Defining your value proposition


This is a question that meets you whenever you are trying to sell something. Whether it is a new insurance plan or the next big shot idea to impress your boss, everyone wants to know what they will get out of it.

Your kids want to know what they will get out of the vacation that you have planned for the weekend. Will it be a fun filled one or one of your boring office get togethers that you disguise as holiday?

Your client wants to know whether the new investment that you promise high returns on, is definitely worth all the money he is putting in. What will he get and how much will he make?

The answer to the question that you face is your value proposition.  The answer that sells your offering to your target audience.

Value proposition defines the value that your product offers to the customer.  It clearly defines the results that your customer will get using your product or service

It tells them:

  • What you can offer.
  • How it will solve their problem or increase their comfort levels.
  • Why they should buy only from you and not from the competition.

Before you pitch in to answer your questions first view the solution as the customer sees it.  As Charles Kettering, a famous inventor once said “A problem well stated is a problem half-solved”.  It is important that you understand the problem well and then offer a solution.

Second, put it in a language that is easy to understand. If your statements are abstract and not conclusive about what is it that you are offering, then you need to relook them urgently.

Talk about small wonders. Discuss the small things which add to the value of the deal that you are offering e.g. a money back guarantee, a free gift, free shipping, free exchange and so on.

Building your Value Proposition. Your value proposition should be built keeping in mind the following points

  1. Your product name: what is it, what does it do.
  2. Two or three points about how it benefits
  3. Who is your target audience
  4. Add a relevant picture or a logo which remains in the reader’s mind.

What your Value proposition should not be. Here is a list of things you should avoid when you are working on your value proposition.

  • Don’t use jargon that is inconclusive of what you do.
  • Don’t put in a video and expect people to sit through it. Most people won’t. Clearly written text is a must. A video should only be supplementary to increase interest.
  • Text format should be reader friendly. Use a comfortable font size.

To summarize, here are some points which you could use while building your value proposition:

  1. Clear statement of what you are offering- how it will help and for whom.  Quantify the benefits.
    E.g. what percentage packaging costs does the customer save by useing your new strapping tools which save material?
  2. Use visuals to reinforce
  3. Compare competition.
  4. Highlight special offers
  5. Avoid clichés, exaggerations and meaningless  jargon

Remember that people will always rely on tangible results before they reach out to try your product. In today’s fast paced world no one has time for non performance. So if you can quantify the benefits it will bring them, your customers will feel encouraged to try out your product.

Once done do not hesitate to take an honest opinion of what people think. Like any marketing product which goes through a testing phase a value proposition needs to be tested and perfected over time.