The Concept of the Star and the Supporting Cast When Creating Uniqueness

The Concept of the Star and the Supporting Cast When Creating Uniqueness

Every movie you’ve ever watched has a common factor.

You have a star. And you have the supporting cast.

The star gets all the lines. The star gets to do most of the work. The star is the focus. So what does the supporting cast do? The supporting cast comes in from time to time. They have smaller roles, fewer lines. And they have to do less work.

Your sales page is a lot like that

On your sales page, you’ll have the features and benefits of a product or service. And you’ll have bullets. And this is your supporting cast. They highlight the things that the customer needs to know about the product or service. But then there’s the star. That star is the uniqueness of the product or service. That star gets a lot more space. A lot more explanation. And in fact, the script writer (that’s you) may re-write the entire story to make that star shine.

When you understand the concept of the star and the supporting cast, you don’t go nuts with your uniqueness.

You realise that each of them have a role to play. And that while getting to uniqueness does involve a ton of slaughter and sacrifice, it’s not that you’re getting rid of all the benefits and features. It’s not that your bullets are totally worthless. It’s just that they cannot occupy the lead role. That lead role has been taken.

You can go right ahead and give every bullet, feature and benefit a small role to play, and they’ll play it well. But leave the big chunk to the uniqueness.

But let’s take an example (even if it’s slightly flawed)

If you ask anyone why they’re buying the Apple 4s, the answer is compressed down to one word: Siri. Siri on iPhone 4S lets you use your voice to send messages, schedule meetings, place phone calls, and more.

Ask Siri to do things just by talking the way you talk. Siri understands what you say, knows what you mean, and even talks back. So ask someone why they’re buying a 4s and they know the star; they know the uniqueness factor that’s causing them to upgrade.

The Concept of the Star and the Supporting Cast When Creating Uniqueness

Can you spot the flaw? Of course you can. The client knows the uniqueness, but Apple is trying to stuff it all in one graphic. And worse, the real star is being booted to the bottom of the page

But waitasec…there are all those other features

There’s the  8-megapixel resolution and a custom lens with a larger f/2.4 aperture. There’s the Dual-core A5 chip. Let’s not forget Video recording in 1080p HD. And other such features. And yes, blah, blah, blah dee blah. They’re all playing their roles. But it’s a supporting cast, not the lead role.

Siri takes the lead role. Siri is the reason that the 4s stands out like it does. And so it will be with every single iPhone that ever comes out from Apple. There will be a star that will drive home the uniqueness. And there will be the supporting cast.

And the twain shall meet

But the star should get the most lines. The most drama.  The most ad time. Nothing should eclipse the uniqueness of the product. Because once the client knows why they want to buy a product, they’re no longer comparing phones. They’re now comparing iPhones. They’re actually rejecting the iPhone 4, even though it’s half the price or even less. And they’re choosing the iPhone 4s for that one reason only.

What’s your one reason?

Every product or service has several great features and benefits. And you’ve always been afraid to choose your uniqueness, because it would mean that you’d have to slaughter and sacrifice the rest. Technically yes, the slaughter and sacrifice is needed, but only while you’re making sure the uniqueness gets the star role.

Once that role has been established, you can bring back the rest of the features and benefits to play their role as supporting crew. And that makes a good movie. And a good sales page. And they’ll all live happily ever after.

The End. The Concept of the Star and the Supporting Cast When Creating Uniqueness

P.S. Did you find this article interesting? Write your comments here. I would love to hear from you.

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  1. says

    Too true!

    Our bsd shouted so loud that we manged to avoid a pile-up on the A1 to Amsterdam 10 days ago.

    Unfortunately, no such luck with regard to a simple analytical oversight with regard to our Google advertising. I reckon we’ve lost 10 000 euros in profit compared to 2011.
    If I remember correctly, my colleague warned me not to do what I did!
    Hell’s effing bells, to put it mildly!

  2. says

    Excellent focus! Keep your hands on the wheel and your eyes on the road -then you can really rock ‘n roll – all night.
    So, I’m in the process of revising our sales letters to place our uniqueness effectively. The same applies to our autoresponders.

    Sensitive stuff allright

    • says

      And the backseat driver helps. There has been more than one occasion, where I took my eyes off the road. And having the backseat driver (screaming) saved us a lot of trouble (and money).

  3. Lynden says

    Yes you’ve blitzed it again Sean – love your work – and love this piece – it makes such sense & you used a fantastic example to bring your story to life.

  4. says

    Great Post Sean. It’s amazing how they get it when it’s on tv. You know how they have celebrities talking to siri, but when it comes to most of the internet ads and print ads i’ve seen…they dropped the ball.

  5. Wyn says

    Woo-hoo! Once again, Sean, you have hit the proverbial metaphor outta the ballpark. (Talk about mixin’ ’em! Yikes!) But yes, that metaphor hits that nail on the head and sings all the way to the bank. (I can’t resist … help! … someone stop me!)

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