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Value Proposition

Where’s The BEEF?

The Value Proposition is a concept which helps to explain ‘why customers buy a product or service’. The Value Proposition can be made up of multiple ‘reasons’, which you must fully understand. Once the proposition is understood, only then can a startup formulate a marketing/selling process, which is effective in communicating value.

The value proposition can contain a number of reasons (rational), for customers to make the buying decision. However, three significant elements are often present in a valid proposition:

  1. Resonates With Buyer:  Want and need for your offering exists.
  2. Differentiates Your Offering:  Makes it possible for customer to see why your offering stands out from others.
  3. Substantiates You Promise:  Buyers believe you will deliver on your promise.


Resonates: Want & Need

Differentiates: How Your Offer ‘stands out’

Substantiates: You Can Deliver

Value Proposition Canvas (3:00)


Design products and services that customers actually want. 

NOTE: video starts & stops at pre-assigned times

Download the Value Proposition Template (pdf)
CC 3.0 Strategyzer AG



Now it’s time to create a Value Proposition Canvas for your startup idea. By doing this you will be able to design a product/service which customers actually want! Print out the Value Proposition Worksheet and complete your VPC Now!

Download the Value Proposition Template (pdf)

Complete The VPC Now!

Suggestion: When doing the VPC try to use some design thinking (see PSD questions below)⇓


Product/Service Design (PSD) questions help founders consider the; scope, position, and solution opportunities of their offering.

Ask yourself the questions below to clarify your startup value proposition:

  1. The User:  Who are the end-users and how are they going to use the product?
  2. The Goal/Purpose:  What are the user objectives & intentions? (functions, interaction, importance of each and priorities)?
  3. User Skill/Experience:  What skills & experiences separate the end-user from the rest of the population?
  4. Product/Service:  What are the multi-disciplinary (functional/non-functional) features of the offering (including production, business issues and development processes)?
  5. Resources & Materials:  What limitations or opportunities are possible (design is limited by materials, appearance, stability etc.)?
  6. Tools & Techniques:  Do you have access to customers (for prototype-MVP), if not what are limitations (how to overcome)?
  7. Perception:  How to present the product/service action possibilities (controls, functions, interfaces, layout, materials, communication etc.)?
  8. Functional Requirements:  What input and control possibilities the product/service offers to the user (what it does, performance, usability etc.)?
  9. Context of Use:  What does the context look like at a holistic level (compared to other solutions, functionality, clarity etc.)?
  10. Pricing:  How close is the design to the target-market-price (remember to take into account behavioral issues)?
  11. Product/Service Palette:  How does product/service uniquely fit into customers complete solution?
Source: Expressive Product Design
Course Curated By: Dr. Gerard L. Danford

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