Communicating Value

Michael Gallagher, .

Business isn’t run quite the same way as relationships; it would be interesting, though, if we had to create a value proposition in order to ask someone for a date.  We would have to provide a concise summary of why that person would possibly want to go out with us, why we are the best choice, and what we can offer that other people cannot.  We might throw in some numbers on the percentage of fun we anticipate or probability of a second date.  On second thought, maybe running a business is a lot like a relationship.

We do this all the time; filtering what people say versus what they offer, weighing pros and cons, and making decisions based on not only our feelings but the “value proposition” of the other party.  In the corporate world, this is formalized into a statement.  Some businesses are effective at communicating their value – they land the date – while others end up going to the movies alone.  It doesn’t necessarily mean that the latter company has a bad/faulty product or service; it may just mean that they haven’t communicated its worth properly.

Usually when this happens, one or more of the following issues lies at the core:

  • Credibility.  The clients do not believe that you have the expertise, knowledge, or authority to back up your claims.  They do not see how your ideas are better than the competition or they do not expect you to be able to deliver on them.
  • Differentiation.  How are you different?  What makes you a better alternative for this product or service?  If they can’t see how you are better, more effective, more efficient, etc., then your value proposition has not done its job.
  • Clarity.  Clients don’t really know what you’re selling; they’re not clear on your idea or how it is a feasible addition to their business process. Sometimes, they’re not clear because you are not clear.

Don’t panic; there are ways to ensure you will be able to surmount these communication traps and convey a clear and impressive value proposition.  We’ll tackle that in our next post.  If you are confident in your product or service, and your business’s ability to deliver as promised, then you can create a winning value proposition. It’s all about communication.

Implementing some of the ideas mentioned here can be challenging. If you would like to discuss them in the context of your own specific business please contact us. We’d be glad to help.

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Michael Gallagher

Mike Gallagher, President of Michael Gallagher Advisory, has spent the past 20 years helping small business owners and managers develop and implement strategic business plans, achieve sustainable, targeted growth and solve the problems that keep them up at night.