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Chapter
4

Write out 5 value propositions

Now that you have done a deeper dive into assessing your company and your customers, you can identify the areas of overlap. This is where you can hone in on how business offering uniquely lines up with what your customers needs.

*Source: Adam Alter, Professor at the Stern School of Business

The purpose of a value proposition

Your value proposition is the core of your competitive advantage. It articulates why someone would choose you over a competitor is so important in this technological age where there are a variety of options available at any moment. 

In the next section, we will sharpen how you speak about your value proposition. We will be using statement formulas so you have an efficient and precise way to talk about your business, regardless of the audience. Here are some of the many places you will be able to utilize these value props:

  • On all marketing materials (email campaigns, website, flyers, social media)

  • In your introduction during events

  • On your business cards

  • On your LinkedIn bio

  • Building organic word of mouth

As you can see, crafting a sharp value proposition is very important and there is a wide range of uses for it.

Answer these questions in your value proposition

There are a number of ways you can craft your value proposition statement, but all must answer:‍

  1. Who is your customer

  2. What does your customer need or want

  3. How does your product or service meet that need or want

  4. Why are you better than the competition‍

To begin brainstorming your value proposition statement, answer the above questions in your related workbook exercise. 

‍Next, let’s look at a few examples of formulating your value proposition using a simple sentence structure that turns your answers into something concise, elegant, and targeted. Here’s an example from Geoff Moore’s book, Crossing the Chasm, where he suggests the following format:

For [target customer] who [needs or wants X], our [product/service] is [category of industry] that [benefits]”‍

Example 1: For eco-conscious fashionistas who want to look good without harming the planet, our clothing is the latest fashion that is made from sustainably sourced and recycled materials.

Example 2: For high-growth NYC-based tech startups who want to grow without paid marketing, our SEO content development services is the digital content that will quickly drive organic growth.

‍For another example, you can follow the approach outlined by Steve Blank in his book The Four Steps to the Epiphany:

We help [X] to [Y] by [Z]”

Example 1: We help eco-conscious fashionistas to look great and lower their environmental impact by creating sustainable clothing in the latest trends.

Example 2: We help high-growth NYC-based tech starts to grow without paid marketing by developing SEO content that drives organic growth.

As you can see, both of these formulas are effective at distilling the who, what, and why of these two businesses without becoming overly complicated or wordy.‍‍

Write out 5 options for value propositions

Using the formulas above as your template and your workbook, write out 5 options for your own value proposition statement. In case you need to see them again, here are the two templates and their examples so you can see how they differ:

Template 1: ‍

For [target customer] who [needs or wants X], our [product/service] is [category of industry] that [benefits]”

Example 1: For eco-conscious fashionistas who want to look good without harming the planet, our clothing is the latest fashion that is made from sustainably sourced and recycled materials.

Template 2: 

We help [X] to [Y] by [Z]”

Example 2: We help eco-conscious fashionistas to look great and lower their environmental impact by creating sustainable clothing in the latest trends.

Congratulations! You’ve accomplished some challenging but important work here: identifying a few possible value propositions and making them concise and targeted. Hopefully, this exercise helped you feel empowered and confident in your business and this messaging will allow you to share that confidence with your customers.

Next, you’ll put these five value propositions out in the wild to test which is the most effective.

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