In today’s episode, I’m talking about your value proposition! Specifically, I’m going to share with you three keys to creating a stronger value proposition.
If you understand what value proposition is and you want to strengthen yours, this is going to be a good episode for you. If you have no idea what I’m talking about when it comes to value proposition, it’s even more important that you read this episode, because it’s one of the core foundations of your business.
Here for the links referenced in the show notes?
Nail Your Niche free training: tashcorbin.com/niche
Core Messaging free template: tashcorbin.com/coremessage
It helps you to ensure that you are talking about your products, services and business in a way that connects with people’s desire to invest in working with you.
It’s the connection between someone thinking your offer looks cool, and someone actually buying it because they perceive it as valuable to them.
Let’s dive in!
First and foremost, what is a value proposition?
A value proposition is the value of the gap between before buying from and working with you, and after buying from and working with you.
It’s the value of that gap in the eyes of the buyer.
For example, when it comes to selling an online course, the value proposition of that course is: What is the difference in my life and lived experience going to be from now (before I buy it) to after (when I’ve completed the course)?
Similarly, when you sell your VIP packages, or even when you get people to sign up for something free (anything where you’re asking people to do something in return – whether it be give you money, time, attention, email address, etc.) has a value proposition. What is the value exchange that’s happening here?
Whatever the value of the gap is through the eyes of the beholder between before buying it and doing it and after buying it and doing it is the value proposition.
It’s important to understand that it’s through the eyes of the beholder, because different people will value a transformation in different ways and at different levels.
It’s like when you see someone create an amazing artwork and then crowdsource the value… they share it in a Facebook group, ask how much someone would pay for it, and one person will say $100, another will say $2,000.
The value of that piece of art is different through the lens of those different people.
It’s the same with the value of signing up for and coming to your webinar. Or the value of buying a single session with you.
Different people will value the transformation that you’re speaking about in different ways and to different levels.
If you offer services to help people Feng Shui their home to achieve big financial goals, then different people will perceive the value differently.
Someone who is in a job and has big financial goals but no capacity to earn commissions or increase their pay rate will struggle to see how feng shui will help them. Compare that to someone who has their own business, the energy that they’re in each day directly corresponds with how much money they make, and who can see a direct line of sight between setting big goals, aligning to them energetically, going for it and achieving them.
Different people in different situations will value that transformation differently.
It’s the same transformation, but they will value it differently.
The reason is because of that different connection with what is a priority for them. There can also be a different belief in the ability of the product to facilitate the transformation.
Knowing all of that about value proposition, here are the three keys to creating a stronger value proposition specifically for your paid offers…
Key 1: A viable and validated niche
When I say niche, I do not mean topic or modality… I mean the person who you are focused on promoting that offer to.
With that Fung Shui example, the niche of people in a job who don’t know how they’re going to make more money but have big financial goals are different in what they’re looking for and how you would articulate the value proposition compared to someone who has their own business and works in their home.
Therefore, if you try and market your product to both of those groups of people, it ends up becoming vague and fuzzy.
That means the tangible value proposition of that transformation is harder and harder for that niche (or lack thereof) to understand.
The more specific, tangible and validated your niche is, the more likely you are to be able to create a strong value proposition.
The more specific the niche, the stronger the value proposition can be.
If you are specific and tangible about how you help people to get more sales on social media – and specifically WHO you can help to get more sales on social media – the people within that niche are far more likely to see you as an expert and value your input and expertise than people who are not in that niche or people who randomly want to work on their social media but you don’t talk to any of their specific lived experiences… You don’t talk to their specific situation, therefore, you help with social media, but they don’t know if you’re going to be able to help them because of their specific needs.
Everyone believes that their challenges and goals are a unique combination.
They believe their personality and needs are unique, therefore, the more vague you are, the more it feels like you aren’t able to help them. Whereas the more specific you are to what’s going on specifically for them, the more you are an expert for them.
Specifying a niche can be a big resistance point for a lot of people. But remember: it’s not about the topic that you’re talking about. Feng Shui is not a niche, that’s a modality. Relationships is not a niche, that’s a topic area.
When I say niche, I mean something very specific. It’s who you are marketing your products and services to.
If you need help with niching, I have a free training called Nail Your Niche that walks you through the process of picking your niche so that you can create a stronger value proposition.
You can register for it here: tashcorbin.com/niche
For a lot of people, when I ask who they are marketing something to, the first thing they tell me is the age. But for most people, age is irrelevant to your marketing decisions, therefore, it’s not a necessary decision that you need to make about your niche.
When people give me an age range for their niche and say it’s 25 to 45-year-olds, I always question whether that means they don’t want to market towards 50-year-olds. In most cases, they’re happy to sell to a 50-year-old. So why are they specifying the age range??
Is there a decision that you’re going to make about how you market it, or what you’re saying in your marketing that’s different for 25-year-olds versus 45-year-olds?
