Part 15 – Do You Want to Make Money Or Do You Want to Provide Value?

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WARNING: The following is business and marketing heresy.

Your business probably wants to provide value and make money at the same time. It sounds simple but what does that imply if your competitors start undercutting the prices you charge?

1 – Value is assigned by your clients and customers, not you.

This is a major mistake companies of all sizes make. They try to sell and market value. What they actually try to sell is a marked up cost. That is not value. Value is what the customer gets after he pays you. Only the customer can determine the value. You assign the price you charge. That is not the value. What you perceive as value is not what your client sees. Saying you get a $100 value and you’re charging $9.99 is “marketing smell”. It works for any time a company tries to sell “value”. Value is perceived after the sale and is different for every customer. Don’t try to market “value”.

2 – Market possible benefits not value.

Market objective benefits, not value. Be honest. Don’t say you WILL experience happiness. Be concrete about what you can deliver. That means be objective. Don’t try to market “possible side effects” that make your clients happy. Market just what the customer gets. They will evaluate the value regardless of what you try to sell them as value. You may be surprised at what your customers consider valuable.  Provide what you promise not “closed course, professional driver, do not attempt”.  Bait and switch in the loose sense of the phrase never succeeds in the long term.

3 – Don’t use the “bandwagon”.

Sure it works. Everyone wants to be the latest celebrity or have their endorsement. If you want to do that, that’s ok. Just don’t believe you are selling “value” as a result. You’re taking a shortcut. Most companies love shortcuts to wealth and chase celebrity endorsements as a result. It never improves the quality of the product or service that is delivered.

4 – Quality is less subjective than value.

It is easier to sell quality if you can back it up. You can never back up the “value” you sold. Value, again, depends on the perceptions of a single company or individual. A million companies may tout the value you provide, but it only takes one to bring it all down. Yes value is related to quality but they are different “animals”.

5 – Quantities sold or delivered is not an indication of quality or value.

Bandwagon again.

So what should you try to sell? Value? Quality? Or do you just want people to give you money? What do you value?

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