How To Write A Killer Value Proposition In 3 Steps

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TL;DR

Understanding value propositions is crucial for any business. This article will cover the essential elements of a value proposition to help you create a compelling message that resonates with your audience, including:

  • The five key components every value prop should have
  • How to craft your unique value proposition in just three steps
  • What mistakes to avoid when writing your value prop
  • The top techniques to use (including value proposition canvas)
  • How to distribute your value prop

Picture this: you have a great product idea but struggle to convey its value to potential customers. You know your product is amazing, but somehow, it doesn’t drive sales. What could be the missing piece of the puzzle? It’s most likely your value proposition.

A good value proposition explains what makes your company unique and valuable to your ideal customers. It should clearly communicate the benefits and solutions that your product offers and why it’s better than any other option out there.

But if your value proposition fails to make an impact, it’s time to step back and re-evaluate.

In this article, let’s get back to the basics of creating a unique value proposition, including your positioning statement, value proposition examples, and tips for crafting a compelling message that explains what your customer gains from buying your product.

Let’s get started.

What is a value proposition?

A value proposition is a clear statement that explains why someone should choose your company offers over others. It highlights the specific benefits you offer and addresses the customer’s needs or problems directly.

A strong value proposition answers key questions such as:

  1. What does your product or service do?
  2. How does it solve a problem or improve a situation?
  3. Why should the customer choose you over the competition?

For example, if you run a SaaS B2B business offering project management software, your value proposition might be a simple sentence like: “Our project management software streamlines team collaboration by consolidating all tasks, deadlines, and communications in one platform, helping your business increase productivity and meet project timelines with ease.”

Your own value proposition should be clear, concise, and focused on what makes your offering unique. This helps potential customers quickly understand the benefits and motivates them to choose your product or service.

The 5 key components of a value proposition

Before getting to your value proposition design (aka finding the exact words, what messages resonate more, and addressing your customer pains), you should start with the basics. These are the five key components that every good value proposition should include:

1. Identify your target audience

Know exactly who you’re trying to reach. Define your audience by their demographics, needs, and pain points. This ensures your value proposition speaks directly to the people most likely to benefit from your product or service.

Screenshot of Breadcrumbs Reveal, a tool that will help you identify your target audience when you are writing your value proposition
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Start by creating detailed buyer personas. Include specifics like age, job title, industry, and common challenges. For instance, if you’re offering competitive intelligence software, your target customers might be marketing and product managers in tech companies who need to stay ahead of industry trends and competitor moves.

Ask yourself:

  • Who would find the most value in what I offer?
  • What are their daily struggles and goals?
  • How does my product or service fit into their workflow?

The more precise you are, the better you can tailor your messaging to resonate with them. You need to understand not just who they are but also what motivates them and what barriers they face. By zeroing in on these details, you can craft a value proposition that clearly addresses their specific needs and compels them to take action.

2. Find out what problem you are solving

Pinpoint the specific problem your audience faces that your company’s products can solve. Be clear and precise. This step is crucial because it directly ties your value proposition to the needs of your ideal customer.

Start by asking:

  • What are the biggest challenges my audience encounters?
  • How does this problem impact their daily operations or bottom line?
For example, if you provide competitive intelligence software, the problem might be that marketing and product managers struggle to gather and analyze competitor data efficiently. This inefficiency can lead to missed opportunities and poor strategic decisions.

Dig deep into the pain points:

  • Do they spend too much time manually collecting data?
  • Are they missing critical insights due to scattered information sources?
  • Is their current process leading to outdated or inaccurate data?

Clearly defining the problem helps you align your solution directly with what your audience needs. Describe this problem in simple terms, and make sure it’s something your audience can immediately relate to. By doing so, you show that you understand their struggles and position your business offers as the best solution.

Identifying the problem accurately and conveying it in your value proposition reassures potential customers that you’ve designed your solution specifically for them. This makes your value proposition more compelling and relevant.

3. Consolidate your USP

Determine what sets your product or service apart from competitors. Focus on one key aspect that makes you unique. It’s essential to be specific and clear about why your solution is better than others.

