How to realise your brand’s value and how to share it

The competition among businesses is tougher than ever before with the advancement of e-commerce giving SME’s reach to a global market. Consumers are now bombarded with a myriad of options for products and services. Thanks to the Internet, all consumers need to do is ‘Google’ and they will have access to a broad range of brands and products. Through a simple search, consumers will be directed to the website of a particular brand or have access to several other options and review sites.

With the Internet providing access to a wider and wider range of products and services, how can one stand out from the rest? One way is through presenting consumers with a powerful value proposition.

What is a value proposition? Simply said, it is a succinct statement that summarises what a brand offers its customers and why consumers should choose the brand over another. A great value proposition is able to communicate to customers its competitive advantage using very minimal words or phrases. To give you an idea, here are some of the examples of brands with a compelling value proposition.

Survey Monkey: “Create Surveys, Get Answers.”
Canva: “Beautiful design in 30 seconds.”
CoSchedule: “The Best Way To Plan Your Marketing, Save A Ton of Time.”
Evernote: “Remember Everything”
Skype: “Skype keeps the world talking for free. Share, message and call-now with group video on mobile and tablet too.
Bitly: “Shorten. Share. Measure.”
Google Drive: “A safe place for all your files.”
PayPanther: “ Helping businesses manager their files/ emails/invoices/expenses/accounting/ life/events/clients.”
Hootsuite: “The best social media tool for business. Manage all your social media marketing from one tool.”
Netflix: “See what’s next. Watch anywhere. Cancel anytime.”

Now, how does a brand come up with a value proposition that will encourage customers to avail of the products and/or services it offers? In developing a value proposition, there are several factors to consider such as the target market, the competitors and the value that the product brings to customers.

Target Market- One of the first steps in understanding a target market is to assess the market in terms of the demographics and psychographics (i.e. who the target market/s comprise and why they buy). The demographics include information such as the age, gender, location occupation (etc) of the target market. On the other hand, the psychographics looks into the values, opinions, habits and attitudes of the target market and the motivators and demotivators for purchasing a product or availing of a service.

Competitor Information- What are the substitutes or products and services that can be used in lieu of yours? Having a clear understanding of the competition and what they offer can help a brand assess what it is up against. In doing so, it would be good to study the similarities and differences of what competitors offer from the brand and what would be necessary in order to differentiate from it.

Product Value and Features- Equally essential is to identify the value that the product will bring to customers or how it will benefit them or solve a problem. This usually is drawn from having a clear understanding of 1) the product and 2) the target market/s, their desires and what would entice them to choose a product over another. The process involves assessing the product or service by laying out all its features and then ensuring that the product or service features and delivery meets the needs and expectations of the customer. For example, for customers who are conscious about cost, this could be the price at which a product is sold. This could also be the quality of the product regardless of price for those that give more weight to quality. In terms of product delivery, the customer’s communication and service delivery preference should be considered as well.

Nowadays, competition among businesses is tougher than ever before. Customers are presented with countless options to choose from for their needs and wants. Having a well written and thought out value proposition can help entice customers to choose a product over another. The process of arriving at a great value proposition involves gaining a clear understanding of the competition, the customer and identifying what they perceive as valuable then composing a message that clearly communicates how the product or service can address their needs.

A great tool to use when developing a company’s value proposition is the Value Proposition Canvas which can be downloaded from Strategyzer’s website. However, if you are unsure and would like guidance on the process, Reload Consulting have services that cover this topic among others.