What do Unicorns and Value Proposition Have in Common?

The short answer: They don’t exist!

Now, I’m sure that sounds like lunacy to you. After all, there are books, courses, training manuals, blogs, articles, websites and even retreats devoted to creating value propositions.

Not to mention it is drilled into every marketer’s and salesperson’s head by their company: Lead with your Value Proposition.

It would be devastating to learn that it had all been a waste. That it had all been adream. That you’d been chasing unicorns

So you might want to sit down for the rest of this article!

The idea of the Value Proposition (also known as the Unique selling Proposition) is that you can say something to someone upfront and immediately have them say “I need that.”

That’s like reading just the “Objective” part of somebody’s Résumé and saying“Forget the other applicants. This is the guy we want!”

It’s not how people’s brains work.

Trust me, if people’s brains worked like that, you could simply walk up to people and say “I work for ABC Widgets. Our widgets produce the lowest amount of waste and are cheaper than any competitor when bought in bulk” and close sales all day long.

But you can’t. And you know you can’t. And you have used Value Propositions and USPs and dumped them, and tried new ones and dumped those, and tried other new ones…

And what’s really sad is that most marketers and salespeople are like junkieswhen it comes to Value Propositions and USPs; they know it’s not good for them but they are addicted.

“Hey man, you know where I can score a dime bag of Value Prop?”

By now, your head is spinning. And that is good. You need to shake old ides offbefore you can look at new ones.

So why don’t Value Propositions or USPs work?

The reason they don’t work is because you have no idea what someone else finds valuable!

Everyone is unique. Everyone has their own value system.

Too some people a sunny day is a blessing. To other’s it is a skin-cancer-causing nightmare.

Who is right? Both of them. And that is our problem.

Values are unique. And you can’t “hack” them.

Even the best Value Proposition is still totally subjective and circumstantial.

They only “work” a small fraction of the time. And that only happens with theright person, at the right place, at the right time, with the right need, and theright authority or influence.

Good luck getting all those ducks to line up for you.

The majority of the time, your Value Proposition actually creates subconscious resistance and turns people off. Even if the person could be a client, you have now INCREASED the distance between you.

So what is the answer? If Value Propositions and USPs don’t work, what should you do?

Tease them with context.

Example: Your company sells IT services.

So your Value Proposition or USP might sound something like this: We guarantee 99% up time and the fastest response to your service calls possible.

Sadly, all your competitors say the same thing, so your Value Prop or USP is now DOA.

But, what if you said something like this: We’re like the Santa Claus of IT Services.

Then be silent.

Now the other person’s mind doesn’t have enough information to quantify orqualify you. It is confused. It needs more information.

So he asks “What does that mean?”


The other person’s mind has switched from Dismissal to Curiosity. That tiny change is the difference between being valuable or being worthless to the prospect.

You have teased them with “Santa Claus,” and contextualized them with “IT Services.”

Now you can go on and build your metaphor: Santa has billions of houses to visit but he still gets it done in one night, just like us, etc…

And the prospect is building THEIR OWN value of you internally!

That is the secret. Prospects create their own values.

So when you facilitate them building your value to them – instead of force feeding them the wrong one – you win.

Have fun!

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Business Expos: Nothing But Benefits

There are endless ways to promote your business, especially in today’s technological world. We see advertising, postings, and publicity for tons of brands all the time, but how do you take it to the next level? How do you introduce your brand to the consumer in an interesting and personal way? You bring your brand to a Business and Marketing Exposition.

Bringing your company to a business exposition, or expo, is a way to network your business in a personal manner. You’re bringing your business directly to the consumer, putting a face to your brand. People don’t buy products; they buy the people that sell the products. Bringing the story of your brand to life for the consumer in real time develops that personal connection with your consumer. Building a personal B2C relationship brings your business to the top of the consumers evoke set.

Business Expos not only bring your brand directly to the target market, but they increase networking on a professional level. At a business expo, you’re surrounding yourself with hundreds of other businesses that could potentially benefit you. Keynote speakers, demonstrations and lectures are all at your finger tips to help you benefit your business, no matter what that business may be and improve your craft. Experts in different areas of business and marketing come from all over the country to share the secrets to success with business expos; the benefits of participating are infinite. Interacting with other businesses and building professional relationships can help you improve and build upon your company’s reputation.

Expositions allow you to take your brand and create an experience for the consumer. You’re live and on the spot at an expo, make it worth the consumers while. Experiential marketing tactics are some of the most successful ways to generate brand awareness, and what better way to do that than when the consumer is right in front of you. AdAge predicted in January that experiential marketing would be one of the top B2B marketing trends of 2015, and they were not wrong. Giving the consumer an experience, besides just selling them a product, has been extremely common and successful this year. Huge brands are creating these once in a lifetime an experience for their consumers and the outcome is incredible.  Using a business expo as your platform to kick start an experience would be ideal for smaller brands that are trying to increase awareness, as well as beneficial for larger companies that want to take a new direction in how they promote their services.

The New York Business Expo and the Market New York Expo are two exclusive expositions that bring small business and big businesses alike together to learn more about their businesses, their consumers and sharpen their professional skills.