Element 3 – Problem vs Solution


For your successful video campaign you need to consider traditional Problem vs. Solution approaches to delivering your message. This Problem vs Solution Yin and Yang can be overtly stated or covert.

The formula is actually best described as

  • Problem – main issue
  • Agitate – drive problem home or ‘Salt in the Wound’
  • Solution – solution to the problem

Here is an example (Overt):

Tired of that giant beer gut? You’re not alone. Millions of men just like you suffer the shame and embarrassment of obesity. Yet they do nothing and miss out on the benefits of a healthier, sexier body. Confidence has ebbed away. Fortunately there’s a free booklet that will show you how to drop the gut forever.

Here’s another example (Covert):

The Will it Blend series is pure genius on a number of levels. The unmistakeable “Problem” is weak powered blenders. The over the top solution is to show the product blending everything from an iPad to Justin Bieber! The solution is so compelling that there is no question left as to what blender is the superior. Pure Genius!

So to break this own just a bit further, consider these ideas for your business:

Problem: No Traffic to website

Solution: 5 step formula.

You built a beautiful website, told all your friends, and you get zero traffic. That beautiful website is collecting dust just like millions of others. I know, I’ve been there too. Fortunately for both of us, there’s a 5 step formula that helped me get all the traffic I needed.

Problem: Acne

Solution: Proactive

Do you sometimes avoid social events? Do you shy away from situations where your skin is in the spotlight? Have you stopped doing the things you love with the people you love? When you have acne, it can feel like a wall. That’s why Proactive changes everything. It gives you back control over your skin.

The above is from the Proactive website.

Problem: Extra skin around mid section

Solution: Tummy Tuck

“When diet and exercise are no longer enough, or when weight loss or childbearing leaves hanging, wrinkled skin, unpleasant fat deposits, and a loose or damaged muscle wall, an expertly performed Tummy Tuck can produce dramatic results.”

The above is from the Clinique Plastic Surgery Center.

Stop The Insanity Infomercial. See if you can identify the “problem” in this classic infomercial:

I hope you see these examples could help you come up with a “Problem vs Solution” in your videos. While these have been effective in long form sales letters and direct response infomercials, the principles can apply to your campaign too.

Some Alternates to the Problem  vs Solution:
Alternative to the PAS (Problem Agitate Solution) formula include:

  • 4 Ps – Promise. Paint. Proof. And Push
  • Common Enemy / Controversy

Here’s the main point of this section. Whatever strategy you use (PAS, Controversy,  4Ps) you MUST have a strategy. What’s your message, what are you offering, and what problem does it solve? Ask these three questions and you will begin to see what your best approach will be.

Continue to Part 4

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