7 of the best value proposition examples we’ve ever seen

The Two Sides of the Value Proposition Canvas Explained

Value Proposition Canvas – Understanding customer needs vs the number of ideas in a business

Most companies struggle with innovation because those responsible for conceptualizing, developing and evaluating ideas for new product/service offerings struggle with the “needs” side of the equation.


The customer profile is where you reframe your thinking and delve deeply into the ‘jobs’ that customers are trying to get done.

The Customer Profile

The customer profile section of the canvas has three sections:

  1. Customer Jobs: The things customers are trying to get done in their work or life.
  2. Gains: The outcomes and benefits your customers want to achieve.
  3. Pains: The annoyances and problems customers experience before, during or after trying to get a job done.

value proposition canvas – the customer profile

The principle is to use the Jobs To Be Done framework to create products or services that improve customers lives.

The Value Map

  • Products and Services: A list of what you offer and may consist of service, product or both.
  • Gain Creators: How your product or service creates customers gains – outcomes and benefits your customers expect.
  • Pain Relievers: How you eliminate the things that annoy your customers.

Value Proposition Canvas – The Value Map

Achieving Fit

The fit is achieved when your customer recognizes your value proposition and takes action. The goal of the process is to test and refine your value proposition until you get fit across three stages:

  1. Problem-solution fit: Is achieved when you have evidence of the jobs, pains and gains that customers care about. At this stage, you are developing the value proposition and validating your ideas.
  2. Product-market fit: Is achieved when you test your solution in the market and get traction of your value proposition directly with customers. Often this isn’t a perfect fit and you will need to pivot and refine your value proposition to improve product-market fit.
  3. Business Model Fit: Is achieved when you design how a business is organized (resources, activities, partners) to create a profitable (revenue model) business model that is scalable.

Special Considerations

Value propositions can follow different formats as long as they are unique to the company and to the consumers the company services. All effective value propositions are easy to understand and demonstrate specific results for a customer using a product or service. They differentiate a product or service from any competition, avoid overused marketing buzzwords, and communicate value within a short amount of time. For a value proposition to effectively turn a prospect into a paying customer, it should clearly identify who the customers are, what their main problems are, and how the company’s product or service is the ideal solution to help them solve their problem.

A new value proposition canvas template

I’ve created a canvas to guide startups into examining the human experience of their customers. This canvas contains questions and sections that manoeuvre users of the canvas into thinking through the end-customer experience.

Each section of the improved canvas includes questions to ask when filling in the chart.

The new product section of the canvas uses the widely accepted marketing syntax of features and benefits with the addition of a box for “experience” (taking from the fields of design thinking and UX architecture). The product understanding section includes:

  • Features – A feature is a factual description of how your product works. The features are the functioning attributes of your product. The features also provide the ‘reasons to believe’. Many FMCG marketers deride the importance of features because features are no longer a point of difference in most FMCG marketing. But for technology products and innovative new services the features on offer can still be an important part of your value proposition.
  • Benefits – A benefit is what your product does for the customer. The benefits are the ways that the features make your customer’s life easier by increasing pleasure or decreasing pain. The benefits of your product are the really core of your value proposition. The best way to list out the benefits of your product on the canvas is to imagine all the ways that your product makes your customer’s life better.
  • Experience – The product experience is the way that owning your product makes the customer feel. It’s the sum total of the combined features and benefits. Product experience is different to features and benefits because it’s more about the emotional reasons why people buy your product and what it means for them in their own lives. The product experience is the kernel that will help identify the market positioning and brand essence that is usually built out of the value proposition.

The customer section draws on nuero-lingusitic programming and psychology research into motivation and choice architecture. It focuses less on “pains” and “gains” because people can be motivated by both pains and gains in different ways. The customer empathy sections include:

