Write a product description blog post about something in your bag/backpack/purse/drawer. In your blog post, introduce your product and then answer the five following questions.

How would you describe the product?

For this question, provide a simple, two to three sentence description of the product. It doesn’t need to be super long or detailed and don’t worry about providing a fancy answer. Simply write down a short description as if you were describing the product to a customer.

What’s unique/special about this product?

The goal here is to identify something unique or special about the product. What does this product offer that others don’t? Is it made in the USA? Is it easy to install? Does it provide analytics that other sites don’t offer?

Eventually, you’ll use this to identify a unique selling proposition (USP). A USP is something unique that other companies don’t offer. Is there something special about your product? Is there something that makes it stand out from the competition? Record anything here about the product that makes it special or unique.

What big benefit does it provide?

Not only do you want to know how a product is unique, but you also know what benefit it provides customers. Many companies stop at describing the product and don’t go on to conveying the benefit of using it.

For example, a company may talk about how they offer web analytics software but don’t tell customers about the benefit of using the service. Instead, they should tell customers that the software helps them build a more profitable site, generate more revenue per customer, or accomplish something else along these lines. The focus should be on providing a benefit, not just describing the service.

What pain does it alleviate?

People generally buy for one of two reasons — to increase their pleasure or to minimize pain. In the question above, we identified the benefit that would “increase pleasure;” in this question, we’ll identify which pain is minimized by using the product.

For example, a car insurance company could use a headline like this: “Are You Paying Too Much for Your Car Insurance?” The ad would then go on to talk about how most customers pay more than they need for car insurance, and how company X can save them more money (which is something similar to what GEICO currently does). The purpose of the ad is first to focus on the pain, and then to talk about how Company X alleviates that pain.

Another option is to focus the ad on the pleasure customers experience from saving money. It could use a headline like this: “How Will You Spend the Money You Save Using [Specific Car Insurance Company Name Here]?” Instead of focusing on the pain, it draws attention to the pleasure experienced by switching to a different insurer (which is what GEICO did in 2008 with their “the money you could be saving” ads).

Often, focusing on the pain eliminated is more effective than focusing on the pleasure provided, but both approaches can be tested to evaluate their effectiveness.

What features are included and what are the benefits of each?

The first thing you want to do to answer this question is write down each of the product’s features. You may not end up using all of them in your copy, but at the very least, you want to record them all in one place so you have them at your fingertips if needed. Some products have a lot of features, others have less. Either way, list all of your product features here with a short description of each.

In addition to listing the features, be sure to list the benefit of each. We’ll talk more about benefits later, but in short, customers care more about benefits provided by features than the features themselves (but you still may need to list the features in your copy so be sure to record them all here).

For example, customers care more about high speed internet that helps them watch streaming videos without interruption than internet that provides 15 mbps download speeds. The “15 mbps” is a feature, in this case, and “streaming videos without interruption” is the benefit provided by the feature. Record the features of your product and the corresponding benefit now.

Example for "Create a Product Description Document":
https://twitter.com/cogdog/status/765200741497581569

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21 Responses Completed for this Challenge

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  • Stick it to the Man! (Meredith Magee, @merebmagee)

    This link includes my take on the describe a product challenge.

  • Altec Lansing, a Product Description (Wyatt Hebblethwaite)

    Hi!  Today I will be providing you with a product description of something from my backpack.  I will answer 5 questions How would you describe the product? Meet the Altec Lansing Bluetooth Speaker.   This is a sleek and durable speaker.  It has a clip for portability as well as a rubber casing that makes it …

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  • The Magic Brush (Taylor Britt)

    This post goes out to all my long haired friends that know the struggle of trying to brush through hair when it is wet. There is nothing more painful and frustrating than trying to brush through tangled and wet hair. I honestly thought I might go bald someday until this magical brush came into my life: …

    Continue reading “The Magic Brush”

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  • Wires Are Lame (Jake Henry)

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  • Create a Product Description Document (Audrey Gililland)

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  • Come Out, Come Out Wherever You Are (Mackenzie Metzger)

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  • Your World (Carter Skeen)

      It separates you and I, can’t you tell? Uplifting music, an intense podcast, a call to mom – it’s why I can’t hear you. It’s a sleek, black, envy ridden product that slips into a case like a pillow. Bose QC35 Wireless Nose Canceling headphones, the one thing that allows me to escape into… More Your World

  • Challenge82 (caffeine encounters )

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  • The Emily Ley Simplified Planner (Kylie Almon, @kylieadman)

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1 Tutorial for this Challenge

  • Live Limitless (My blog)

    Are you one of those unlucky people that is constantly breaking your phone? Whether it is a little drop of water or a quick drop to the floor, breaking your phone can be the worst feeling in the world. Now, you can say goodbye to all of those issues with a case that works wonders. … Continue reading “Live Limitless”

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