Value Propositions – packaging knowledge to support Social Selling

Wurlwind Social Selling - Value Propositions
Knowledge is a wonderful thing, and valuable when it solves problems.

And in business the value increases as we solve bigger and bigger problems, helping people to save time and money, to make money, to reduce risk and so on.

But time is precious, so the challenge is to maximise our value to prospects and customers and minimise the time spent on relatively low value activities.

The good news is that, with a bit of thought and preparation, we can make buying and selling easier by having packaged value propositions.

For the provider or vendor, packaged knowledge becomes easier to sell and to deliver multiple times, and is something to offer and promote through LinkedIn.

And for the buyer it is more tangible to buy, and lower risk if there are recommendations from other happy buyers, and it makes referrals and introductions easier.

And these packages don’t all have to be exchanged for money. They may be offered in exchange for information from the prospect, for example their email address, or filling in a form, or exchanged for their time, for example an exploratory meeting.

Quick start tips

There is a booming market for information products, especially for diagnostics and for training, so this is a good place to start looking for ideas.

  • Could you create a simple information product that you can give away in exchange for an email address or business card?
  • Could you provide a diagnostic or advisory product that enough people would pay £97 or similar for?
  • Could you package your high value products as a framework or methodology around which there are tailoring and customising options?

The additional benefit of this is to raise your credibility as an expert in your area, having invested to create product and gain social proof, endorsements, testimonials and recommendations.

Tips to identify what value propositions are worth packaging

On a simple basis there are three steps to making a sales: Get the buyer’s ATTENTION. Get their TIME. Get their MONEY. And these steps are reflected below.

1. What could you package and offer on a website registration page or in exchange for a business card?

Contact us forms and newsletter subscriptions are passe, as most prospects are looking for something with a much more tangible payback before they part with their email address these days

  • If you’re a Business Leader or Business Owner you could share your insights and expertise by having a book or presentation or even a video made where you impart some of your wisdom.
  • If you’re a Sales Leader or Sales Professional you could develop a compilation of client case studies as a PDF document to email to people on request
  • This is not the time to pitch product, but to assist the buyer to recognise ‘do we have a problem/opportunity?’ and how do I quickly investigate whether there’s a business case for more detailed investigation

Sales Pages and Landing Pages are the foundation of lead generation campaigns, and the payback of the packaged resource behind them is something that can be offered through LinkedIn.

2. Can you turn lead nurture on its head and turn it into Commercial Teaching?

Considered purchases entail research, not just into vendor solutions but also into internal costs and implementation. Vendors who help buyers, including business sponsors and line managers, to do their jobs better can become trusted advisors and heavily influence the purchase.

  • If there’s a time delay between initial interest and the purchase decision (for luke-warm prospects) it works well to deliver Commercial Teaching over a period of time, in which case an email sequence of suitable content could be very effective, and is trackable too.
  • If there is one principle buyer then a 1:1 meeting with an educational agenda, perhaps with some preparatory work for them plus some follow-on steps may be applicable
  • If there are several people involved in the purchase then buyer facilitation to shape the agenda and equip them to gain consensus and actually move forward could be best achieved in a group workshop.

Consider the buying timetable and the decision-making group (research via LinkedIn) and the issues they need to address in order to make a purchase as part of planning your packaged value proposition for this stage in the sales process.

3. Can you create an entry level chargeable educational product to offer?

There may be many people who have limited budgets but who also have a desire to gain an understanding, knowledge and skills in the topic you are an expert in.

  • Can you compile a list of questions that they are asking, plus those you know they should be asking, and structure them into a logical sequence?
  • Is the local market large enough, and the value high enough, for people to come to a training workshop at a suitable venue on a particular day?
  • Can the teaching be delivered at a distance, through webinars and online training (and do you have / can you get the resources to promote and administer this?)
  • Or maybe you can package and deliver this to larger clients on a company by company basis on their premises.

There are many variations available, to support the purchase / sale while also qualifying intent and earning income (or at least contributing to marketing and sales costs) along the way.

Notifying people of the course availability via LinkedIn is an option, and to advise 1st connections to see if the know anyone who would benefit from it.

Download our Pocket Guide to Social Selling

If you haven’t already done so get a copy of our guide, which covers more LinkedIn Tips and introduces the Social Selling Matrix.