  • Wants – The emotional drivers of decision making are things that we want to be, do or have. Our wants are usually conscious (but aspirational) thoughts about how we’d like to improve our lives. They sometimes seem like daydreams but they can be powerful motivators of action. The wants speak more to the pull of our hearts and our emotions. I may need a car to get from A to B, but I want a BMW.
  • Needs – The customer’s needs are the rational things that the customer needs to get done. Interestingly, needs are not always conscious. Customers can have needs that they may not know about yet. Designers call these “latent needs“. The best example is that none of us knew that we needed a portable music player until we saw an iPod for the first time (we also then suddenly wanted an iPod rather than any other perfectly good music player). The needs speak more to the pull of our heads and rational motivations.
  • Fears – The dark side of making a decision is that it often carries a fear of giving up optionality. Fear of making a mistake, fear of missing out, fear of loss and dozens of other related fears. Fears can be a strong driver of purchasing behaviour and can be the hidden source of wants and needs. Customer fears are often the secret reason that no one is buying your widget. For any product there is a secret “pain of switching“. Even if your product is better than the competition, it might not be a big enough improvement to overcome the inertia of the status quo.
  • Substitutes – Some companies claim that they have no direct competitors. The substitutes on the canvas aren’t just the obvious competitors, instead look for the existing behaviours and coping mechanisms. This is on the canvas because it shocks us into remembering that our customers are real people with daily lives who have made it this far in life without our product. No matter how much better your product is than the competition, if it isn’t better than the existing solutions then you don’t have a real-world value proposition.

A key finding from the process of mapping a value proposition is often “we don’t have enough information to answer this section”. That is a perfect moment to adopt a lean startup approach and to get out of the building to ask existing customers and potential customers about their wants, needs and fears. A value proposition canvas can be a great place to begin the process of identifying and validating your assumptions.

Потоки доходов (Revenue streams)

Потоки доходов

Потоки доходов описывают источники, из которых компания получает прибыль. В бизнес-модели существует два типа источников дохода: доход от разовых сделок (продажа товара) или регулярные платежи за подписки или постпродажное обслуживание.

Есть несколько способов сформировать источники дохода:

  • Продажа товаров. Самый очевидный поток доходов. Товары можно продавать конечным потребителям или дилерским сетям.
  • Плата за использование услуги. Этот поток возникает от оплаты пользования некоторой услугой. Чем больше клиент пользуется сервисом, тем больше платит. Оператор связи взимает плату за минуты разговора, в отеле гость платит за количество дней.
  • Оплата подписки. Этот поток доходов возникает от оплаты фиксированной подписки за безлимитное или условно-безлимитное пользование сервисом. Например это может быть абонемент в тренажёрный зал или доступ к музыкальному сервису на месяц.
  • Аренда. Этот поток возникает в результате передачи потребителю временных прав на пользование определенным активом. Арендодатель получает доход, а потребитель — возможность пользоваться активом тогда, когда нужно, не платя полную стоимость. Так работают, например, каршеринговые сервисы.
  • Лицензия. В этом потоке потребителю передаются права на пользование защищенной интеллектуальной собственностью. Это может быть право на воспроизведение контента или патентные отчисления за использование технологии.
  • Комиссия. В этом случае доходы поступают от различных типов посреднических действий. Например, сервис частных объявлений может получать процент от сделок, совершенных посетителями сервисами.
  • . Этот поток доходов создаётся от продажи целевой аудитории рекламодателям. Например тот же сервис частных объявлений может получать плату за показы или переходы по рекламным баннерам, которые он размещает на своих страницах.

Каждый поток доходов имеет свои механизмы ценообразования, которые напрямую связаны с ценностным предложением.

Коротко:

Задайте себе эти вопросы, чтобы заполнить блок:

Wrapping up

To sum up, let’s recall some key takeaways:

  • The value proposition canvas definition is a graphical expression of what clients need and suffer from, and what a product can offer to cope with that.
  • The tool originates from the business model canvas.
  • The combination of these tools gives a powerful solution to analyze a business and discover the ways of its improvement.
  • The canvas consists of two parts – customer segments (circle on the right) and value map (square on the left).
  • The more matches you have between the components specified in the right and left parts, the more chances you have to deliver a much-in-demand product.
  • The tool will be useful for both startupers and current entrepreneurs willing to improve their business.

From our side, we recommend you to give a shot and experience the canvas in action. It’s most likely that you’ll enjoy its effect and find it useful for future projects.

Mint

Recently updated, Mint’s value proposition grabs your attention with its aspirational message.

Having a good grasp on money and personal finances is key to reaching many long-term goals and planning for the future (i.e. buying a house, retiring, etc.).

As the statement suggests, though these landmarks may seem distant (like horizons) or even far-fetched, they will not only be more attainable than you think but also accomplished sooner with the help of Mint.

 The vague messaging could also be seen as one of urgency; encouraging people to get their finances in order now as some «horizons» can arrive sooner than we expect. 