Start by asking:

  • What do we offer that no one else does?
  • Why should customers choose us over our competitors?
For example, if you're offering competitive intelligence software, your USP might be the ability to provide real-time data updates and notifications, while competitors only offer weekly reports. Highlight this distinct feature and explain how it benefits the customer, such as enabling faster decision-making and keeping them ahead of industry changes.
Screenshot of Unkover
When using a competitive intelligence tool, you need instant notifications of changes in your competitors’ activities. When using Unkover, you get a Slack notification every time a competitor you’re tracking makes a move.

Identify the elements that differentiate you:

  • Superior technology
  • Exclusive features
  • Exceptional customer support
  • Better pricing models

Your USP should be something that matters to your target audience and directly addresses their needs or pain points. It’s not enough to be different; you must be different in a way that provides clear value to them.

Use straightforward language to describe your USP. Avoid business jargon or vague statements. Instead, focus on concrete, tangible benefits that make your product or service stand out. This clarity helps potential customers quickly see the unique advantages you offer and why they should choose you over the competition.

4. Turn features into benefits (and value)

Translate your product’s features into direct benefits for the customer. Don’t just list what your product does; explain how it solves their problems or makes their life easier.

Start by asking:

  • How does each feature help my audience?
  • What specific problem does this feature address?
For instance, if your competitive intelligence software includes automated data collection, don’t just say that. Explain it in terms of benefits: "Our software automatically gathers competitor data from multiple sources, saving you hours of manual work and ensuring you always have up-to-date information."

By any chance, have you seen Unkover’s homepage?

Screenshot of the Unkover Homepage
Image Source.

Focus on how each feature adds value:

  • Increased efficiency
  • Cost savings
  • Better decision-making
  • Enhanced productivity

Always frame the features from the user’s perspective. Instead of saying, “Our software has a customizable dashboard,” say, “With our customizable dashboard, you can track only the metrics that matter to you, streamlining your analysis process and making it easier to spot trends.”

When you turn features into benefits, you’re showing the customer the real-world impact of using your product. This makes your value proposition more compelling because it directly connects your offering to their needs and desired outcomes. It’s all about making the advantages clear and tangible so the customer can easily see the value in choosing your solution.

5. Add proof and validation

Support your claims with evidence to build credibility and trust. Customers are more likely to believe in your product or service if you show them proof that it works.

Start by asking:

  • What data or testimonials do I have that demonstrate my product’s effectiveness?
  • How can I validate the benefits I’ve promised?

Consider these types of proof:

  • Customer testimonials: Share quotes from satisfied customers explaining how your product solved their problems.
  • Case studies: Present detailed examples of success stories, highlighting specific results and metrics.
  • Statistics: Use numbers to back up your claims. For instance, “Our clients saw a 30% increase in competitive insights accuracy within the first month.”
  • Awards and certifications: Mention any industry accolades or certifications highlighting your credibility.
For example, if you’re offering competitive intelligence software, provide a testimonial from a marketing manager who successfully used your software to outmaneuver competitors. Or, share a case study showing how a client improved their market positioning using your real-time data updates.

Here’s how to add proof effectively:

  • Be specific. Use concrete examples and real data. Vague statements won’t instill confidence.
  • Be relevant. Choose proof points that directly relate to the benefits your audience cares about.
  • Be honest. Ensure all testimonials, statistics, and case studies are genuine and verifiable.

Adding proof and validation turns your value proposition from just words to a proven promise. It reassures potential customers that your claims are backed by real-world results, making it easier for them to trust and choose the services offered by your company.

How to craft an effective value proposition in 3 steps

Creating a compelling value proposition is crucial for capturing your audience’s attention and differentiating yourself from competitors. Follow these three steps to craft a value proposition that resonates and drives action.

1. Research and analysis

Before writing a unique value proposition, you need to gather the right information. This step ensures that your message is grounded in real insights.

a. Market research

Understand the market landscape. Identify your potential customers, what they need, and how they behave. Look at trends and demands within your industry. This helps you tailor your message to what your audience actually cares about.

