Are you a vitamin or a painkiller? (Your answer determines your success)

One of the best metaphors I’ve heard in business is: is your product a vitamin or a painkiller?

A vitamin is a “nice to have”. It prevents things from getting out of hand & keeps you in a positive place as long as you use it consistently. Nothing terrible is gonna happen if you don’t have it, but still it’s nice to have.

A painkiller is a “need to have”. If you have a splitting headache, you need a painkiller right away. It’s clear how a painkiller drives ROI because you’re solving a problem. The more “painful” the problem, the easier the sale.

So how do you take your product from “nice to have” to “need to have”?


Your customer 100% has a paint point that you/your product is solving, you just gotta get SUPER clear about what it is. How to hone in on their pain point:

  • What did they type into Google to find your website? Starting with your customer’s initial question is an awesome place to start

  • What do your competitor’s customers complain about? Literally read their reviews!

  • Why has your customer hesitated before buying a product like yours before?

  • What’s her biggest fear? Don’t be afraid to get deep & dark here. If she doesn’t change X about her life, what is she terrified will happen?

SSS Pretty in Pink 13.jpgLet’s run through an example…

Let’s say you’re a high ticket wedding photographer. Beautiful professional photos are “nice to have”…but how can we tap into our ideal customer’s pain point(s) and turn it into a NEED to have?

  • Your ideal customer probably typed in “Top [your city] wedding photographers”. She’s looking for a pro in her city.

  • I just did a quick google search on negative wedding photographer reviews and found the following, “I felt super awkward with her poses”, “I was surprised by the add-ons- I wasn’t expecting the extra charge”, “Our photos came out nothing like the Pinterest board we showed her”, “everything looks so dark”, “she forgot to get key shots of my side of the family together”…those are ALL pain points!!

  • Why has this bride hesitated booking? She wants to find the perfect photographer within her budget- maybe she wants a personal recommendation…lots of potential answers here, and ALL of them pain points!

  • Her biggest fear might be that she will hate the way she looks in her pictures and will never get a “do-over” because your wedding only happens once. She’s scared of not having a keepsake she loves and wants to pass on. She’s worried what people will think when she posts them online…again…ALL PAINT POINTS!!!!

All of that homework leads to you more fully understanding that you’re not selling “pretty wedding pictures”.

You’re selling the fact that you only get ONE SHOT at capturing the perfect wedding photos & you’re delivering security that this Bride & her family will have a beautiful, cherished keepsake they love forever.

Beautiful wedding pics?—> Vitamin. I’ll pay for it, but I’ll shop around a lot before I say ‘maybe’ or ‘yes’.


ONE shot at capturing a literal once-in-a-lifetime event & a guarantee I’ll love how I look? —> Painkiller! Take all my moneies.

Take a look at your website & offers and be honest, which are you selling right now: Vitamins or Painkillers? How can you turn “nice to have” vitamin products into “need to have” painkillers?

Last but not least: make sure there’s a clearly stated ACTION for your reader to take at the end!

Make sure your customer knows to book a consultation, schedule a phone call, download a freebie, hit a ‘buy now’ button- whatever the action is you want them to take by the time they’re done reading, make sure it’s 100% clear and easy. Like this:

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