We all know that when you sell to a company, you sell to people. But…
A great value proposition clearly communicates to customers a specific fact about why they should buy from you and why you are different, better, and worth purchasing from.
It’s not just line of text, but it can and should permeate all of your marketing messages as well as your customers’ experience.
Here are our 4 steps to creating your company or product value propositions.
Step 1: DISCOVER your value proposition
Conduct interviews with customer facing people – sales, product, customer services – and ask them:
- Audience: Describe your ideal prospect? What’s important to them? What are their key drivers?
- Problem: What drives their need to change? What problem does the company/product/service solve?
- Benefits: What are the benefits they need to know to embrace change?
- Point of difference: Why should they buy from you instead of a competitor? What’s makes you different? Some examples include:
- Being the best at something
- Best value
- Newness “there’s nothing else like it”
- Customisation “being able to create things on their own”
- Design and usability “how cool it looks”
- Status “luxury and aspiration”
- Superior performance
- Reducing costs for the customer
- Quantify the value: What specific benefit can they get? Steer clear of “It’ll save you money” and opt instead for “You’ll save £30/month on your bill”.
Where possible conduct interviews with your customers and prospects too.
Step 2: DEFINE the value proposition
Compare your answers with the claims of your main competitors and then present back the findings in a workshop to agree the points and select the most promising ideas to develop further.
Step 3: DEVELOP the value proposition
The best value propositions are clear and easy to understand – they say what it is, who’s it for and how it’s useful. They’re clear about how it’s different or better than the competitor’s offer.
Avoid hype (like ‘never seen before amazing miracle product’), superlatives (‘best’) and business jargon (‘value-added interactions’). Say in the exact language of your customers, in seconds, what you’re selling.
Try crafting your value proposition using a simple structure:
- Headline. What is the end-benefit you’re offering in one short sentence. Mention the product and/or the customer. Grab attention.
- Sub-headline or a 2-3 sentence paragraph. A specific explanation of what you do/offer, for whom and why is it useful.
- Bullet points. List the three key benefits or features. What makes your offering unique and different?
- Visual. Images can communicate much faster than words. Show the product, the hero shot or an image reinforcing your main message.
Test it: ask current customers what they think. It should be: “you read my mind!”
Step 4: DELIVER your value proposition
Develop supporting elements to turn a good value proposition into a great one:
- Testimonials: Your customers will always be more persuasive than you. Use photos to increase trust. Let the customer tell a story of them getting the most out of your product: stories tend to be more memorable than even facts and statistics. Use people like them: our bias is to be more interested, trusting and favourable toward people who are similar to us.
- Assurance: Be specific about what you plan to offer, to make sure customers are happy. You can also offer assurance through the form of support, community, and content. People love knowing that others will be there to help them with their purchase.
- Social proof: Outside of specific testimonials, social proof – such as notable press features – serve really well for customers who might feel hesitant about buying from a new company. You can also feature some interesting facts about your performance, or the notable brands you serve.
- Removing risk: Include things like no setup charges, no long-term contracts, free delivery or unlimited usage/licenses.
Do you have any other tips for creating great value propositions? We’d love to hear from you on LinkedIn.