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What is Value Proposition Design

stockicebergOften expressed as a condensed statement representing the "elevator pitch" for your company, your value proposition statement is just the visible tip of the iceberg.

Your Value Proposition is much more than a marketing or positioning statement for promotional purposes. Expressing the very foundation of your business, it emerges from a rigorous and comprehensive analysis of several factors. Design starts with a solid understanding of your target customer, their needs, goals, and motivations. Then, the individual components of your market offering(s) must be connected to specific customer needs. In situations where you might be simultaneously serving multiple customers, a multi-dimensional Value Proposition may be needed to be effective.
The way your offering(s) connect with your customers' needs must also take into consideration what your competitors are doing.  Creativity and innovation are needed to develop elements that are not only compelling to the customer, but also provides distinctive differentiation from your competition. Potential areas of innovation include finding new ways to meet specific needs, adding features to address unmet customer goals, or reaching beyond just functional needs.  Any identified potential enhancement must then be validated with customers to assure the Value Proposition is truly delivering what matters to them.  This is often done in a cyclic pattern of customer feedback and value proposition changes to arrive at a final compelling and competitively superior result. feedback
The resulting design activity is a messy, non-linear, iterative process involving a continuous back and forth between designing prototypes and testing them to evolve a high quality, compelling, and competitive superior Value Proposition.  If you haven't been through such a process, then you are likely not to be among the 5% of business that have a high quality value proposition, and likely to be in the 2/3 of companies that will fail to survive 10 years.  messy process

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