 14. Weebly


With so many players in the market today, Weebly positions itself as the «easiest» option to make a website, blog, or online store today. Need a web presence now and considering Squarespace, Wix, or Webs? Weebly’s value proposition sets out to make sure its prospects know there’s no faster or easier way to get started than with its platform. 

15. Tortuga Backpacks

While many people may associate backpacks with school kids, Tortuga makes it clear in its value proposition that this is not its market. Making «travel backpacks for International, Urban Travel,» the brand is going after hardcore travelers who are annoyed at the thought of checking bags and inspired by that of backpacking. Its imagery and messaging resonate perfectly with this audience.

Evernote: ценностное предложение и маркетинговые посылы

«Эверноут» перенёс своё ценностное предложение прямиком в маркетинговые материалы. На посадочных страницах описаны отличительные свойства, выгоды продукта и впечатления от его использования. Предложение компании и нужды клиента находятся в полной гармонии.

В основе ценностного предложения «Эверноута» — простота и скорость.

Описание характеристик, выгод и впечатлений от использования продукта отвечает желаниям, соответствует потребностям целевой аудитории и развеивает её страхи. «Эверноут» запустил несколько посадочных страниц для разных продуктов и групп клиентов.

Все составляющие ценностного предложения «Эверноута«m отражены на одной посадочной странице.

Текст «Эверноута» можно улучшить, добавив к нему ещё несколько распространённых страхов, таких как потеря данных, необходимость резервного копирования и возможность переноса информации.

Steps for using the Framework

In short, following are the main steps for using the framework effectively and efficiently;

  1. Jot down all the products and services in your portfolio which combine to make up your value proposition
  2. Describe how your value proposition contributes to eliminate your target customer’s pain points. Separate sticky notes should be used for each pain reliever
  3. Describe how your value proposition contributes a positive result for your target customer. Separate sticky notes should be used for each gain creator.
  4. Ultimately all three elements; products and services, pain relievers and gain creators should be ranked according to their relative importance to the target customer.

Understanding a Value Proposition

A value proposition stands as a promise by a company to a customer or market segment. The proposition is an easy-to-understand reason why a customer should buy a product or service from that particular business. A value proposition should clearly explain how a product fills a need, communicate the specifics of its added benefit, and state the reason why it’s better than similar products on the market. The ideal value proposition is to-the-point and appeals to a customer’s strongest decision-making drivers.

Companies use this statement to target customers who will benefit most from using the company’s products, and this helps maintain a company’s economic moat. An economic moat is a competitive advantage. The term—coined by super-investor Warren Buffett of Berkshire Hathaway—states that the wider the moat, the bigger and more resilient the firm is to competition.

A great value proposition demonstrates what a brand has to offer a customer that no other competitor has and how a service or product fulfills a need that no other company is able to fill.

Summary and Some Key Points When Using The Value Proposition Canvas

If you run a workshop using the value proposition canvas, you will be amazed at the examples, insights and progress you make. The value proposition canvas is a tool that enables people to share a common mental model of the customer, how the business generates value and what possibilities exist to innovate.

  1. It’s important to realise that you won’t know if you have the right value proposition until you test it with customers. However, using this guide will help you to understand how to craft compelling value propositions.
  2. You will need different value propositions for different customer segments. Think deeply about how your segments differ in how, why and when they try and get jobs done.
  3. Once you think you have some insights then test them out. Use different methods to validate your ideas and insights.
  4. Developing a value using desktop only research and data doesn’t work. Too often a business will use what they about a customer as the basis for developing a product or service – that approach contributes to the massive failure rate of new products that still exists. Walk in the shoes of your customer, observe them, ask questions, be curious and test ideas.

When to Use a Cover Letter

When an employer asks for a cover letter. If a job application specifically requests that you send a cover letter with your application, be sure to do so. If you do not follow directions exactly, you risk having your application thrown out.

When you need to explain something on your resume. If there is something on your resume that could give a hiring manager pause, such as an employment gap, your cover letter is your chance to explain these circumstances and emphasize why you are the right person for the position. A value proposition letter does not provide enough space for you to explain past work issues, so write a cover letter when a longer explanation is needed.

The definition

According to Wikipedia, “a value proposition is a promise of value to be delivered, communicated, and acknowledged. It is also a belief from the customer about how value (benefit) will be delivered, experienced and acquired.”

