A guide to value propositions

Find out what value propositions are and how you can write yours.

24th February 2021
A guide to value propositions

Are you struggling to explain to your customers why they need your products or services? If the answer is ‘yes’, you probably need to figure out your value proposition.

I have prepared a guide to value propositions and how to write your own. Read on to find out more.

What are value propositions?

A value proposition is the value that you will provide to your customers. More specifically, your value propositions are the reasons why your customers would choose to buy from your business rather than your competitors.

Value proposition examples

Let’s look at a few examples of value propositions to help clarify what they are. Note that all of these businesses have multiple value propositions.

  • Amazon’s value proposition – Low price, wide selection with added convenience anytime, anywhere
  • Nike’s value proposition – Accessibility, innovation, customization, and brand/status
  • Netflix’s value proposition – An extensive content library, ad-free, on-demand, and straightforward pricing
  • Google’s value proposition – A free to use search engine, simple advertising for businesses, and an additional income stream for publishers
  • Tesco’s value proposition – No one tries harder for customers: Understand customers, be first to meet their needs, and act responsibly for our communities
  • Starbuck’s value proposition – Quality coffee, a sanctuary away from home and work, and excellent customer service
  • Ikea’s value proposition – Offer a wide range of well-designed, functional home furnishing products at prices so low that as many people as possible will be able to afford them

How to write value propositions

Let’s take a look at how to write your value proposition statement.

First, write down the problems that your customers face. What are the issues that they need to resolve?

Once you know the problems most affecting your customers, you need to list your products and services. What are the benefits that your offering delivers to your customers?

You then need to match up the benefits of your products and services to your customers’ problems. How does your business address and resolve the issues faced by your customers?

Finally, you need to identify what differentiates you from your competitors? What makes your products and services better for your customers than similar offerings?

You then need to think about how you articulate your value proposition. Make your value proposition clear. Keep it short and direct. You also need to make your value proposition compelling; you want your customers to take some action after reading it.

The Value Proposition Canvas – a value proposition template

There is a handy template called the Value Proposition Canvas. You can use this to plan out your value proposition. We have created a template you can use below.

Value Proposition Canvas

Here is how to use the Value Proposition Canvas:

  1. List the tasks your customers need to complete in the ‘Jobs to be done’ section
  2. Write down all of the positive changes your customers would expect once their tasks are complete – this goes into the ‘Gains’ section
  3. List all of the difficulties and pain points that your customers experience when trying to complete these tasks – this goes into the ‘Pains’ section
  4. Note down all of the products and services that you offer in the ‘Products and services’ section
  5. Next, write down the main ways in which your offering provides a new benefit to your customers – write this in the ‘Gain creators’ section
  6. List how your offering resolves a frustration or issue for your customers – write this in the ‘Pain relievers’ section
  7. You then want to align your ‘Gain creators’ with your customer’s ‘Gains’, and your ‘Pain relievers’ with your customers’ ‘Pains’
  8. Identify any gaps where your offering is not addressing the needs of your customers

Once you have all of this information, you can then write out your value proposition, clearly stating how your offering benefits your customers. You can also use any gaps identified to figure out how to improve your products and services to address your customers’ needs better.

Using value propositions in your marketing

You might now be wondering how to use your value proposition.

In my opinion, your value proposition should be front and centre on your website. It should be one of the first pieces of content that your visitors see on your site. People have much shorter attention spans nowadays, and you need to engage them quickly after they land on your webpages.

Also, think about how you can use your value proposition throughout your marketing communications. For example, if you are running ads, make sure the advertisement clearly states how your offering relieves your customers’ pains or provides them with gains. Your value proposition needs to be the common message that threads through all of your comms.

Wrapping up

You should now have the tools to go and write your value proposition statement. If you have any questions, do let us know in the comments below.

If you would like to find out more about our digital marketing services, you can contact our team by emailing hello@strategyst.co.uk.

The Author: Daniel Lee

I am a digital marketing strategist with more than eleven years' experience. I have worked in digital marketing agencies, as well as client-side. My clients include small businesses all the way up to organisations with revenue in the billions. I provide marketing consultancy both in the UK and the US. I hold a Master of Science degree in International Marketing, and I am a member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing.

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