In the words of Abraham Lincoln, “the best way to predict your future is to create it.” In an ever-changing digital world, I think this sentiment is even more applicable.

Being able to not only pre-empt what might be the next big thing but being able to drive it is something many of our clients are striving for. And it’s probably one of the big reasons we have seen an increase in demand for ‘futures papers’. Value propositions that don’t just show customers what you have to offer now, but set a path for the future, based on an in-depth knowledge of their mid to long term strategy and demonstrating how your own innovations and developments will help them achieve this.

By creating a clear vision that is centred on the evolving needs of your customers, and the wider impact the future may have on them, you can position yourself as a long term partner to guide their strategy – rather than just react to it. This will create competitive differentiation and secure revenue growth and up-sell/cross sell opportunities in the long term.

SUGGESTION! Can you give your value proposition a future gazing angle? 3, 5, 10 years out?

How we helped our customer reach new levels with an account-based proposition.

A common situation – our client was struggling to get traction with a major global business. They had sold in a solution at the network level but were finding it hard to elevate conversations beyond that, especially at c-level. They wanted to provide the CIO with a reason to talk to them – and a way to position themselves as a digital transformation partner for the future.

Looking at things differently – we started by first considering the customer. We researched their industry to find out what the major trends were and how these were impacting on the IT decisions being made within their business. We used these trends as the basis for interviews right across our client’s organisation and crafted a bespoke value proposition with an executive summary and 10 individual papers on each trend.

The impact – the Account Director had not just one reason to get face to face time with the client’s executives but ten! We were able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of how the trends linked to the ongoing strategy of the customer and showed not just what our client could do to help them now – but how they could help them evolve over the next 2-5 years. Every step of the way, linking it back to their business and the outcomes it would deliver for them.

TIP: How many customers do you need to target with your value proposition? If it’s only a handful, consider doing them one to one.

Hilary Fenn
Director & Head of Value Proposition Development