For me, this definition doesn’t cut it. To keep things on track, let’s use my definition:

A value proposition is a product, service, or experience that creates desired gains or relieves existing pains.

To design a compelling value proposition, you must understand the desired gains and existing pains of the people you aim to serve. Through this process you may also uncover unexpected gains. 

This isn’t always easy, so let’s start getting practical.

Tool 1: The Business Model Canvas

Osterwalder’s work on Business Model Ontology and Business Model Generation gave birth to the Business Model Canvas.

Business leaders all over the world now rely on the Business Model Canvas and adaptations like the Lean Canvas. In a simple format, they describe how a company delivers its value proposition/s to its target customers.

Though it’s used by business stakeholders, the Business Model Canvas can and should form part of the design process. It’s a useful tool to help highlight the business value of the design function. It can also help you define the economics of design.

In practical terms, this canvas can be used to:

  • Design hypotheses
  • Conduct tests
  • Communicate with stakeholders and;
  • Inform strategic priorities

Programs like Steve Blank’s Lean LaunchPad (used by the National Science Foundation) and organizations like LaunchPad Central have systemized this process. The results speak for themselves.

Image via Strategyzer.

By using the canvas, organizations can measure progress through learning velocity and other key metrics. This supports the desire for data-driven decision-making, even before the money rolls in.

Step 5. Products and Services

The products and services part of the value proposition canvas is simply a list of what you offer.

Action: Place your post-it notes on the scale and move them up or down until you have them in order.

Depending on your product/service or business you want to focus on the top three to five.

Products and services also should include the supporting services that you offer to customers e.g. 24/7 phone line or instant chat.

Types of products and services

  • Physical/Tangible: Physical products that you sell e.g. hairdryer, jeans, car…
  • Intangible: Services that support your product e.g. training, after-sales support.
  • Digital: Products and/or services that are digital e.g. Software as a Service, music downloads, reports as digital files…
  • Financial: Products such as investment funds, insurance…

Create a list of the most relevant and rank them based on their relevance: essential vs. nice to have.

Best practices & Common mistakes when using the Framework

Best Practices

  1. List only the combination of products and services that directly provide value to the relevant customer segment.
  2. Pain reliever and gain creators list characteristics of your products and services that are of relevance to the target customers.
  3. Products and services will be of value to customers only if they match the target segment’s profile, pains and gains
  4. It is imperative for an entrepreneur to understand that no product or service will be able to meet all the pains and gains in a customer’s profile. Instead the entrepreneur needs to prioritize which pains and gains their product and service should match.

Common Mistakes

  1. Mention all the products and services in your portfolio regardless of the specific customer segment they target.
  2. Categorize your products and services as either pain relievers or gain creators.
  3. Add additional pain relievers and gain creators even if they don’t match the pains or gains in your target segment’s profile
  4. Try to resolve all pains or gains of the target segment.

CASE STUDY

Evernote is an online company aiming to provide mobile professionals with the capability to take notes while they are on the move.

The main webpage provides a detailed overview of how the product and its various features can help its target market store organize and interpret a seemingly random hodgepodge of information and data. The website makes the features of the service as well as the overall experience come alive for the consumers, helping them understand how they can benefit by using the service.

The trifecta of the service features, the advantages of using Evernote and the overall customer experience are matched exactly to the customers wants, needs and fears. The company has also created further bifurcation of its customer segment so that each page is tailored to a specific kind of customer with the inherent benefits the customer can reap mentioned as well, creating a rudimentary level of customization.

The website’s value proposition is a quick and simple tool that syncs easily with other platforms so sharing ideas is convenient.

Why Invest in Crafting Your Value Proposition?

Value Proposition examples – Benefits

I’ve walked into loads of businesses and asked the simple questions “why should a customer buy from you?”.

Most CEO’s, marketing officers and teams usually reply with a long list of reasons centred around the features and benefits of their products or services or they simply rant on about how great they are as a company.

Few hit the mark and tell me their value proposition and even fewer make it easy to understand.

That means they haven’t invested in the fundamentally understanding their customer and that is risky ground to be on.

While you may have traction because of a brand or p[roduct that doesn’t guarantee the future of the business.

Stripe

In this value proposition example, Stripe makes it clear that its web and mobile payment products are specifically made for developers and tech-savvy businesses. 

