How do you define your product key value proposition?
August 26, 2019
August 26, 2019
The phrase key value proposition is critical to most startup success as every investor and advisor you meet early on will ask the same question, what is your key value proposition? Many product teams struggle to understand what this means and why it is so important to know deeply especially for the product manager driving the product roadmap future. Your product key value proposition really defines concisely why your product is the best option in the pool of competition. What about your product makes you stand out from the rest and would convince a potential user to pay for the solution or an investor to see what makes you different from what already exists.
If Uber said they made a taxi company that can help people get from place A to place B that is not really going to convince anyone they have any value from existing options. A good key value proposition is one that shines the light on what you are doing different to make your product better and therefore more likely to succeed over the available options. Therefore, Uber describing their key value proposition as a technology company that utilizes independent contractors for drivers to scale and provide transportation on demand using a mobile app helps you mentally compare that to a yellow cab driving around. As you think about your product you need to think about what makes you different. If you cannot think of something, you should go back to the drawing board as your product needs to be able to stand on something special in a crowded space.
Ingredients of a great key value proposition
- Get to the point as quick as possible. Be clear and easy to follow in your description.
- Say what you do and how you do it differently.
- Tie your key value proposition back to the customer and the pain point you solve for them.
Most product teams and startups can get long winded with explaining their key value proposition. They want to continue to sell their idea and keep flowing with their ideas rather than having it down, concise and proven to convince others to why the idea is rock solid. To sell your idea and build your product, you need to nail the key value proposition and if you do, people will believe in you and your product. So with the statement being so important, it is as important to know the important ingredients as it is on what not to do when you work on writing out yours.
Most common mistakes of writing a key value proposition
- All gut feeling, no facts. You need to be able prove why your solution is important and valuable. Surveys, data points and just plain old facts. Don’t say it is great because you believe it is important or you see a gap in the market. You need to really be able to show it with evidence.
- Too vague. You need to be clear on your key value otherwise you will just sound like another solution that has nothing that stands out. Really sell and emphasis what you are going to do with your product as the product manager to make it stand out.
- Assume your audience knows nothing. When you define your key value, you need to assume the user or investor knows nothing about you or your solution so make it clear, make it crisp and understandable to get the most out of it.
Most product teams have a small window to make an impression on a user or investor and to make the most out of that they need a concise key value proposition that says how they are the best option for them and what will make the person want to do business with them. Your marketing message, your product roadmap and overall approach to your product and business should be around driving and delivering the key value proposition to your target market to solve their pain points in order to be successful.