Sell the sizzle, not the steak!

It’s a principle that goes back more than 50 years, but remains applicable to this day- don’t sell the steak, sell the sizzle. I’m going to let Elmer Wheeler explain in this two minute video from 1947 and then we’ll get back to it.

Take a look at the following two pictures and tell me which one would get you to “buy the steak”.

I see far too many marketers and social media folks these days just selling the steak. We sell watches…we sell dongles….we sell milkshakes. Actually, you sell a luxury lifestyle, a technically hip consumer and the delicious drink that tastes home-made and all natural. You’re not just selling a physical product, you’re selling an idea. Owning this product satisfies something that the customer is looking for, answers a question, solves a problem or lets them be a part of something they desire to belong to.

If I purchase this particular watch, I join a group of people who have an appreciation for style and history and luxury. I join a group of people who are willing to spend in a certain price range and if this particular watch is hard to find, I join a group of people who are savvy and know how to find a particular item. As you can see, something as simple as selling a watch is a lot more than just selling a watch and if you can figure out what the sizzle is, you can sell the steak.

Side Note: Why do you think they are called “sizzle reels”? 😉

Drop a comment below if you’ve seen a company doing a particularly good job of selling the sizzle and let me know what they’re doing!

Tai Freligh offers digital marketing and social media services through his company Tai Freligh Consulting, as well as tips, exclusive entertainment interviews and the occasional dog and cat picture. Catch me on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn on my Tai Freligh Consulting company page. You can also drop a connection request to me on my LinkedIn profile.

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