What good are you?
That’s a fair question for any business if it’s coming from a consumer. Tied to that question is: What makes you different or better than any other company that does what you do or offers the products and/or services that you do? That is a rather common query from today’s consumer.
Consumers have a lot of choices when it comes to virtually any product or service on the market. They can shop online, weigh the variables, and make their decisions based on whatever information they can find, good or bad.
This is why your value proposition is essential.
Some marketing gurus call it your unique selling proposition (USP), and that’s close, but it really boils down to knowing your specific target audience (market segment) and the value your product and/or service provides to that specific target market. That’s a value proposition.
Let’s look at this from the perspective of a company that manufactures ceramic coffee cups. The range of consumers for their product could include companies that retail sets of dishes to consumers, companies that produce promotional gift items for businesses, tourism and hospitality-related businesses, and the general consumer.
Is the same value proposition valid for each of these market segments? Hardly.
When we dig deeper, we discover that the value provided by our ceramic coffee cup manufacturer to the promotional market may be an average quality cup at an economical price point. Add a short turn-around on delivery to the promotional company or the ability to print or etch the consumer’s message on the cups and turn them around quickly, and the value to the promotional company rises considerably. Add a variety of colors or different sizes and shapes and the value goes up even more.
The concept of a value proposition goes to the heart of your business. What consumer markets do you, or do you want to, serve? It is vital to know your consumer segments because the value they expect is what your company must deliver in order to meet or exceed their demands.
Weigh what you offer in terms of value, not benefits. That means you have to look at what you offer from the consumer’s point of view. You think of what you offer as a benefit to the consumer, where they need to see it as having value for them. Define the value clearly; again, from the consumer’s viewpoint. Determine how best to deliver that value message to the marketplace to earn your share of the business that’s out there.
If you need help figuring this all out, Brand Irons is here to do that, and the initial consultation is offered free of charge.