It’s critical to understand how your service offerings can impact your potential clients. You need to speak to your client and understand what’s in it for them. That’s what people care about. They may know they need your services, but maybe they don’t understand how much. Maybe it’s not a hardcore need, but once they understand the business value, it becomes a need.
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Today we’re going to talk about why it’s important that you understand your company’s value. I’m not talking about your monetary value, although that’s important too. I’m talking about the business value of your offerings.
Whether you offer products or services, it’s important for you to understand what value they have to your prospects. That tells you exactly how you should approach a problem because you believe that you have the solution. But in order to understand that, you have to understand what that problem is costing your prospective clients or customers.
Your Offering’s Value in Different Types of Businesses
Let’s say you offer a service because it’s really hard for service companies to do this as well as product-based companies. For example, web design.
Whether it’s business consulting, business management consulting, or content, other businesses need a content marketing strategy. They need help with their development. They need help with their processes, but what problems do they have and what do those problems cost?
It May Be Worse Not to Have Your Offering
Money and other types of resources, like time, effort, stress, etc. play a role, and they all have a particular amount of value. So even if the monetary return isn’t guaranteed, which is definitely the case with something like content, the stress of not having it done may be worse.
It’s the same with web design. I can’t definitively tell you that having your website professionally designed by this person in my network is going to generate a certain amount of dollars in revenue. However, you already know that not having a properly designed website costs you in terms of SEO.
It costs you in terms of brand sentiment and business impressions. Everybody has a website these days, and if you don’t, then you’re in a very small minority of people. So when you get looked up, you should have a website set up. It makes your business look legitimate.
Tie Emotional Connections to Something Logical
So knowing the value of your offerings to other businesses helps you clarify your message. It can take what started out as an emotional connection and tie it to something logical.
Maybe they met you at a business event and they really like you, but maybe they’re also the CEO and they have to justify this spending decision to the other members of the board. Them liking you isn’t necessarily going to be enough, which is why you need to give them that piece of logic they can use, so you can take the emotional connection they have with you. Give them something logical that they can use to justify the expense and actually move forward with the business.
If they like you, they’re already looking to say yes. So by being clear on the value of your offerings to other businesses, you’re giving them a reason to say yes.
Many service firms fail to articulate how what they do impacts the business. Doing this requires a bit more business knowledge than most small entrepreneurs have.
If you’re a mature, small business or mid-sized company, then you probably already have the knowledge you need to articulate these things properly.
It may not have been clear that it should be tied directly into marketing, but these are all competitive advantages. When you can be very clear about what you do and how it impacts another business’s bottom line, that’s a competitive advantage.
Chart Your Impact
So you want to chart the potential impact of what you can do. There are a couple of ways you can do this.
Case Studies Are Important
You can do it through case studies. So let’s say you’ve worked with companies already, and they’re willing to share the concrete numbers of any sort of impact that it had. In terms of content, a white paper can take 20-30 hours to complete over time, and that project can take 6-8 weeks to do.
An immediate impact that outsourcing a white paper would have is that 20-30 hours is not something that an employee has to clock time for. As a former employee, I couldn’t say that I didn’t spend all 40 of my hours doing work for my company. You do things like go to the bathroom, answer emails, and things like that.
When you outsource content to accompany like Defy The Status Quo, we’re going to have to email back and forth, but you’re not billed for our bathroom trips. That’s kind of where the differences are. Also, 6-8 weeks is a long time. If an employee takes up that project halfheartedly, it may never get done. It may take more time or you may have to consistently remind them.
There’s another metric there because you as the person who’s commissioning the project doesn’t have to do a lot of handholding, which is something that my clients value a lot.
Brand Perception as a Metric
So if you can, it’s always relevant to look at business metrics that are impacted by the project. But if not a direct business metric, maybe something like brand perception.
So again, back to our web design. What is the impact on the perception of the brand? If you’re saying you’re a forward-thinking, innovative, digital marketing company, but your website looks like it’s from 1995… That’s not going to help your brand perception.
Do Your Research
Looking at actual numbers, the business could definitely look up research in terms of marketing and psychology, and see how things like website design or a lack of a website can actually impact sales.
There’s research out there almost guaranteed to help you, and help you add some numbers to turn your business story into a more compelling argument for your services.
You Are Selling Value
As a service-based business, we are often told to sell value. You’re not just selling your service or time. You’re not necessarily selling skill either.
The question I’ll leave you with is: How can you sell value if you don’t know what your value is?
If you’re clear on one business metric that your company’s services help impact, go ahead and leave it for us in the comments. I’d love to have this discussion and explore the logic behind the business metric that you chose.