How To Articulate Your Value Proposition In 5 Minutes Flat

Written by Sean McPheat | Linkedin thumb

Develop Your Value Proposition on paperWhat’s most important to your prospects?

When we ask this question, many salespeople we train will answer “to save money!”

And, while that’s often the main topic of conversation, it rarely transpires as the REAL criteria prospects use to make a decision to go with you.

You have to be absolutely clear on what’s driving their decision-making. And it’s necessary for you to know how quickly that decision is made.

How long does it take for us to make a decision?

The word comes from the Latin decisio which means ‘to cut off from’.

You might think it takes a long time to make a decision.

But the actual act of deciding takes mili-seconds.

After you have been contemplating something for a while, your pre-frontal cortex (the part of the brain responsible for most of our conscious decisions) takes over and makes a decision for us.

In fact, some scientists say that part of the brain is our ‘executive decision-maker.

So, when you are with your prospect, you need to make it easy for them to make that conscious decision, and the best way to do this is to, in effect, talk the language their pre-frontal cortex is speaking. How?

Here are some questions you need answering:

  • Understand their key business drivers. What is driving their decision today?
  • What financial constraints are they working under?
  • What strategies are they using to move their business forward?
  • What’s barring them from achieving their goals?
  • How would they measure the value of any solution?

Answers to these fundamental questions will help you articulate your value proposition.

Wordstream articulates a value proposition as something that “tells prospects why they should do business with you rather than your competitors, and makes the benefits of your products or services crystal clear from the outset”

Now, what will make your proposition crystal clear to the prospect?

 It has to resonate with them at the emotional level and make them see how their business will be better off with you than without you.

How can you do this?

It’s about mapping your solution to equate to the decisions your prospect is making and the values they are using in making those decisions.

What’s most important to them?

Increasing productivity?

Improving morale?

Increasing customer satisfaction?

Beating their competition?

Your value proposition has to match and beat these needs.

It has to articulate how you make the prospect’s business better or more profitable or more productive.

Remember, prospects will THINK they need to save money and SAY they need to get the cheapest deal.

But when you ask them what mobile phone they use, or what car they drive, you can virtually guarantee they didn’t get the cheapest phone or car.

Why not?

Because there were other criteria they used to make those decisions.

And the same is true with your solution.

  • Find out what is most important to their future business
  • Ascertain how they will KNOW their decision was right after they have made it
  • Build a picture of how your solution will make their business better
  • Start putting into words what your solution will do for their business

You need to do this in less than FIVE MINUTES!


Because the decision-making process needs to be quick in the prospect’s eyes.

They make decisions in milliseconds, so your proposition has to hit home quickly, firmly and powerfully!

Here’s how to do it:

Reflect back your understanding of the situation the prospect is in

This clarifies the discussion and confirms to the prospect you understand clearly what the real issues are

Take each issue and articulate what the value would be of solving it

This will drive the prospect towards making decisions so they will have solutions to their issues

Create a clear picture of what your solution will do for the issues

No need to reel off a list of product features here. Just tell them what the results will be if they chose you.

Confirm that your solution will be the one your prospect will want in the future

A quick summary of the benefits will ensure you make it easy for the prospect to decide.

You can achieve this in five minutes or less.

Yes, it takes intuition and a clarity of what makes the prospect move forward, but when you have done your research, discovered the main points your prospect wants from a solution and connected your solution with each of those issues, you are ready to provide value and move the whole sales process forward.

And you can do it in five minutes!

Happy Selling!


Sean McPheat

Sean McPheat
Managing Director

MTD Sales Training | Image courtesy of Big Stock Photo

450 sales questions free report

Originally published: 2 November, 2018

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