A value proposition clearly states why your target customer should do business with you instead of your competitors and makes the benefits of your product/service clear.  This is critical to convincing others to try your product or service, but it also helps you understand what you need to build – and what you don’t want to do.  If you can’t articulate at this early stage what your value proposition is, your offering may be confusing to others.

Some key things to keep in mind as you develop your value proposition are:

  • Be clear about the value that you’re offering that nobody else has
  • Keep it short and simple. If you can’t be clear with yourself about the value you’re offering, you won’t capture your target customers’ attention either.
  • Make sure you’ve listened to the feedback you’ve gathered via conversations and/or surveys. Does your value proposition fit with what you’ve heard, or have you put blinders on?
  • Share your value proposition with your trusted advisors – that inner circle that will tell you the truth about whether what you’re doing will work.If you’re off the mark they’ll tell you.
  • Check your competition – are you delivering something they haven’t addressed, or delivering in a way that makes it better/faster/cheaper than your competitors? Grab that opportunity and highlight it for your target customers.

There are some great examples here that can provide you with inspiration for your value proposition.

While the core of your idea is likely to be great, how you position it can be as important. Working through what your customer needs to get done, the pains they face in doing it, the gains you can help address, and the value proposition that ties it all together will help you achieve the right approach.

Written by Andreas Zapletal  on behalf of  Open People Network

This article is part of a 4 part series, check out How to Gather Information About Your Customers, Identifying What Your Customer Needs to Do and Identifying your customer’s pains and gains.