Most business owners already understand the importance of continually adding value to their business. It’s by knowing and consistently adding value, brands remains competitive and have the opportunity to grow.
Companies must focus on:
So what does value mean to your prospective buyers? Is it the competitive pricing? The free add-on services? Or is it the customer loyalty program?
Creating value is about staying relevant in your customer’s minds. It enables you to connect with what you do with what they value so your message resonate with them emotionally.
Pricing competition will shrink profit margins over time. Competing on value must be consistent with the change in the perception of value. This goes back to knowing your customer’s needs and bridging the gap between their needs and wants.
Here are 8 tips on what you can do to have an immediate impact on adding value to your brand:
1. Stay on top of your customer needs – Build solid relationships, setup Google alerts, search on Twitter or discussion forums, read all reviews.
Visit customers regularly, not only when they need something. Attend network events which is a great way to strengthen the relationship and expand your reach at the same time.
2. Be visible to your customers – Make sure they’re aware of your value continuously; try to remind them of your value strategically.
Offering an updated version of your product or tagging on a free service are good ways of letting your customer know you are constantly improving.
Convince your customer that your existence makes their lives easier, better, happier by providing them with information they value and care for.
3. Know your competition – Always be on the lookout for what others are doing out there. Be ready to explain your value proposition versus your competitors’.
You must be able to provide the facts to back up your claims.
4. Go the extra mile – Do things that are outside the scope of your business. Go above and beyond your normal routine by solving their “other” problems.
This will help you stand out from the competition.
5. Reward loyalty – Similar to the rewards program, give your customer something more for sticking with you or using your products and services.
It could be tickets to a cricket game, gift certificates or discounts for doing business with you in the future. You want to build a relationship that extends as long as possible so focus on customer lifetime value.
6. Try new ideas – If you’re in a highly commoditized market, you need to think about where you make your profits. Most of times there is no point in competing on price or service alone.
Try new ideas like the “freemium model” where it may be worth it to give some of your products or services away for free and charge for value-adds or premium account later in exchange for maintaining the relationship.
7. Improve experience – The entire experience in doing business with your company should be present from start to finish.
Try to make every step as frictionless as possible and think from your customer’s perspective.
They should know that they can contact you with their concerns with the expectation that you will respond quickly and effectively. This also creates great leverage for word-of-mouth marketing.
8. Include a human element – Many companies don’t focus enough on humanizing their brand. As a result, customers can feel out of touch. They need to feel like they are more than customers.