Its APIs and tools are comprehensive, state-of-the-art, and trustworthy for businesses that demand nothing less. This statement is also aided cleverly by the image of two cell phones, each highlighting a different, well-known Stripe customer. 

 2. MailChimp

 3. Lyft

 Unlike others on our list, Lyft skillfully targets two different personas at the same time with two distinct value propositions. Both clear and concise, one speaks to who want to get rides and the other to those who want to give them. 

While many companies would shy away from this, Lyft’s approach is highly effective yet subtle with the help of tasteful design.

 4. Dollar Shave Club

By now, we all know and love Dollar Shave Club’s marketing and its value proposition is no exception. In this example, the cheeky brand does an impressive job of highlighting value and benefits instead of features while also incorporating its biggest selling point — price. While it’s not entirely clear who the brand is targeting here, for something as universal as shaving, it’s not needed. 

Lean Canvas – как заполнить


Lean Canvas методологически предполагает определенную последовательность заполнения, по факту при заполнении как бы пишется “образ” продукта. Однако я пробовала заполнять в любом порядке, и пришла к выводу, что лично мне комфортнее делать это просто слева направо, даже если это не совсем правильно.

Итак, правильная последовательность заполнения Lean Canvas:

Проблема – перечислите 1-3 основные проблемы, которые вы пытаетесь решить

Сегменты потребителей – перечислите ваши целевые сегменты потребителей

Уникальность ценностного предложения – напишите простое, короткое и понятное объяснение того, почему вы лучше других и почему на вас стоит обратить внимание (=слоган)

Решение – перечислите возможные решения для каждой из описанных ранее проблем

Каналы – опишите свой путь к клиенту (как он о вас узнает?)

Потоки выручки – перечислите свои источники выручки и модели работы

Структура расходов – перечислите свои постоянные и переменные затраты, например, стоимость разработки, стоимость привлечения клиентов, хостинг и т.д.

Ключевые метрики – как вы будете измерять прогресс и результаты?

Скрытое преимущество – что у вас есть такого, что нельзя легко скопировать или купить?

Понятно, что разделы с цифрами должны быть конкретными, коррелировать между собой и показывать, например, воронку (безубыточность при N регистраций), точку самоокупаемости и проч.

Customization

The modern consumer believes in self-expression and individualism. They expect the products they use to be an extension of their personality and a medium through which they can communicate their values and priorities to the world. Providing the option to tailor the product to the consumer’s preferences adds value for the customer. In recent times products have gained heavily on market share through utilizing concepts such as mass customization or customer co-creation. Where traditionally customization has resulted in prohibitively expensive products, today this option provides the opportunity for customers to put their personal stamp on a product while still providing economies of scale.

Nike lets its customers customize their shoes through NikeID on their website. A consumer can go online and create a completely original design with their preferred color palette, placement, color and size of the swoosh etc for their shoes. They can see what the end product will look like visually, play around with different permutations till they reach a result that suits their tastes and then order the final product when they are ready.

Что такое ценностное предложение

Главная причина неудачи бизнеса, основанного на новом продукте, чаще всего заключается в том, что тот оказывается никому не нужным. То есть он не представляет никакой ценности для потребителя. Ценности может не быть по двум причинам: либо продукт не решает проблему, которую должен решать, либо этой проблемы не существует. Проверить, нужен ли продукт потребителю, помогает поиск ценностного предложения.

Ценностное предложение — это объяснение того, как продукт решает проблему, записанное в одном-двух предложениях и понятное любому человку. Его можно составить по формуле:

Ценностное предложение = Проблема + Решение / Продукт

Если проблема существует и ваш продукт ее решает — значит, у вас есть ценностное предложение!

Комментарий:

Питер Томпсон

О ценностном предложении можно говорить, когда продукт компании соответствует желаниям клиента и происходит волшебное совпадение между тем, что вы делаете и что люди хотят купить. Это переломная точка, в которой стратегия бизнеса превращается в стратегию бренда.

Понятно и информативно о ценностном предложении рассказано в лекции наших партнеров, Фонда Развития Интернет-инициатив:

Также рекомендуем посмотреть и оценить 14 примеров невероятно эффективных ценностных предложений.

А теперь — продолжение статьи Питера Томпсона о том, как он создал свой шаблон и почему именно такой.


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