Ease of Use Confusion

Every week we read about dozens of HR service providers and the products and services they sell. Many of them are established companies with strong brand equity like BrassRing, Kronos, Harris Rothenberg International, and Ultimate Software. Others are the new kids on the block fighting for air and market share. As we've stated before, the human capital industry is on the verge of unprecedented growth, and the HR vendors are poised for success.

But no matter how big or small your company is, no matter how established you are in your industry, and no matter what you're selling, one thing we know for sure is that you have to do more than just persuade your prospects that your products and services are solid.

You have to show them that they are easy to use. Otherwise, they most likely aren't buying.

After reading an article by Sean D'Souza, who marries age-old psychology and modern technology on his website PsychoTactics(TM), we started thinking about what we do to show our HR Marketer prospects how easy it is to use our services. It's a constant work in progress, but fortunately according to Sean's suggestions, we're on the mark.

Are you?

Here are three important steps he outlines in his article entitled The Second Reason Why Customers Don't Buy posted recently on MarketingProfs.com:

"Stop what you're doing right now. Have a good look at the product or service you're selling, and do a simple audit:

1. Does your product or service have a system where a potential client can literally fill in the blanks and then use? Or is your product/service more of a concept that a client would struggle to implement and finally just give up using? Make your product/services as idiot-proof as you possibly can. Rework them if you need to. Or have a product/service with an instruction guide/workbook/standby help system to make sure the customer gets it.

2. Use testimonials that show definite proof of easy usage. Your testimonials should demonstrate ease of use and a lack of hard work involved. We live in an instant-gratification world, and people want to see testimonials that prove beyond a doubt that the product or service isn't some "nose to the grindstone" system.

3. And finally...the obvious: tell your customer how easy it is to operate or implement your product or service. Also tell that customer how you have a backup system in the form of a guide/workbook/standby help that they can call on in case of an emergency. Most businesses have an easy-to-use system, but never tell their customers about it."

(By the way, we never heard from any of you about last week's blog on whether or not your organization uses an integrated search engine marketing strategy, what kinds of search engine marketing you’re doing, and what kind of results you’ve gotten. Maybe that's because search engine marketing still isn't very easy to use...)