To start, segment your market based on demographics, behavior, and buying patterns. Use surveys, focus groups, and data analytics to gather information. Define clear buyer personas that represent your ideal customers.

b. Competitor analysis

Analyze your competitors carefully, noting their offerings, positioning, strengths, and weaknesses. LinkedIn Sales Navigator is a powerful tool for building a targeted leads list. This helps you identify areas for differentiation and unique offerings.

Look at their websites, marketing materials, and customer reviews. Identify their value propositions and evaluate their effectiveness. Note any gaps or unmet needs in their offerings that you can address.

Use a tool like Unkover to automate your competitor analysis and stay ahead in the market. This powerful tool allows you to track and monitor your competitors’ online presence, email marketing, content marketing, and more. With Unkover, you can easily identify your top competitors and analyze their strategies to improve your own.

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c. Customer feedback

Engage directly with your existing customers to gather feedback. Find out what they value most about your product or service and what could be improved. Their insights will highlight the features and benefits that resonate most.

Conduct interviews, send out surveys, and monitor social media conversations. Pay attention to common themes and specific language your customers use to describe their experiences. This information is critical in shaping a value proposition that speaks to their needs.

Also, monitor your competitors’ reviews on G2 to see what features they highlight and how their customers respond. This can give you valuable insights into what works for your competition and help guide your content strategy. Additionally, keep an eye on industry news and trends to stay ahead. You never know when a new technology or innovation could disrupt your market, so being aware and adaptable is important.

Screenshot of the Unkover interface
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Conducting thorough research and analysis will give you a solid foundation for creating a relevant and compelling value proposition.

2. Clear messaging

Your own value statement and proposition must be straightforward and easy to understand. Focus on clarity and relevance to ensure your message is effective when you write your value proposition statement.

First, identify the core elements by answering these questions:

  • What do you offer?
  • Who is it for?
  • Why is it valuable?
Pro tip: Be specific. Instead of saying, "We provide software solutions," say, "We offer real-time competitor insights for marketing managers."

Highlight the benefits; don’t just list features. Explain how those features benefit your target customer.

Pro tip: For example, if your software updates in real-time, say, "Our real-time updates help you make faster, better-informed decisions."

Use simple, direct language. Avoid jargon and keep your language simple. Your value proposition should be easily understood at a glance.

Pro tip: For example: "We provide product managers with real-time competitor insights, helping them make faster, better decisions."

Make it relatable. Speak directly to your audience. Use language and examples they can relate to. If your target customers are small business owners, address their specific challenges and needs.

Pro tip: For example: "As a small business owner, you need up-to-date market data to stay competitive. Our software provides real-time insights, so you never miss an opportunity."

3. Test and refine it

A great value proposition isn’t static. You need to test it, gather feedback, and refine it to ensure it remains effective.

Start by testing different versions

Don’t settle on the first version you create. Develop multiple versions of your value proposition and test them with different segments of your audience. Use A/B testing to determine which version performs best.

For example, if you have two versions of your value proposition, send each one to a different group within your email list or use different ad variations. Measure which one gets more engagement or conversions.

Gather data

Look at key metrics such as engagement rates, click-through rates, and conversion rates. If one version consistently outperforms the others, analyze why.

For instance:

  • Engagement Rate: Are people interacting with your content more when one version is used?
  • Click-Through Rate (CTR): Does one version lead to more clicks on your call-to-action buttons?
  • Conversion Rate: Are more people making purchases or signing up when exposed to a particular version?

Use customer feedback

In addition to data, collect direct feedback from customers. Ask them what they think about your value proposition. This can be done through surveys, interviews, forms, or some of the best 360 feedback tools.

Sample questions include:

  • “What part of this message resonated most with you?”
  • “Was there anything unclear or unappealing?”
  • “Would this value proposition make you more likely to try our product?”

Refine based on insights

Take the insights from your data and feedback to refine your value proposition. Focus on what aspects drive the most interest and tweak elements that don’t work.

