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What Is Your Value Proposition?

Via LinkedIn : “Whether you market to consumers or businesses you gotta have one,” said Gail, our copy guru, over lunch.

“How’s that different from a position or a tagline?” said Chris.

“Usually it’s longer than either but may include elements of both. It is a promise. It tells the potential customer what expectations will be fulfilled when they buy from you. It is a clear statement, usually a paragraph in length.

It should clearly answer these questions:

  1. What product or service is your company selling?
  2. What benefit do I (or my company) get out of using it?
  3. Am I the target customer/user it is intended for?
  4. Is it for specific need, use or occasion?
  5. How is yours unique from the alternatives?

Right about there I jumped in saying, “But what is the answer to Chris’s question?”

Gail looked over her glasses at me and said, “Let me give you the way I test a value proposition. I print it out and show it to someone that might have use for it and have them read it and wait for their reaction. If they want to know more I ask why. If they don’t understand it I go back to the keyboard. If they ask the price I know I’m on the right track.

Before I go that far though I make sure that:

  • It is easily understood
  • It tells me in concrete terms what I’m going to get when I buy and use it.
  • I know how it is different from competitor offerings
  • There’s no hype, no superlatives and no insider jargon
  • It takes only a few seconds to read.

Rick who had been watching and stuffing his face with a burger asked, “So where do I use this wonderful thing?”

All of us looked at Gail. She sniffed and said, “It should be on the home page or landing page of your web site and, incidentally should be tested before put it up there. It should, in some form, be on most pages of your website not to mention in just about every form of communications you use. The trick is to vary it just enough to make it fresh and interesting in all those places.

Learn more about the “front end” of marketing. You can Profit from Jerry Fletcher’s experience. Sign up for Secrets of Small Business Marketing (Dialogue blogs like this) Newsletters and other publications.

Jerry Fletcher crafts Trust-based marketing strategies that build businesses, careers and lives of joy… on and off line.

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