It is no secret that the value you create for your customers with your products and services will either make or break your business.
But did you know that “universal building blocks” of value exist and you can leverage these to create, bolster, and propel your business forward?
In the August 2018 issue of Rotman Management, Eric Almquist and Jamie Cleghorn presented “The Elements of Value” models for consumers and for business to business. These models are based on their extensive research and fit nicely into the Maslow Hierarchy of Needs framework. This post provides the basics for their Business to Consumer model.
The Consumer Value Pyramid
According to the authors and their research, there are 30 fundamental building blocks of value in the business to consumer model. These 30 elements organize nicely into a four level Hierarchy of Needs pyramid. They are shown in the diagram below and, for the most part, the model is self explanatory.
As stated previously, it isn’t surprising that you must add value to your market in at least one of these areas for your business to be viable. It is also intuitive that the more areas you can address, the more marketplace appeal you will have.
This is illustrated by the following examples the authors provided:
- Fitbit appeals to “Motivation” found in the “Life Changing” level of the pyramid.
- The Container Store appeals to “Organizes” found in the “Functional” level of the pyramid.
- Leica Camera appeals to “Self-Actualization” found in the “Life Changing” level because budding photographers can purchase the same camera that some well known professional photographers use.
- Apple appeals to about 11 of the 30 values identified in this model!
Apple is clearly head and shoulders above most companies and one of the ways they achieve this dominance is by appealing to the consumers through eleven of the values across multiple levels.
So, how can you use this in your business?
6 Ways to Leverage This Into Your Business
There are many ways that you can leverage this model in any business. Here are six ideas for you to consider:
- Clearly understand where you add value to your customers. You can do this through surveys, social media feedback, etc.
- Educate your staff on these areas and ensure everyone understands the importance of these!
- Always strive to reinforce the value that you are adding in every interaction.
- It almost goes without saying, but DO NOT compromise the value that you add. It takes a lifetime to create a brand but one incident can destroy it!
- Identify any new value areas that you could add to your product or service. Begin building this into your organization and your product or service.
- Understand that you may have different groupings of customers or stakeholders and that you may provide different values to these groupings. This is important as companies like Amazon have multiple customer segments that value different things.
Take a few moments this week and define the value building blocks that you provide to your customers.
Then, do an honest assessment of how well you are delivering on these. Do you need to make changes to bolster the value you are providing? Are there areas that you can address that provide more value or can you add new value building blocks?
Finally, review these additional articles for more information:
- How Strong Values Engage Employees and Increase Profits
- Finding Clarity in Leadership Behaviors
- What Does Your Organization Care About
- Get Alignment on Organizational Values
- Is Your Business Missing Out on Valuable Opportunities
- 8 easy Ways to Uncover Your Customer’s Wants and Needs
“Now, if you want to get rich, you have only to produce a product or service that will give people greater ‘use value’ than the price you charge for it.” Earl Nightingale
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