Not necessarily… it’s actually about the specific situation that they’re in or the specific goal that they have. Therefore, you don’t need to talk about age, so don’t worry about it.
If that’s something that comes up for you, or if you feel like you need some help with niching, make sure to grab my free Nail Your Niche training: tashcorbin.com/niche
That’s the first key to a stronger value proposition – have a viable and validated niche.
Key 2: Speak about the tangible gap
The gap is the difference between before and after.
In order to make a stronger value proposition, you need to be able to talk about that tangible gap and how you bridge that gap with your offer. And we need to believe that you can bridge that gap.
If you say to me that we could do an energy healing session together and I will quadruple my income… without you even knowing what my income is… do I believe that just doing a one-off energy healing with you will quadruple my income? Probably not.
You sound like a snake oil salesperson because I don’t believe in the product delivering the transformation… I don’t believe the gap that you say you can fill, therefore I don’t value the product or service so I don’t buy.
A lot of people get caught up in this cycle of having to consistently expand the outrageous claims of what their product or service will create or do.
The reason that they need to do that is because they’ve put the pricing up, they need to create more urgency, or they’re trying to increase the value proposition. But in a lot of cases, it just gets more and more unrealistic as an outcome.
That’s a really good one to pay attention to.
I see it quite a lot in non-consent-based marketing strategies.
People will share examples of how their anonymous clients achieved million-dollar months, but they give no specific details in those testimonials. I understand that it can be to protect the person, but I often find it hard to believe that someone would want to be protected from their results being celebrated.
Some people can be hesitant about others knowing how much money they’re making, but often in the case of these anonymous testimonials, it’s because the result of that came from something unrelated to the work that they were doing, they’ve made it up or they’re overstating the claims, because they have this fear that if they don’t state that it’s worth $50,000, no one’s going to pay $5,000 to buy it.
People will also sometimes do value-based pricing in an attempt to fill that gap.
They’ll say that they’ve got a course that’s available for sale, and inside that course, you get:
- 12 modules – valued at $4,000
- Access to the Facebook group – valued at $1,000
- 6 live calls – valued at $10,000
This means the total value is $15,000, but you can buy it for $1,500.
They’re using valued at pricing to artificially generate a gap because in non-consent-based marketing strategy that is what you do. You try to falsely create or expand the gap between what you pay and what you get in return.
On top of that, value-based pricing is actually illegal in Australia.
(I’m not a lawyer, but go and check the ACCC website).
It just screams to me that you don’t think your product is valuable because you have to tell me your Facebook group is worth $1,000 when you’ve never once in your life charged someone $1,000 to join a Facebook group… so how is it valued at that price?
For a lot of business mentors and marketers, the way that they justify it is that they say that’s the likely value based on the return you’ll get from being in the Facebook group. But that’s not what they said! They said the Facebook group is valued at $1,000. And that’s a very different promise.
That’s a big bugbear of mine in marketing speak and I could probably go on about it for hours, but I won’t.
But you can see why people get caught up in this desire to artificially expand the gap. It makes them feel that it’s improving the value proposition of what they’re selling.
But in a lot of cases, the bigger you expand the gap to be, the more I have to believe that following your process is going to work. Often what then happens is you have to make the process sound so complex and involved that it just starts to sound like a lot of hard work.
To be honest with you, I don’t need that level of result. I’m happy with just getting halfway there. But if you’re telling me I have to do these exact 108 steps to have a six-figure business, then I don’t want to do 108 steps. I’d rather do 12 steps and get to a $50,000 business than have to do 108 steps to get to a six-figure business.
It starts to become a matter of how much I really want that outcome.
Honestly, the one thing I would say is rather than trying to artificially manufacture the gap, why don’t we just speak to the actual gap? The reasonable realistic gap that you are going to bridge, and the short, sharp, focused way that you can express how you get people across that gap quickly, easily and effectively. That is far more valuable.
That is going to increase your value proposition far more without the risk of turning clients off it or making people think you’re selling snake oil.
You don’t need to resort to trickery and marketing tactics that often scream that you don’t know how to talk about your offer and you’re afraid people think it’s not valuable so therefore you over-inflate the results people can expect.
All you’re doing is creating unrealistic expectations and demanding refunds. Don’t do that.
Create the gap by speaking to the before and after that is reasonable and fits the niche.
The other thing I want to say when it comes to the tangible gap is to stop underestimating your client’s ability to get themselves somewhere.
Something else that happens is that when people try to create that gap, they paint a picture of the before that is so disastrous, so horrendous, so miserable, and so incompetent, that no one is experiencing the before. Then the after feels like it’s less relevant.
I see this happen quite a lot when people say something like, “You’re tearing your hair out trying to get your social media content done each day.”
And that’s just not true. They’re not tearing their hair out, they just don’t enjoy the process.
