Added value is an important tactic that can be used by small businesses to acquire and retain customers, increase brand awareness, and differentiate one’s place in the marketplace. Don’t know where to start? Here are five ways to create added value that can be easily implemented into your business plan today:
1. Always consider your customers’ perspective
The art of creating added value starts with the ability to see your business through the eyes of your customers.
Consider what’s important to your target market and how your product or service will benefit them. What problem does it solve, how will it help them overcome obstacles or do their jobs better? Many businesses miss the boat by focusing on features instead of benefits. By shifting your focus to providing content that focuses on your customers’ needs you can start helping and stop selling.
Creating customer personas is helpful to provide insights about your current and future customers, what’s meaningful to them, and gives you a roadmap of the kind of content you can create and share to provide added value.
2. Consistently work to improve customer satisfaction
Although the debate over whether the customer is always right (or not!) continues, lack of customer satisfaction is a sure-fire way to keep people from coming back.
Soliciting honest feedback through surveys on a regular basis allows you to keep your finger on the pulse of your customers’ needs in their journey with your business and is also an opportunity to monitor your brand’s identity in the marketplace.
Free survey tools like Survey Monkey, KwikSurveys and SurveyPlanet offer easy-to-use templates and unlimited responses to ensure you can collect feedback and create an action plan based on the results.
3. Implement marketing models into your strategy
As you’re searching for ways to create added value, the use of popular marketing models can help your strategy take shape.
For small and medium businesses, the Four Cs model, Brand Essence Wheel, and SWOT Analysis tool will help you develop your brand’s value statement, define your unique selling point, and even forecast customer demands based on market trends.
4. Develop a memorable customer experience
Businesses with unforgettable customer experiences are more likely to benefit from word-of-mouth referrals, positive online reviews, and higher retention rates.
When getting started, you’ll need to consider all touch points of your business, from initial lead capture to post-purchase communication and how to properly maximize the added value for the customer throughout the process.
Building a customer experience also allows you to develop relationships with your customers so you can connect on levels that go past simply getting the sale.
Most importantly, memorable customer experience models aim to deliver unexpected intangible value that cannot be packaged or sold. This includes personalized service, attention to detail, and showing a sense of urgency to address concerns as they arise.
5. Never underestimate the value of free resources
Whether it’s a free guide, a printable PDF, or a company branded calendar, free resources are a great way to create added value and showcase your brand’s ability to offer ‘a little something extra’ to customers.
Free resources can also serve as useful tools to help grow a small business’s brand awareness and expose your target market to various products and services.
For brick and mortar stores, consider promotional materials featuring your company’s logo that can be given out in-store. Businesses with an online presence can use a customized sign up form to encourage visitors to sign up to hear more about special offers and promotions.
Remember, although you may be offering something for free, it still needs to have relevance to your market and should always be consistent with your brand’s overall purpose.
These five tips will help you think about a few ways you can add value now and in the future for your prospects and customers. What other methods do you use to add value for your customers? Let us know in a comment below.
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