Do you have a powerful value proposition? Or is your competition miles ahead of you? Perhaps it’s time to define your practice better and explain your value in words your clients can understand.
Slack has one of the most exciting value propositions in the business world today. Their statement is simple, yet very compelling, and makes an explicit reference to their users. The following message is about how Slack’s platform benefits its users by making…
“Working lives simpler, more pleasant, and more productive.”
So why is this value proposition so easy to relate to and remember? There are other communication apps with similar offerings. In Slack’s case, it’s the focus on simplifying communication, even between large teams. That’s how it makes collaboration easier in any industry.
Slack has a concise value proposition and it works very well for them. As of October 2019, the platform had roughly 12 million active users per day. And that’s with a user base that’s spread all over the world.
Would you like to know how such a short statement resonates with so many people? Simply put, Slack backs up its value proposition promises. The platform offers more than a basic communication app. It’s a collaborative software tool that facilitates data sharing and project management.
It creates a cloud-based medium where large teams can collaborate on various projects.
The platform is very complex. You could write a short book describing its features and benefits. The diversity of its integrated apps and its user-friendliness make it stand out. And Slack’s value proposition hints at all of that.
Slack makes a powerful promise in a few simple words… and then backs up all its claims. That’s one of the reasons why the platform enjoys so much success around the world. And this serves to show the power of a unique value proposition when combined with excellent service.
Your accounting practice may be VITAL, but what’s the point if you’re not marketing it as such? Using the right value proposition will empower your practice. And here are the tips you need to create a strong statement for your firm.
What Is a Unique Value Proposition?
There are many ways to define a unique value proposition, or USP. In essence, your USP is the concise definition of your firm. It encompasses what you do and how you do it. It showcases why you value your practice the way you do. It’s the reason your practice exists, and how your clients benefit from your services.
For your accounting firm, it may promise that you deliver VITAL accounting services.
Many firms make the mistake of choosing a generic value proposition. It’s easy to copy a template and promise something that everyone else does. Most accounting firms do this in hopes that pricing, location, and other factors might make the difference.
However, this is the wrong approach. It will prevent you from growing and finding your ideal clients.
A unique selling proposition is preferable for several reasons. First of all, it creates separation between you and your competitors. That’s because it presents your company as both valuable and different. It’s all part of designing your brand – and that’s so important we’ve named it a marketing and sales superpower.
Secondly, your USP can show that you address issues that some of your competitors fail to do. So, it can generate additional interest in your practice and your abilities.
Furthermore, a USP offers you the opportunity to speak to a selected audience. An audience that’s better served by your practice.
You can think of your USP as a calling card for your accounting firm. It’s a method of introducing your services uniquely so they stand out from the beginning.
It’s one thing to understand what a unique value proposition is. Crafting the perfect USP is something else again. To create a special message that serves your firm’s goals, try implementing some of the following tips.
Tip #1 – Understand What Your USP Should (And Shouldn’t) Explain
Many accounting firms struggle with offering too many explanations when trying to create their USP. Potential clients are not interested in how you handle your business internally. They want assurances that their pain points will get the necessary attention.
So your USP should focus on defining the unique benefits your practice can offer. Show how the end result of using your services can benefit clients.
Going back to Slack, notice how they promise to make clients’ lives “simpler, more pleasant, and more productive.” They don’t talk about the size of the company’s servers, or how many widgets they have available. The USP concentrates on how the app improves the lives of its users.
Tip #2 – Work Out Who Your Ideal Audience Is
Accounting firms get clients from all types of industries. But, of course, some clients will be a better fit than others. One of the tricks you need to master before writing a compelling USP is figuring out your audience.
Once you know who you want to talk to, you’re closer to writing the ideal message. The message can be straightforward to create if you do two simple things.
- Define your niche or area of expertise in the accounting sphere
- Research potential ideal clients to understand their needs
If you do these two things, it becomes easier to illustrate why you are a VITAL accounting practice in respect to the client’s needs.
Tip #3 – Use Language That Appeals to Your Ideal Audience
If you look at some of the most compelling USPs, from any industry, you’ll notice that the language is simple. There is no need to use technical jargon or complicated phrases. Audiences prefer simple language that’s easy to read and quick to understand.
It makes perfect sense, since your goal is to resonate with your clients immediately. Everything gets easier once you identify your primary audience. Figuring out the pain points that your practice can address should give you an idea of how to express yourself. And how to better define your company for your audience.
The essential thing to remember here is this. Not all audiences have the same needs and preferences. Thus, the best way to approach a USP is to personalise it for your ideal audience.
If you don’t do that, you risk generalising too much. Potential clients may see this type of approach as ordinary.
Because it makes the same promises as a dozen other accounting firms. It makes you part of the pack, not a new and unique solution that stands out. That’s something you should avoid.
Tip #4 – List the Service’s Benefits (And Tie Them into the Value That You Offer)
One of the golden rules of developing a strong USP is being able to explain how “different” means “better.” After all, you’re proposing something unique, compared to your competitors. But you also have to show why your approach is better. Otherwise, it’s just empty talk or boasting.
You can start by identifying the specific benefits that your service provides. This gets you one step closer to showing that you have a VITAL accounting practice. At the same time, it gives you most of your talking points.
After you know what makes your practice different, link that information with the value it offers to your potential clients. And then continually back up your claims.
Your audience can read that your practice is the best in some specific area. But they also need to quickly understand what those claims mean to anyone looking to be your client. Why should your offering matter to them more than your competitor’s?
That’s what you have to explain to your target audience in a sales proposition of a few sentences.
Drive New Business Your Way with a Powerful USP
In just a few years, Slack has reached millions of daily active users. Partly thanks to a service-defining USP that catches the eye. But Slack does more than make promises. Their claims are backed up by the platform’s offering at any time.
What it all comes down to is this. You have to tell a better story than your competition, or market yourself better. One way to do that is with a robust USP that shows a different approach and a specific set of skills.
A good USP does more than list the benefits of working with your practice. It emphasises your results and how those results add value to your client’s business.
It’s also important to create a USP that doesn’t speak to everyone. Rather, your USP should speak to a target audience composed of your ideal clients.
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