As always, the Startuppers Club helps you design your startup projects. You’ve managed to find a good idea to create your startup and you’ve even found a name that is still available. You’re good! So next step of the startupper-to-be is writing a good value proposition. Yet 3 statistics show that there is still work to be done:

  • 7 out of 10 products that come out on the market do not find any customers (according to a study by Simon-Kucher & Partners, 2014).
  • 82% of sites do not provide a clear understanding of what the company offers (according to a Convertize study, 2018).
  • 8 seconds. This is the average attention time it takes for an Internet user to know if he or she will stay longer on the site.

I – 3 criteria for a good value proposition

A good value proposition should ideally fit into one sentence. It is the promise you make to your customers in exchange for their trust. It must be kept by your product or service. 3 criteria are important for good writing:

  • Concrete
  • Relevant
  • Unique

1. How to make your proposal as concrete as possible to be easily understood?

A. Easy to understand and clear

Your value proposition must be very clear and easy to understand. Given the 8 decisive seconds to stay on a site, the Internet user must understand immediately what your startup proposes. A slogan or a short sentence should convey the overall idea. For example, you can’t use “Just do it” as a value proposition as it’s not self-explanatory at all. Nike can “do it” because the brand activity is already well-known.

B. Close to reality

The explanation of your concept must be as close as possible to reality so as not to create expectations or frustrations for the customer. Otherwise he would not be satisfied and will not come back. So, do not embellish the reality, but really explain what your startup can offer, what need it can meet etc…

C. Accuracy of the value proposition

The more specific the value proposition, the more likely the target customer will want to buy the product. For example, it is easy to see the difference between “learning how to negotiate” and “learning how to negotiate to buy property for a good price”. If you sell real estate training, then your wording becomes much more specific and your clients will know that you are offering exactly what they are looking for.

2. How do you make your value proposition relevant?

A. Targeting the customer’s need

Your value proposition must respond directly to the needs of your target customer. You need to determine how your service or product is in line with the customer’s wishes. The ideal if you have a website is even to understand what your target audience is typing to find you. In our recent example, he will certainly type “negotiate real estate purchase”. From an SEO and marketing point of view, it would therefore be a good idea to include these words in your wording. Perhaps “Learn how to negotiate to make a good real estate purchase” would be more appropriate.

B. Understand the value proposition you are looking for

This step is essential for a successful startup. Some ideas are good but do not correspond to any need and therefore do not reach any client.

Don’t hesitate to take some time at the beginning to understand the market expectations. What are the key points of the expected service? What are the points that do not bring value to the startup’s proposition? etc… To do this, you can conduct market research and approach your future customers to better understand them, to know what they dream of.

Taking time to define the need is key in entrepreneurship. This may save you from setting up a startup for nothing or having to shift your business model afterwards.

3. How to ensure the uniqueness of the concept?

A. What makes your value proposition unique?

Finally, the last step in the creation of the value proposition is to ensure the uniqueness of the concept. Of course, you can’t always be alone in thinking about an idea. But you have to try to explain why the offer you are proposing is the best fit, the best etc…

B. Examples of uniqueness of proposal

You can put forward a quality of service, speed of execution, outstanding reliability, or a different mindset from the competition… But the more you differentiate yourself, the more you will be able to federate your customers around strong values. A good example would be Apple and Samsung who both offer smartphones. But the value proposition is very different, and Apple customers are very loyal to their brand.

II. The Ultimate Goal of the Value Proposition: Converting Customers

Indeed, if the value proposition must be as adapted to the customer’s needs and its formulation as simple as possible, it is because it will serve to present your startup in a process of choice. The choice is made by the customer. Will he stay on your site? Does he want to buy your product? Will he be seduced by your service?

Like most startups, you probably have a website. Therefore, the objective of your value proposition is that your first visitors continue beyond the landing page or home page. To achieve this, you need to be punchy, make the web user want to go further to learn more. But to optimise these conversions, in addition to the above, you will have to go through AB Testing.

AB Testing to refine its value proposition

The concept of AB Testing is to test several versions of your value proposition and see which formulation converts the most future customers. Once you have determined the best wording, keep it and put it up against a new challenger. This test should be conducted on a large enough number of visitors to be meaningful.

Advertising to conduct your value proposition test

If your site is not yet attracting enough visitors, then running an AB Testing campaign can be complicated. So you can pay to go faster by running an advertising campaign. Target your target customer with a Google AdWords campaign, advertising on Facebook or any other social network.