VARs: Build Your Value Proposition


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Laserfiche Empower 2014 Presentation

What makes your ideal customer choose you, rather than a competitor? Your value proposition! Learn how to discover and define your value proposition, and convey your brand promise concisely to current and potential customers.

For more on value proposition, I highly recommend Marketing Sherpa's Value Proposition courses:

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  • Because I always start off with a meme … I’ll let you in on a little secret…crafting effective value propositions is really, really hard. For all I’ve researched and taught about value props, I still struggle with them myself. It’s because the value proposition forces you to think about every claim you make.
  • Before diving any deeper, we should get clear on what I actually mean by the term Value Proposition. Value Propositions are the answer you have to one simple question: Why should your ideal prospect buy from you rather than any of your competitors? So, your Value Proposition is not a catchy slogan or a detailed business plan, but rather a concise, clear, and credible answer to this question. It seems simple, yet the answers to this question are often confusing, unappealing, braggadocios, vague, and sound just like the claims everyone else is making. So, how would you answer this question about your offer? Can you state it clearly in about ten words or less? Take a minute and give it some thought…
  • To communicate value, you need everyone who works on your marketing campaigns to have a clear understanding of your value proposition – not just for your company as a whole, but for every action you desire a customer to take.IF I: fundamentally answering a first-person question in the mind of your customer (customer logic, not company logic)YOUR IDEAL PROSPECT: focus on specific segments, must accept trade-offs – you cannot be the best solution for everyoneWHY SHOULD I: what do you want me to do? Why should I do it? Must move to yesRATHER THAN COMPETITORS: “only” factor – must differentiate you from your competitors in at least one way
  • Your value proposition is the answer to this fundamental question:Why should your ideal prospect buy from you rather than any of your competitors?This is not a slogan or a headline or anything that will likely appear, as specifically worded, in any of your advertising creative. It’s also not your mission statement or business plan.What is a value proposition, then?You must differentiate your offer from your competitors’ offers.You may match a competitor on every dimension of value except one.You need to excel in at least one element of value.In this way you become the best choice for your optimum customer.There is a difference between the value proposition for your company and your product. You must address both.
  • Your company needs a primary value proposition, which is the answer to the question: “Why should your ideal prospect buy from you rather than any of your competitors?”But many marketers stop there. However, every action you ask every type of customer to take requires a value proposition. Whether you’ve taken the time to state it explicitly or not, your potential customers subconsciously (and sometimes consciously) ask themselves the value (for them specifically) of taking any action you ask them to take.Framed with customer, not company, logicDemands an obvious connection between the customers, the company and its various productsLooking for an action you’re asking someone to take – you’re giving them the best reason to take it. Company with the best reason wins!
  • The best way to use this visual is from the inside out. As I said, start with the primary value proposition (which depending on your role within the organization, you may or may not have a hand in crafting), and then break out which key prospects you are targeting with your marketing.For each prospect, you should answer this question: “Why should [PROSPECT A] buy from you rather than any of your competitors?”
  • Now that you’ve identified your prospects, which products are you trying to sell them? Each product requires its own value proposition, which you can craft by answering this question: “Why should [PROSPECT A] buy this product rather than any other product?”If a prospect is looking for a product, this is typically a product or service that either they have not bought before. In this case, the value proposition must first sell them on why they should buy this type of product or service. Once they are convinced that they need this type of product or service, they must then be sold on why to buy it from you.When you’re selling a prospect on a product, you typically highlight benefits of owning the product, namely what’s in it for them to buy your product or service. If they already buy something similar and you’re trying to get them to upgrade to your product or service, focus on additional benefits they’ll receive from your product.Remember that when selling a product (as opposed to a brand), you’re not just in competition with your competitors. You’re also in competition with them doing nothing at all.
  • If most of your prospects are currently buying something similar to your product or service, you’re selling the brand, since they’re probably already convinced that they need this type of product or service (or they wouldn’t be buying it now). Mostly, they just need to know why to buy it from you.When selling a brand, you want to focus on competitive differences between your product or service and competing options. Focus on benefits, providing examples of how their lives will be better with your product than without it. You may want to identify pain points they now suffer with that your product or service will alleviate. Include both logical and emotional reasons to act now.When selling a brand, as with selling a product, you also often have to compete with the option to do nothing. For example, if I already use an ECM system from another vendor, it may be a lot of work to move to a new one. As a result, it may take far more to get me to switch providers than it took to get me initially to buy the system I have. Here, time-based incentives may work well, creating a “ticking clock” scenario that prods a prospect to act now. You may want to offer incentives for a prospect to switch from a key competitor, such as waiving start-up fees or sweetening the pot with a discount on software or services.
  • As I said above, every action you ask a prospect to take requires a value proposition.Now that you’ve identified a value proposition for each product you’re trying to sell each prospect that aligns with your company’s primary value proposition, you have to craft a value proposition for each conversion step associated with a specific product.Here is an example question to ask yourself to help identify this process-level value proposition: “Why should [PROSPECT A] click this PPC ad rather than any other PPC ad?”You need to answer the same question for an email capture page ofa webinar registration.Because even though many of the events you produce (for example, Webinars) have no monetary cost, we know that each attendeeis paying us with an hour of their time, an extremely precious commodity. Or as Peter Drucker said, “Within limits we can substitute one resource for another, copper for aluminum, for instance. But time is totally irreplaceable.”Are you showing your hidden value? And do you do it in an organic way to let your visitors come to their own conclusions, or are you trying to cram a brand promise down their throat?
  • Appeal – How much do I desire this offer?Exclusivity – Where else can I get this offer?Credibility – Can I trust your claims?Clarity – What are you actually offering?
  • Only device that could offer this (at that time)Appealing – people wanted itClear, appealing, unique and exclusive to the iPod.
  • Steve Jobs isn’t a genius, he just beat his head into a wall finding the value prop of his companies.Which means … a great value prop isn’t determined but discovered.Two most important words in marketing: SO WHAT?Three most important words in marketing: SO F-ING WHAT?
  • Let’s take a minute and write our own value propositions. Focus on your own business and what makes you different. Highlight the enormity of the problem you are tackling.Tell the audience up front what your company sells.Distill the differentiation down to one, easy-to-comprehend sentence.Establish credibility by sharing the pedigree of the entrepreneurs, customers, or the investors.Example of a Good Value PropOne person dies of melanoma every 62 minutes. We offer a dermatoscope app for the iPhone that enables people to easily diagnose their skin, using patented pattern recognition technology trusted by the World Health Organization.
  • Appeal – How much do I desire this offer?Exclusivity – Where else can I get this offer?Credibility – Can I trust your claims?Clarity – What are you actually offering?
  • What’s best for the customer? Sounds simple. And odds are that someone, somewhere in your company is thinking about this, right? Sales. Customer Service. Definitely Product Development. Must be. But that’s not good enough. YOU are the one convincing the customer to part with his/her hard-earned money to buy your company’s product with your debonair language. So YOU must be the advocate for the customerWhat influence do I have? Likely greater than you think. After all, your campaigns are the public face of the company. Marketers have turned a pair of glowing arches into “Over 99 Billion Served.” So don’t think you can’t convince Product Development to fix that bug in the next release.Would Mom be proud? Could be your mom…could be anyone’s mom. My point is, if every internal challenge you know about were plastered on the front page of a newspaper tomorrow a la “Thank You for Smoking,” how would you feel about it? Have I stormed the barricades? You can’t win every, or probably even most, of these battles. But that shouldn’t stop you from trying to put in every effort you possibly can. Don’t settle for “It’s not my fault” because that prospective customer doesn’t care whose fault it is, only that they’ve lost trust in your brand’s true value.
  • VARs: Build Your Value Proposition