For example:

  • If feedback indicates your message is too technical, simplify your language.
  • If data shows higher conversions with a specific benefit highlighted, emphasize that benefit more prominently.

Repeat the process

Testing and refining should be ongoing. As market conditions change and your business evolves, revisit your value proposition regularly to ensure it still aligns with customer needs and expectations.

Avoid these 4 mistakes when writing your value proposition

Crafting a strong value proposition is essential for attracting and retaining customers. However, many businesses make common mistakes that dilute their message and fail to resonate with their audience. Avoid these four pitfalls to create a strong value proposition.

1. Vague messaging

Your value proposition needs to be clear and specific. Vague language can confuse your audience and dilute your message.

Don’t say: "We offer innovative solutions to improve business." Instead, say: "Our software increases your sales by 20% through real-time competitor insights."

Be precise about what you offer and the benefits customers will gain.

2. Over-promising

Making exaggerated claims can lead to disappointment and damage your credibility.

Don’t promise: "Double your revenue overnight!" Instead, offer a realistic benefit: "Improve your marketing strategy and see measurable growth within three months."

Be honest about what your product features can achieve.

3. Ignoring customer perspective

Your value proposition should speak directly to your customer’s needs and pain points. Don’t focus solely on your product’s features.

Don’t say: "Our platform has a customizable dashboard." Instead, highlight the benefit: "Easily track the metrics that matter most to you with our customizable dashboard."

Always consider how your product solves a problem or adds value from the customer’s viewpoint.

4. Lack of differentiation from competitors

If your value proposition sounds like everyone else’s, it won’t stand out. Identify what makes your product unique.

Don’t use generic statements: “We provide quality service.” Instead, specify your unique selling point: “Our 24/7 customer support ensures you get help whenever you need it.”

Clearly articulate what sets you apart from the competition.

Tools and techniques for developing a value proposition

Creating an effective value proposition requires the right tools and techniques. These methods will help you understand your market, define your unique value, and communicate clearly with your audience.

1. Value proposition canvas

The value proposition canvas is a strategic tool designed to align your product or service with customer needs. It consists of two main parts: the customer profile and the value map.

  • Customer profile: Identify your customer’s jobs (tasks they try to perform), pains (challenges they face), and gains (benefits they seek).
  • Value map: Outline how your product or service alleviates pains and creates gains.

Match elements of the value map to the customer profile to ensure your value proposition addresses real customer needs directly.

2. SWOT analysis

SWOT analysis helps you evaluate your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. This insight informs your value proposition by highlighting areas where you excel and identifying gaps you can fill.

Infographic showing what a SWOT analysis is
  • Strengths: What are you good at? What do customers love about your product?
  • Weaknesses: Where do you fall short? What can be improved?
  • Opportunities: What trends can you capitalize on?
  • Threats: What challenges do you face from competitors?

Use these insights to craft a value proposition that leverages your strengths and addresses potential weaknesses.

3. Customer journey mapping

Customer journey mapping visualizes the steps your customers take from awareness to purchase and beyond. This helps you understand their experience and identify touchpoints where your value proposition can make an impact.

Outline each stage of the customer journey:

  • Awareness: How do customers first learn about you?
  • Consideration: What factors influence their decision?
  • Purchase: What prompts them to buy?
  • Retention: How do you keep them coming back?

Use this map to ensure your value proposition addresses key moments in the customer journey effectively.

4. Message Map

A message map helps you structure and streamline your communication. It ensures consistency and clarity across all your messaging.

  • Core message: Start with a concise statement that sums up your value proposition.
  • Supporting messages: Add points that back up your core message. These should address specific benefits and features.
  • Proof points: Provide evidence that supports your claims, such as data, testimonials, or case studies.
Unkover inforgraphics for a message map
Image Source.

A message map keeps your value proposition focused and ensures all communication aligns with your core message. This technique helps you deliver a clear and compelling value proposition across different platforms and social media accounts.

You’ve written your value prop; now what?

