I hope your weekend has been fantastic. It’s starting to cool down here in Florida, which serves as a reminder that the holiday season is right around the corner.
The holiday season is my favorite time of year.
It’s full of happy memories for me - all the awesome holiday movies, the food, the long weekends, the smells of the season, and the great times with friends and/or family.
Speaking of cooler weather, I recently came across this ad from @bigblanketco that I thought was brilliant.
This ad caught my attention for several reasons.
Reason 1 - It didn’t look like an ad, so it kind of tricked me into stopping what I was doing to read it.
Reason 2 - The company’s response to the request for smaller blankets.
They could have replied with a generic, “We’ll let our team know your feedback and take that into consideration when creating new products.”
But instead, they replied in a fun and authentic way that stands by what they sell, and shows the company’s personality.
In the marketing world, we call this knowing your value proposition (sometimes called a unique selling proposition or USP.)
What is a value proposition?
A value proposition is the promise of value that a customer can expect a business to deliver. It’s more than just a product or service description — it’s the specific solution that your business provides to a customer which a competitor can’t offer. (Source: Hubspot)
Your value proposition is one of the most essential pieces of content you’ll ever create for your brand.
Without it, your target audience won’t know what makes you unique. They won’t understand why they should buy from you instead of your competitors.
Pretend for a moment that you’re in the market for a new blanket.
You go to Website A, and the first thing you see is a picture of a blanket and a headline telling you to use code FALL2021 to get free shipping on all blankets.
Not very compelling, but it’s just a blanket, so you keep that tab open and go to Website B.
As soon as you get to Website B, you see pictures of clouds and a headline that says “Sleep in comfort.”
Okay, that sounds kind of appealing, but are they referring to? Pajamas? Mattresses? Underwear? Blankets? Socks?
Credit: CBC on Giphy
Who knows because while they’re addressing a solution to a problem by saying that you’ll sleep in comfort, you have no idea what they sell.
So you close that tab and go to Website C.
Front and center of Website C, you see people using a blanket, with the words “The Biggest, Best Blankets in the World.”
So immediately, you know that you’re in the right place since you’re looking for a blanket. And now you’re intrigued because not only do they sell blankets, but they sell the biggest blankets, and apparently they’re the best blankets in the world.
Are they actually the best blankets in the world?
I don’t know because I don’t own one, nor am I affiliated with their brand. But I’m intrigued by their messaging.
Sure, I could click on SHOP NOW and realize I don’t need a 10’ x 10’ blanket, and I don’t want to spend $160 on one. But that’s a personal choice.
They did a great job explaining what they sell and what makes them different from every other blanket out there.
How to write your value proposition
Writing your value proposition shouldn’t be hard.
Yes, it’s probably the most important statement your brand will ever make, but I find that when you overthink things, they feel forced and inauthentic.
So here’s my super-easy recipe for writing your value proposition.
Visit the websites of products that have lured you in with their marketing. Make a note of each of their headlines (because it’s usually their value proposition.) Use these headlines as templates for how you should structure your value proposition.
Know the problem you solve inside and out. You’ve got to be obsessed with the problem. You also need to know all the different solutions people use to solve this problem.
Determine how you’re different from the competition. Why should people go with your product or service over all the other solutions? Pro-tip: lower prices should never be your value proposition. Having a lower price could boost your value proposition (if that’s what you want.) But it certainly shouldn’t be THE value proposition because someone could show up with even lower pricing, leaving you scrambling to stand out among your competitors.
Put together a statement that combines what you sell or do, the problem you solve, and what makes you different.
Simplify what you just put together so that a regular person understands it within seconds of reading it.
You don’t need to spend months working on your value proposition (although I do recommend you spend lots of time researching your problem and competitors.)