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Essentials of a Compelling Value Proposition

05th Oct 2015 –

One of the traditional mistake when building Value Proposition is to dive into the details of the solution before giving sufficient thoughts to the problem you are looking to solve. One of the classic yet common mistake is to compile detailed business plan and marketing plan documents which eventually ends up useless. Your business idea will have tough time if you give precedence to business plan over value proposition.

In the simplest and fastest way that you can, your customer must be able to see that your business is the “perfect fit” for their needs. If you can define and communicate clearly what you have, you have a business to do and a market to support.

The Four U’s Exercise

You business Value Proposition needs to prove that your idea  is the perfect solution por a problem that you are trying to solve. The very important and known four U’s are perfect to evaluate if you have a problem worth solving:

  • If the problem is Unworkable, you have an opportunity in hand, but, only if the idea proves that the inaction or consequences are fatal.
  • If fixing the problem is Unavoidable, then you have to comply to regulatory or governance control.
  • If the problem is Urgent, you have to come up with a solution ASAP because it’s impacting your organizational goals.
  • If the problem is Underserved, there are a lot of solutions available but wait, I don’t see anything dealing with my problem? Or maybe, there are thousands of people like me.

Alex Osterwalder, author of Business Model Generation and co-founder of Strategyzer, together with KISSmetrics held a webinar on how to create compelling value propositions. In this webinar, Alex tackled things such as using the Value Proposition Canvas and Business Model Canvas and how to use it on testing your value propositions. Taking in the things we learned during the webinar, Convert shares to you how to compose a compelling value proposition.

Know Your Customer

Three unique selling points can help you know your potential customers better and assist you in developing better value propositions around customers needs and help you to stand out against your competition:

  • Jobs that your customer is trying to get done.
  • Tasks that your customer is trying to perform to get the job done.
  • Problems that your customer is trying to solve.

But if you want to have the value propositions that will sell, you need to frame the idea based on what your customer is trying to get done. You can’t create value propositions if you are thinking about so many things. Focus on one main item and go from there.

Writing Unique Value Propositions

In an article published by Peep Laja, he stated that:

Value proposition is the # 1 thing that determines whether people will bother reading more about your product or hit the back button.

You can see how important this is in the determination of your spot in the market. Let’s say you are already able to frame the idea based on what your customer is trying to get done, your next challenge is to write the value proposition – converting the idea into words. How do you write the ideas that will sell?

  • Be clear and concise. Clarity is always the number one rule. To achieve this, you need to be concise. The shorter the message, the better.
  • Communicate results. Let the customer know what is expected of your product or business.
  • Let your product stand out. Ask yourself – how is your offer better than the existing product?
  • Be truthful. Avoid using catch phrase like “never before seen”, “the ultimate solution” and so on. Make your case instead.
  • Apply the “5 second rule”. Your value proposition must be written in a way that can be easily read and understood in just 5 seconds.

You cannot write or create the perfect value proposition in just one sitting. In reality, there will be several attempts made. You might have to redesign it many times – you have to make the wrong attempts first before you can make things right.

Make sure that there is a “value” in what you are offering. A value that is so irresistible and that the only option left is to buy. If you want to know more about the webinar, you can watch it full here.

Originally published October 05, 2015 - Updated September 30, 2020

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