Are You Moving Paper or Markets?


The business marketing articles that were published during the past year are filled with advice on how to grow your business and make it more profitable. As a brand marketer you know that it’s essential to look back at the strategic solutions that have worked best and drop the ones that haven’t. That’s a lot better than holding your breadth hoping that your business will grow on its own.

So maybe it’s time to think of new and innovative ways to better serve your customers by considering adding services or reducing pricing or improving your brand messaging. What is absolutely clear is what passed as “leading” just two years ago, is in all likelihood nothing more than what is considered the norm today.

Although there are times for a complete reconstruction of your strategic direction, most of the time what is expedient will take two directions.

  • Update—improve an existing brand message
  • Upgrade—add a new brand message

The work of either begins with a strong value proposition, the heart and soul of any successful brand marketing program. This could take some work, particularly if it’s been a while since you developed one but is definitely worth the effort.

Done correctly, a strong value proposition will continue to drive positive results throughout your brand messaging. For one, your marketing and sales team will be able to better present the services of your company and for another customers will be able to more effectively tell your story for you. The primary ingredients of a successful value proposition are:

  1. Highly differentiated brand—unique to itself so that no other brand can make the same claims.
  2. Highly unique brand promises—interesting and trustworthy claims always outperform generalized statements.
  3. Highly unique track record—having customers who will stand up and be counted for their experiences with your brand.

If you have all three of these values to your credit, then creating a successful value proposition should be a fairly easy task. This will provide you with new ways to tell your brand story and find new angles to revitalize your messaging.

Tom Marin is the president of MarketCues, a national consulting firm. Tom serves as a senior advisor and change-management consultant with 35 years of experience. He has worked for some of the world’s largest corporations, as well as middle-market firms. Tom's focus is to plan and drive strategy shifts and strategic growth programs in the printing industry and a diverse range of market areas.
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