We all know that marketing constantly changes. But one thing remains consistently prevalent when it comes to marketing: a decent set of value propositions.
Over the past 35 years, we have developed messaging for some of the world’s leading brands. When it comes to writing and creating value propositions, clients have often asked us, “what does it actually mean?”
All too often words like control, visibility, cost reduction, efficiency, and business transformation are all misconstrued into what people believe to be a value proposition. We use a value proposition to articulate the one compelling customer benefit of a product, service or solution. It’s not a slogan or advertising technique; it’s not a positioning statement; it’s not a catchphrase; it’s not: L’Oreal. Because you’re worth it!
If you have something of value within your organisation, you need to communicate it out to your customers with a considered and justified message. This isn’t about saying words like ‘take your business to the next level with global cost reductions’; it’s about channelling into the customer emotional consciousness. If you’re selling the best mobile phones in the world – what part of them being the best will impact the customer’s decision to buy one? – That’s your value proposition (be it the longest battery life, the most hi-definition screen). The point is people want to feel like connect to your proposition; they want to immediately continue the conversation they are already having with themselves when they are looking to make a purchase.
Getting it right
A good rule of thumb to decipher what a true value proposition statement includes is to following a few simple steps:
1. Speak the language – Your customers will use specific terms and phases, be sure to tell them the key information in a quick and simplified way
2. Don’t fluff up – Try not to use fluffy or overtly ‘marketing’ words. Keep the message between 10 and 17 words and never more than 20
3. Avoid the hype – Don’t get carried away with superlatives and jargon like best-fit, amazing cost saving product with value-added benefits (so dull!)
4. Describe, describe, describe – What is it, what will make someone buy this from you, what will it do?
5. The 5-second rule – If you can’t read and understand it in 5 seconds or less… it’s wrong
If you can take the time to get your proposition correct, it will stand out from the masses and it will be worth its weight in gold!
Here’s a great example of a value proposition that works – can you guess the brand?
You get fresh, hot pizza delivered to your door in 30 minutes or less – or it’s free