about squeezing the margin (pun intended) where my business is about capturing large competitive price difference through business value...