The next two installments of the #gxmxp Series focus on Unique Value and Unique Selling Propositions. Once you complete these two steps you’ll be ready to create your marketing collateral. Today, we’re going to talk about Unique Value Propositions.
A Unique Value Proposition (UVP) is a clear statement of the tangible results a customer gets from using your product or service.
Don’t get too caught up in the “Unique” element of your UVP. That’s a tough standard and, at this stage, unnecessary. It’s enough that you are able to specifically and succinctly help customers understand exactly what your product or service does for them.
You already know the value you create for your customers. You either help them make money, save money, gain a competitive advantage, or mitigate risk. If you’re selling to consumers, add emotion to that list of why people buy.
In this exercise, we’re going to add more detail to that value and identify the specific, tangible results customers get from your product today. The key word to focus on here is tangible.
So, what should it look like? A UVP can be a clear demonstration of time savings, cost savings, product quality, etc. For example, say the industry standard for products similar to yours is that they’re 93% effective, but yours is 99% effective. Being 99% effective is a value proposition because it’s tangible, quantifiable and factual.
This is not your elevator pitch. Your elevator pitch is a very broad statement about who you work with and how you generally help them.
With your UVP, we’re going to actually look at every feature of your product and determine what specific value it creates for your customers.
Before going any further, download the UVP Document from our Resources/Downloads section and open it up.
To get started generating your UVPs, you’ll want to take a top-down approach starting with the ways that you create the most value and working your way down.
At first, you can create broad value propositions that encapsulate the tangible results of your product as a whole. As you move down the value chain, you can begin to focus on individual features.
There’s a lot of room for granularity here.
As you’re doing this exercise, get into as many statistics and quantifiable details as possible, and then think about every feature of your product and how each feature creates tangible value.
Here are example UVPs:
Still need inspiration? Now that you know what a UVP is you can easily identify one when you see it. Go back to your competitive analysis and see what UVPs people in your industry highlight.
However, don’t focus on how the product or service is different from industry competitors. Rather, think about exactly what it does for your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) and what they can expect to see from your product or service. We’ll focus on how to differentiate yourself later.
Likewise, as you’re creating your UVPs, don’t worry about writing something that sounds good. It’s easy to go down the rabbit hole of crafting the perfect sentence. We’ll get there eventually. For now, worry about writing something that’s easy to understand.
At the end of the day, most companies really only need about 5-10 strong value propositions. To get there, write down about 20 value propositions to start. Try to avoid letting perfect be the enemy of good by stuffing too many UVPs into one statement.
You can even write the same UVP multiple times in a variety of ways. Once you’ve exhausted all possible UVPs, review your list and refine it until you have about 8-10 strong and clear UVPs.
Your final UVPs should be short, clear and to the point. They don’t have to be ready to publish.
What you need at this stage is the essence of the UVP so that when it comes time to deploy it on a website or deck you know the point you are trying to get across.
Once you have this final list of UVPs, start testing them in conversations with customers. Testing doesn’t mean that you should build a website and fill it with all of the propositions you just wrote.
You want to speak these UVPs to people in your ICP, and track which ones resonate the loudest.
Taking your UVPs out on a test drive will inform your choice of which UVPs to use and whether or not you’re speaking clearly enough about the value your product or service provides.
Once you know which UVPs you’ll move forward with, keep them in this document and share them with your team. Let them know that when they’re talking to a potential customer, these are the points they have to hit during the conversation.
This UVP Document is your dictionary of value. Whenever you create a new piece of marketing material, don’t start from scratch. Start with the UVPs in your UVP Document and think about what pieces of information you need to get across with this new piece of collateral. The UVP Document will help remind you that these are the only things that matter to communicate.
You’ll use this information in conversations, decks, one-pagers, websites and more. These UVPs will be repeated in different formats based on the medium, but the message should always be the same.
Next up in the #gxmxp Series we’ll talk about how to create the other half of your core messaging: Unique Selling Propositions. Once you’ve developed that, you’ll have everything you need to start building out marketing collateral for any situation.