A value proposition is a clear, specific promise of benefit to be given, communicated, and agreed upon. In business, the customer’s guiding belief is how specific value will be received, experienced, and derived. The idea of value has a deep and profound impact on people’s thoughts, feelings, behaviours and actions.

Often companies are charged with developing or updating “proposals” — to be used in negotiations or sales. But what is a “value proposition” and how do you know if it is genuinely unique and delivering great value? Often customers will share their experiences with others in a discussion of value propositions. If you have not yet developed your own, it’s time to start. Your company’s value proposition should provide a clear path for all parties involved in a sales or negotiation relationship. It should be based on your company’s core values and beliefs and aligned with your company’s mission and marketing.

So what makes a great value proposition? A great value proposition must be specific, measurable, readily comparable, context-specific, and future-proofed. It requires an analysis of the current marketplace to determine what consumers in various locations and segments currently value your product. It also requires an understanding of what your competitors are doing to address critical competitive challenges, including feature and geographic overlap.

Your value proposition must also address customer needs and expectations. Identify what customers want and need and consider how your company can offer these things. Customers may not value your product if they don’t need it. In other words, don’t sell your customers more of the same — they won’t buy it. Instead, focus on offering them the things that they are demanding.

Your value proposition should also be scalable. Your company can adjust it to meet the changing needs of customers. This is particularly important if your product or service is used in a market segment that is quickly becoming saturated. For example, the healthcare industry is rapidly expanding in some regions of the country, but doctors in some rural communities may not have access to health care services. If you can build an extensive distribution network targeting this particular area, your sales will grow dramatically.

There are many ways to design and develop your value proposition. Your marketing team will help you identify which components are most appropriate for your business. You can also use campaigns and focus groups to help you understand which audience are responding best to your company’s offerings. With the right marketing efforts, you can design a value proposition that drives sales.

If you would like to understand more about developing and growing products whether they are digital or physical, as a startup or within an organization, you can obtain more information here.

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