Creating Value Propositions That Sell

In a SpongeBob SquarePants episode, Mr. Krabs sees a group of tourists outside his restaurant, the Krusty Krab. With dollar signs in his eyes, he hurries out to entice them inside. As they scurry past, he shouts:

“Don’t you want to give me your money?”

Needless to say, they continue on without giving him so much as a moment’s notice.

Whether it’s busy tourists or busy decision makers, no one cares about what you want or what you’re selling. That’s where a strong value proposition comes to the rescue. Jill Konrath, author of Selling to Big Companies, defines a value proposition as:

…a clear statement about the tangible business results customers get from using your product, service or solution.

She goes on to say that a strong value proposition “always includes movement,” and describes that as:

increase cut improve save free up revitalize
accelerate reduce enhance squeeze eliminate shrink
strengthen improve grow balance minimize maximize

So what types of things can you increase, enhance, shrink, improve or revitalize? That depends on what you’re selling, and to whom. Since my company sells advertising, we can increase, improve, strengthen and grow things like:

  • revenue, profit, sales
  • prospects, leads, customers
  • customer base, market share
  • return on advertising investment

So a “winning value proposition” for us could be:

We help businesses acquire new customers and increase their market share, without wasting money on advertising that doesn’t work.

Once you’ve created a strong value proposition, use it in your phone calls, emails and voice mails, in your print and web copy, and at your networking meetings. Go ahead, you give it a try.

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