by Todd Youngblood
For the last 90 days or so, I’ve been asking customers, prospects – actually everyone I talk to – to quickly state the overall value proposition for their organization. I’ve been amazed at the dismal quality of the responses.
Over half fell into what I’ll call the “I dunno” category. There literally were a few that didn’t know! Most, being the quick-witted sales type, made something up on the spot. Some actually sounded pretty good, but it wasn’t all that hard to pick up on the ad hoc nature of the statement. (Do we really think customers don’t have a fine-tuned BS detector?) “Well, ya’ got me!” was the most common response to me directly asking if they had just made it up. The most depressing were those that said, “Hang on, I’ve got that here somewhere…,” or “Um, oh, ah I’m pretty sure it’s on the web site.”
Most of the rest prefaced their reply with, “We’re still working on it,” and/or “We’re not happy with it yet.” At least they have conscious recognition of the importance of a compelling value proposition.
In the spirit of full disclosure, I’m “not totally happy with The YSP Group overall Value Proposition, and we’re still working on it.” Here it is though: “A well-executed Sales Process Engineering initiative can generate an 8 to 12% annual, incremental increase in your effective sales capacity.” I like the fact that it’s customer-focused, quantified and acknowledges that there’s no magic; i.e., its’ got to be well-executed.
What’s your value proposition? What are the characteristics of a compelling, overall value proposition? Use the comment section below to share your wisdom.