Deliberate Value

All successful business ventures add value to their customers. Sometimes it’s a deliberate and purposeful act, sometimes it just seems to happen as a byproduct of their interaction.

We suggest there are 5 major categories of value in the B2B space, each with specific sub-types for application.

Value represents your ability to fulfill on your intentions. At a corporate level this sounds simple enough, yet at the marketing / sales / channel / product manager level, much is lost in translation.

Differential Value

All successful business ventures add value to their customers. Sometimes it’s a deliberate and purposeful act, sometimes it just seems to happen as a byproduct of their interaction.

We suggest there are 5 major categories of value in the B2B space, each with specific sub-types for application. Value represents your ability to fulfill on your intentions. At a corporate level this sounds simple enough, yet at the marketing / sales / channel / product manager level, much is lost in translation.
Strategic Value Financial Quality Competitive
To paraphrase Curly from the movie City Slickers, “What’s the one thing that matters?”.

Successful sales and marketing begins with powerful positioning predicated on your Unique Selling Proposition. Some prefer to call it a unique Value Proposition. Some combination of your offerings, intellectual property, service quality, and product characteristics result in a Quantifiable Value Proposition.

If you can’t defend the numbers, or your claim sounds like everyone else you simply won’t succeed, no CRM can save you, and sales training will be a wasted effort. SEO and all promotional efforts might get you found, yet if your not selling and promoting your differential value, you’ll end up with too many NoDecisions or Losses simply because the buyer couldn’t tell the difference between you and everyone else.

Does your Value Proposition have definable Business Value?

Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts.
Anonymous
Sales & Marketing professionals are pretty darn good at discussing functional value. You know, the speeds and feeds of it, how your suff is bigger, better, faster than the incumbent. Many call these the speeds and feeds of technology sales, often expressed in terms of the many TLAs - Three Letter Acronyms that every industry enjoys.

Yet functional value is simply a means to an end, something by which the customer, or your customer’s customer can enjoy tangible improvement. This may be Emotional value or it may be Economic value. Typically a hybrid of both is needed to get the deal done an the customer on their way to enjoying the fruits of their investment.

Does everyone tell the same Customer Value story?

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From the top to the bottom of your organization, is everyone on the same page when it comes to Value?

Poll your executive team individually, by asking each of the them what financial value the company creates for their top segments. The poll marketing, then sales, and then services. Be prepared for a surprise. Restated, can everyone tell the same story?

When you ask this question, you will hear many responses about what your company does, what it builds, the goods it delivers, and many platitudes about high quality, integrity, hones, trustworthy, and so on. These are all good things, indicating a belief in the company, yet none of them address the question. And that’s a problem.


All the oars need to be in the water, and pulling in the same direction.