Business Management

Your Business Needs a Better Value Proposition — How to Improve & Share It



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Does your company have an effective value proposition? It can, and soon.

Forget the high-priced consultants, ditch the tedious focus groups, and dig deep to get at what sets your company apart from the competition. Then, use these four strategies to hone and amplify your value proposition.

Show, Don’t Tell

Ride-hailing app Uber has a crystal-clear value proposition: it gets you where you need to go, when you want to get there, without all the hassles associated with calling a taxi.

“Everything about [Uber’s experience] directly contrasts the typical experience of getting a taxi – no phone calls to disinterested dispatchers, no painful conversations trying to explain to a stressed-out cabbie about where you need to be, and no fumbling for change or worrying you’ve got enough bills in your wallet,” writes WordStream marketing expert Dan Shewan.

Uber doesn’t hit customers over the head with its seamlessness, though. The proof is in the pudding. Keep this in mind as you design your interface and shore up your UX with an eye to reducing barriers to adoption (the old pain/gain ratio).

Use Common Business Directories to Amplify Your Message

Without proper amplification, your business’s value proposition is bound to get lost in the shuffle. One effective way to spread the word is to set up and maintain profiles or accounts on popular business directories like Yelp and About.me.

Your directory listings don’t have to be fancy. In a few spare lines of copy, entrepreneur Steve Dorfman’s Simple Health Plans’ About.me page succinctly elucidates the company’s value proposition. The money quote: “Simple Health is all about making health insurance quick, easy, and painless to acquire.”

Any clearer and you’d have to worry about birds flying into it.

Be Something That’s Hard to Live Without

Admittedly, this isn’t easy for some. Companies that offer disruptive, obviously compelling solutions will undoubtedly find it easier to sell themselves as indispensable.

Slack, the ubiquitous workplace collaboration software, is a case in point. Marginal gripes aside, it’s tough to find folks willing to speak ill of Slack.

“The world seems to be divided into two types of people; those who love Slack, and those who haven’t tried it yet,” writes Shewan.

And that’s because Slack dramatically improves on email, the longstanding communication method of choice for harried professionals. It’s a slam dunk.

Does that shut the door on “dispensable” products and services? Hardly. All it means is that the keepers of those products and services must put in more work to convince core buyer groups that their solutions are relevant in circumstances they’re likely to encounter on a daily basis.

Lean on Your Social Media Ecosystem (But Don’t Be a Broken Record)

Crafting a fantastic value proposition is one thing. Getting its message out to the masses (read: your core buyer groups) is quite another matter. Don’t rely entirely on your company domain, nor directories like About.me (though both are helpful). Use your social media ecosystem, particularly LinkedIn and Twitter, to amplify your value prop’s message. Just don’t be a broken record — you want to experiment with different formulations and use cases, not blare the same tired copy over and over again.

What’s Your Company’s Value Proposition?

Just as no two companies are quite the same, no two value propositions are alike. You and your marketing team are far and away the folks best-positioned to develop, evaluate, and deploy an effective value proposition — unless anyone knows your solutions better than you, which shouldn’t be the case. Take the time to get it right.