    1. 1. VAR 103: Build Your Value Proposition Melissa Henley Director of Marketing Communications, Laserfiche
    2. 2. Agenda ‣ What is a value proposition? ‣ Live optimization! ‣ Write your own value proposition
    3. 3. What is a value proposition? ‣ If I am your ideal customer, why should I buy from you rather than your competitors?
    4. 4. Why are value propositions important? ‣ Marketing is essentially communicating value to the customer in the most effective way possible so they will want to take an action.
    5. 5. A value proposition is not … ‣ ‣ ‣ ‣ ‣ A mission statement A business model A slogan “Agency speak” A key benefit
    6. 6. Derivative value propositions ‣ Primary • “If I am your ideal prospect, why should I buy from you rather than any of your competitors?”
    7. 7. Derivative value propositions ‣ Prospect • “Why should this particular prospect buy from you rather than any of your competitors?”
    8. 8. Derivative value propositions ‣ Product • “Why should this particular prospect buy this product rather than any other product?”
    9. 9. Derivative value propositions ‣ Brand • “Why should this particular prospect buy this brand of product rather than another brand of this product?”
    10. 10. Derivative value propositions ‣ Process • “Why should this particular prospect attend this workshop rather than any other workshop?”
    11. 11. Measuring the force of your value prop ‣ ‣ ‣ ‣ Appeal Exclusivity Credibility Clarity
    12. 12. Here’s a great value prop.
    13. 13. (So great, they used it again.)
    14. 14. (And again!)
    15. 15. The result?
    16. 16. Steve Jobs: value prop ninja
    17. 17. Let’s try it! •What’s the problem? •How do you solve it? •What’s your differentiator? •What’s your credibility?
    18. 18. How strong is your value proposition? ‣ ‣ ‣ ‣ Appeal Exclusivity Credibility Clarity
    19. 19. How can I make sure I have true value? ‣ What’s best for the customers? ‣ What influence do I have? ‣ Would Mom be proud? ‣ Have I stormed the barricades?
    20. 20. Crafting an effective value prop ‣ Identify the question you’re answering ‣ Identify 5-10 potential claims ‣ Rate the appeal & exclusivity of each claim ‣ Identify 2-3 evidentials for top claim(s) of value ‣ Integrate top claim(s) with supporting evidentials
    21. 21. Takeaways ‣ If you had just 10 words to tell people why they should buy from your company instead of another, what would you communicate? ‣ Express that in your marketing. ‣ Continually refine your value proposition.
    22. 22. Questions? Melissa Henley (562) 988-1688 x230