That means your product doesn’t sound like it’s for me, because I’m not tearing my hair out. I’m not frustrated on a daily basis. I just don’t enjoy it that much, and I want something more enjoyable.
That’s the big problem I want to solve.
Don’t talk about the before as though it’s crisis mode all the time. Because if you do that in your value proposition, and all the befores feel really hard and yucky, then you can often be turning away the very people who are your most ideal clients.
Your most ideal client isn’t in misery right now. They are not flailing about thinking that there’s no way to solve this. They are not tearing their hair out every single day. They’ve tried some things and they’ve worked on some things but they just didn’t get the result they were looking for.
Speak to that, because then you’re actually going to resonate with people who are willing to take action. You’re going to resonate with people who aren’t in crisis mode, they’re just looking for a solution.
You’re going to resonate with people who haven’t tried every possible method, hey’ve just tried a few and they’re looking for something that’s a bit more aligned with what they need.
Sometimes we catastrophise the before so much that we end up turning away the people who are ready to invest and start resonating with the people who think that there’s no answer. They’re still all flailing about in nothing-will-work mode. They’re not even open to hearing about your solution or your product, because they fundamentally believe this is an unsolvable problem.
Has anyone done that before?
Because you’re trying to create this big gap and you don’t even realise you’re doing it or may not have done it from a conscious perspective, but that’s the type of messaging that you fall into because, at some level, you believe that the bigger the gap between the before and after the more people will see it as valuable.
But then if you drift away from a before situation that people resonate with, the after can be as pretty as you like, but they’re not interested because they don’t think that they are a right fit for it because they’re not in that catastrophe kind of space. They’re not in that desperation space. They’re actually great action-takers and they are actively looking for solutions, they just want one that feels like it’s going to meet their needs and get them where they want to go.
Those are the first two keys to creating a stronger value proposition. First is to niche. Second is to speak about the tangible gap in a meaningful way for your audience and help them to believe that you can get them to the after. And then…
Key 3: Align the outcomes you help people achieve with what’s a priority for them
This is where you can often tie yourself up in knots trying to meet everyone’s needs or trying to convince people that they should prioritise what you have to sell above what they currently prioritise. Neither of those is what we want to do.
What we want to do is understand how the gap aligns with what your niche (who are excited about bridging this tangible gap) naturally prioritises first.
If your niche naturally prioritises their family first and foremost, and you help people to spend less time in their business, then what is the priority that they have that you need to align saving time in your business to? Spending more time with family. Going to sports day with your kids. Having more time to go on adventures with your family.
If that’s what their priority is, then you can connect with that.
If your niche prioritises making money and financial freedom above everything else, then telling them you help them save time so they can spend more time with their family probably won’t resonate as strongly. It’s not as strong of a value proposition.
Instead, if you said that you help save them time in their business so that they can scale up to larger audiences and make more money in less time, then that’s going to be far stronger as a value proposition for someone who values financial freedom above all else.
This is where we need to decide on your niche… because the key to that tangible gap being communicated well and aligned with what people want and prioritise requires you to make a decision about who your niche is.
It requires you to commit to spending some time talking to and expressing your value proposition to that niche, and understanding what they’re looking for and what their priorities are.
The longer you try and appeal to everyone, the longer you will continue to appeal to no one in particular.
That is where that tangible, viable value proposition comes from, and that’s how you can make it stronger.
As I mentioned earlier, make sure you check out my Nail Your Niche free training: tashcorbin.com/niche
I also highly recommend that you check out my Core Messaging freebie.
This is where you get to write out your value proposition, bridge messaging, and your niche.
That freebie gives you prompts to test if you are able to express your value proposition, and if you know what your value proposition is.
For a lot of people, they think they have no idea what their value proposition is, but when they actually sit down to fill it in, they nail it straight away.
For others, they think they’ve got a really strong value proposition and they’re searching for every other reason why their offer is not selling, but when they sit down to fill in the Core Messaging template, they realise they have not articulated all elements of their value proposition in a way that’s meaningful for their niche.
Regardless of whether you think your value proposition is strong or not, I recommend you go check out that freebie: tashcorbin.com/coremessage
That freebie helps to walk you through the process of mapping out what your niche is, what your value proposition is, and what your bridge messaging is.
When you’ve got those three pieces together, that’s a strong core message on which you can build your offers, social content, blogs, podcast episodes, etc.
If you’ve got that value proposition clear, you’re going to make sure that everything then is aligned to bring in an audience that is hungry to buy your offer, and that understands and values the transformation that you facilitate. It’s going to make your sales and marketing processes far easier because you’re speaking to an audience who wants what you are talking about.
I hope you enjoyed those three keys to a stronger value proposition.
Thank you so much for joining me for this episode of the Heart-Centred Business Podcast.
Until next time, I cannot WAIT to see you SHINE.