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What’s in it for them?

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Awhile back, I was having lunch with the president of a half-billion dollar corporation. She told me that if someone were to contact her with an offer to reduce waste by just 1 percent, she would clear her schedule to meet with him immediately. Why? Because she knew exactly how much her company lost to waste (and it was a lot). Every penny she would save would go right toward her bottom line.

Powerful value propositions open doors — quickly! Taking time to really clarify yours is well worth it. Here are three ways to create marketing messages that work in today’s business economy:

1. Fill your marketing messages with business-oriented terminology. A strong value proposition is always stated in business terms. Corporate buyers are particularly attracted by phrases such as:

  • Increased revenues
  • Decreased costs
  • Faster time to market
  • Improved operational efficiency
  • Increased market share
  • Decreased employee turnover
  • Improved customer retention levels
  • Increased competitive differentiation

Think about translating what you do into the language of your decision-makers. Remember, they don’t care about your product’s speed or efficiency. They don’t care about the wonderful methodologies you use. They care only about the results you deliver.

2. Make your predicted results tangible and measurable. The very best value propositions deliver tangible, measurable results that are highly desirable to prospective buyers. Yet, many companies fail to translate their “benefits” into actual numbers. If it’s possible for you to do this, I highly recommended it.

3. Specificity sells. The more specific your value proposition, the more attractive it is. Stories are another way to provide specificity, enabling you to get your message across but without having to make unsubstantiated, across-the-board claims.

Like it or not, this is the new and emerging reality of value propositions. In a world in which service offerings can be copied overnight, the only real difference among companies is the people who work for them. Become that difference by beginning with a strong, compelling value proposition.

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Jill Konrath is the author of SNAP Selling and Selling to Big Companies. If you’re struggling to set up meetings, click here to get a free Prospecting Tool Kit.


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