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Your Unique Value Proposition is Your Key to Attracting Customers

June 23, 2015 by Carrie Maslen

A millennial entrepreneur in a thriving urban center in India asks how he can attract more customers into his shop. Define your unique value proposition, advises the Small Business Coach.

The Business

A small optician shop in India that provides services and products – including eye tests, contact lenses, and sunglasses – to customers who are generally between the ages of 20-45.

The Challenge

“I am a businessman and I am just 19 years old. I would like some tips to grow my business and want to do something unique in the market. My shop is not seeing the same good sales results as other shops.”

The Advice

A critical first step for you is to establish your value proposition. What is the unique value that you will offer to your customers? Are you going to build your value, brand and reputation on:

  • Low price?
  • Fast delivery?
  • Unlimited options for your consumers?
  • High level of customer service?

There are many options, and you need to pick the one that will be the cornerstone of your philosophy.  It is not possible to deliver all of these to your customers, so you will need to focus on the most essential cornerstone and build your business plan around it.

It is also important to understand how your value proposition differentiates your company from your competitors. If your competitors are all taking a Low Price approach, then I would recommend a High Value or some other angle so you stand apart from them.

One other key element is to understand how your customers prefer to get their information. Do you know where they go for trusted advice? Is advertising important to them or are word-of-mouth referrals more influential? With so many millennials in your target customer segment, do you have a presence on social media? If referrals are key, how are you encouraging your existing customers to spread the word about your business?

The Entrepreneur’s Reaction

“Thank you, I will consider your advice in my business. First, I will take the feedback from the existing customers about their tastes and preferences. Then, I’ll develop an approach according to it. Competitors seem to be interested in providing the lowest price. So, I may want to focus on quality. Still, I’ll reply to you with the results of the survey and then discuss an approach for the future.”

The Small Business Coach

Carrie Maslen_SBCThis week’s Small Business Coach is Carrie Maslen, Vice President of Small and Medium Enterprises (SME), SAP. Twitter: @carriemaslen

If you have a question about how to run your small business better, smarter, and faster – send it in to The Small Business Coach using the form below or email it to newsroom@sap.com. Be sure to follow SAP’s latest news and events for small business on Facebook and Twitter @SAP4SmallBiz.

The questions and reactions that appear here have been lightly edited for style and format.

Read more from The Small Business Coach series.

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