Having a well-crafted value proposition is just the beginning. To maximize its impact, you need to communicate it effectively and measure its success. Here’s how to do that:

1. Communicate your value proposition

Once your value proposition is ready, it’s crucial to share it with your audience across various platforms. Consistent communication ensures that your message reaches and resonates with your target market.

  1. Website and digital presence. Your website is often the first touchpoint for potential customers. Ensure your value proposition is prominently displayed on your homepage, ecommerce landing pages, category pages, and product pages. Make it clear and concise.
  2. Sales and marketing materials. Include your value proposition in brochures, sales pitches, presentations, and advertising campaigns. Ensure consistency across all materials so your message is uniform and strong.
  3. Internal communication. Your team needs to understand and believe in your value proposition. Share it during training sessions, meetings, and internal documents or via mentorship platforms. Encourage everyone to use the same language when describing your products or services.

2. Measuring the effectiveness of your value prop

Assess whether your value proposition is working as intended. Use metrics and feedback to gauge its impact and make necessary adjustments.

  1. KPIs. Track key performance indicators (KPIs) to gauge the effectiveness of your value proposition. Look at conversion rates, customer acquisition costs, and lifetime value. If these metrics improve, your value proposition is working.
  2. Customer feedback and surveys. Ask your customers for feedback and use surveys to find out if they understand and value your proposition. Questions could include, “What attracted you to our product?” and “How would you describe our product’s main benefit?”
  3. Market response and sales data. After communicating your value proposition, analyze your sales data to see if there’s an uptick in interest and purchases. Look at trends over time to determine if your message resonates with your target audience.

Wrapping up

As we have seen, there is no fixed value proposition formula for most companies. Your value statement clearly depends on your ideal customer, industry, and product. Once you have that figured out, you can start crafting a value proposition that will move buying behaviors.

Your value proposition is what you offer and how it benefits customers. Key elements include clarity, uniqueness, and relevancy. Gather customer feedback regularly through surveys or conversations to gauge reception and make adjustments as needed.

Always keep an eye on your competitors and sales data. This will help you evaluate the success of your value proposition and make necessary changes to improve its effectiveness.

Use Unkover to automate competitive analysis and be one step ahead of your competitors. With our advanced technology, you can easily gather and analyze data from multiple sources to discover key insights about market trends, consumer behavior, and competitor strategies.

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FAQs

Understanding value propositions can be challenging, but these frequently asked questions will help clarify key points and provide actionable insights to enhance your company’s competitive advantage.

What is a value proposition example?

There are many value proposition examples you can check out for inspiration. Some successful companies with strong value propositions include Apple, Nike, and Airbnb. For example, Apple’s value proposition is “Think different” and focuses on their innovative and user-friendly products.

What’s most important is that a great value proposition clearly communicates the unique benefits of your service offers. For example, Dropbox’s value proposition is: “Securely share, sync, and collaborate on files anywhere.” This highlights the main benefits—security, synchronization, and collaboration—making it clear why users should choose Dropbox.

What are the three elements of successful value propositions?

Successful value propositions typically include:

  1. Clarity: Clearly state your brand offering.
  2. Relevance: Show how it solves a problem or improves a customer’s situation.
  3. Uniqueness: Highlight what makes your offering different from competitors.

What is the value prop exercise?

The value proposition exercise involves mapping out your customer’s needs and how your product meets those needs. Start by identifying your customers’ pain points and desired gains. Next, outline how your product addresses these issues and provides benefits. This exercise helps refine your value proposition to ensure it resonates with your target audience.

How to write a value proposition and how long should a value proposition be?

To write a value proposition, follow these steps:

  1. Identify your target customer: Know who you’re speaking to.
  2. Highlight the problem: Address a specific pain point or need.
  3. Present your solution: Explain how your product solves the issue.
  4. Showcase benefits: Focus on the tangible benefits users will experience.
  5. Differentiate your offering: Make it clear why your product is unique.

A value proposition should be brief—ideally one to two sentences. A succinct value proposition will grab attention quickly yet be detailed enough to convey significant value.

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