What Value Really Means To Your Prospects and Customers

Your customer is looking to increase THEIR sales, THEIR customer loyalty, THEIR employee loyalty, THEIR productivity, THEIR morale, THEIR profit, and to have no problems. Are those the values you bring to the table?

The Problem With “Added Value”

Value is perhaps the most illusive word in sales.

Everyone will tell you how important it is, very few can tell you what it is.

I recommend you leave “added value” out of your sales lexicon forever. It also has an evil twin: “value add.” Neither of which can be defined in terms of what the customer actually benefits or profits from.

Expectation Vs. Incentive To Buy

Added value is usually some minor service or hard-to-define extra that the customer already expects, or takes for granted anyway. Things like:

  • Same-day shipping
  • Online ordering
  • Parts in stock
  • 24-hour service

Those elements are expected. They are NOT incentive to buy— rather they’re just part of your business offering.

What Does Your Customer Value?

In order for you to understand the word “value” as it relates to your ability to make a sale, put the word “perceived” in front of it. If you think it’s valuable, and your customer doesn’t perceive it to be valuable, it isn’t value.

Your customer is looking to increase THEIR sales, THEIR customer loyalty, THEIR employee loyalty, THEIR productivity, THEIR morale, THEIR profit, and to have no problems.

Are those the values you bring to the table? No? Why not? Those are the value elements that any customer would consider worthy of the word. Your little add-on services are more of a bonus or extra.

What’s Your Real Mission?

The value is missing from the MISSION. Most companies have a meaningless mission statement that was created by a marketing department.

It’s all about being number one, exceeding customer expectations, and building shareholder value. Barf.

  • What’s your real mission?
  • Is it different from your mission statement?
  • Where’s the value to the customer?
  • Isn’t that the real mission?

You Need A Value Prop That Explains:

  • How you help others
  • How they win
  • How you serve in terms of the customer
  • How your services will lead to loyal customers and referrals

And a mission statement that matches it.

Show Your Customer How They Win

A value proposition states what you do in terms of how a customer benefits.

For example: You might say, “We provide 4-hour service response.” A more effective way to state the same thing is, “When equipment is broken or needs repair, production stops. That’s why we instituted 4-hour or less service response. That way there is minimal loss of productivity and job profitability.”

Same words, but the latter is stated in terms of how the customer wins.

3 Reasons Value Matters To Your Prospect

  1. It differentiates you from the competition.
  2. It gives the customer understandable reasons to purchase.
  3. It gives the customer the peace of mind they need to move forward and to buy.

3 Reasons Value Matters To Your Customer

  1. It builds a real relationship.
  2. It makes re-orders more automatic and less bid-driven.
  3. It eliminates competition. Most competitors thrive on “saving a customer money.” Customers don’t want to save money as much as they want to produce more and make more profit.

When Perception Of Value Counts

At the end of any sales transaction, or when an existing customer has a need, that’s when perception plays its heaviest role.

If the customer perceives a difference in you, and perceives a reassuring value in terms of how he wins, the sale is yours.

If not, the sale goes to the person with the lowest price. Lowest price always means lowest profit.

The more you put value in terms of how they win, how they profit, and how they produce, the more it will be perceived as real value.

In Sales EQ, Jeb Blount takes you on an unprecedented journey into the behaviors, techniques, and secrets of the highest earning salespeople in every industry and field and teaches you how to become an Ultra-High Performer. Download your FREE chapters of Sales EQ here.

About the author

Jeffrey Gitomer

Jeffrey Gitomer is the author of The New York Times bestsellers The Sales Bible,…

Online Courses

Learn anywhere, any time, on any device.


Learn Online

Self-paced courses from the
world's top sales experts

Virtual Training

Live, interactive instruction in small
groups with master trainers


One-to-one personalized coaching
focused on your unique situation