They say that money makes the world go round. That’s not entirely true. Value does. Now, that’s not to say that value can’t be disguised in monetary form, but it can also come dressed in quality or other benefits. When we see something that’s valuable, we instantly want it; sometimes convincing ourselves that we need it! This is the reason why the word ‘value’ is prevalent in marketing practices. Marketing is sales to the masses. Last week in the #MarketingMinds chat, professionals gathered to discuss the week’s topic: value marketing.

Q1. How do you define customer value in your marketing strategy?

@tandrsolutions believes that value marketing is recognising how a customer perceives the benefits and costs of what’s being sold. One tip offered for maximising value is to focus on our brands unique selling point as this helps differentiate us from competitors. @sambibby and @Animatedgiff feel that value marketing is informing and delivering solutions for a consumer’s need, whether it’s addressing an existing need or creating a new one.

Meanwhile @AliyaS_PRCo describes customer value as encompassing diversity in a communication strategy. The standardise vs. adapt debate has been a hot industry topic for some time. Whilst cost efficiencies arrive from standardising, which may be valuable if low price is what a brand is about, adapting to local needs may also be a useful way of delivering value by ensuring content is relevant and interesting to a particular market. @SMXChat adds that there is no customer in the absence of value and marketing won’t take a brand anywhere in the absence of relevancy. @iamgfc highlights the importance of value marketing, stating a customer will only be valuable to a brand if they find the brand valuable.

Q2. What is your top tip for maximising value?

@iamgfc suggests one way of improving our value marketing strategy is by thinking about what we can do for our customer rather than what our customer can do for us. A customer focused approach is a strong contributor to the overall success of a business due to the satisfaction that the approach ignites. @eksays agrees, stating that we should always start our value marketing strategy with the customer in mind and think of them throughout the whole journey.

@AgentPalmer, @c0Sabrina and @mcsaatchimena reiterate the need to listen to what our customers are saying if we are to improve our value marketing strategy. Social media listening tools, such as Meltwater’s media intelligence platform, provide us with such insights. Social listening tools ensure all indirect feedback about a brand is captured. @eksays explains how this can help brands maintain a positive brand reputation, enabling customer feedback to be acted upon, and delivering a more consistent brand message, both of which are key to building relationships.

@c0Sabrina promotes positive reinforcement and incentivising as another way we can improve value marketing, suggesting we reward the consumer at every touch point to gently push them on to the next level. Meanwhile, @sambibby believes personalisation is key to a successful value marketing programme. By using social media analytics we are able to gain insight into what our specific audience is interested. We can then use this data to deliver targeted content and engage in relevant conversations.

Q3. How do you communicate the value of your product/ service?

@c0Sabrina explains how quality content is a great way of communicating a brand’s value. Writing content around industry news and being proactive in thought leadership can convince prospects of the benefit of using a particular brand. @Animatedgiff reiterates the need for firm understanding of our customers’ needs when creating a successful value marketing strategy. He suggests we do this by listening, analysing, learning and optimising our value marketing strategy based on the results. Moreover, understanding at which stage the customer is in within the purchase funnel is vital; too much too soon will get us nowhere.

@AgentPalmer and @sambibby explain that in a perfect world, our customers would communicate the value of our brand for us via case studies, reviews and speaking opportunities. The Meltwater Media Intelligence tool can help us with community management by segmenting those who have engaged with us so that we can easily identify brand advocates. As my workmate Marc details, brand advocates are 50% more likely to influence a purchase, and advocate word of mouth generates more than twice the sales of paid advertising.

Q4. What are common mistakes made by marketers when communicating value?

@thelaneagency advises we focus on benefits rather than features and make sure these benefit resonate with the customer. In addition to this, @eksays believes common mistakes made when delivering a value marketing strategy include over promising, undermining competition and using buzzwords. @sambibby feels that social media channel selection is important to consider when communicating value: if our customers/ prospects aren’t there to see our message they’ll not be affected by it!

Q5. How do you ensure you maintain value?

Monitoring news around our industry ensured that we stay up to date with up and coming trends.

@AgentPalmer believes that value is maintained by commitment to keep improving , innovating and communicating. @sambibby and @eksays agree, saying our brand should evolve in line with industry trends and changing needs. If we want to stay one step ahead of customers and competition, data analysis can help us understand future shifts in behaviour. @thelaneagency states we should stay close to our customers by constantly engaging with them. This means thanking them, recognising them and nurturing them so that they eventually become brand advocates.

Drop a comment in the box below if you have any tips on how we can improve our value marketing strategy. We’d love to hear from you!