Imagine your business on a speed date. You have 90 seconds to make an enticing first impression. When people are in front of you, you need to get their attention and you need to hold it for the full 90 seconds. Your customers need to know how you can make their lives better. They should automatically turn to you as their first choice.

What’s your unique value proposition?

You need to be able to explain your business in a nutshell. Think deeply about what sets you apart. It’s worth the effort — if you can explain your unique value simply and effectively, your customers will click on too.

Set yourself apart from everyone else

Analyse your strengths. List all the benefits your business offers to customers. It might be value for money, quicker or friendlier service, better technical expertise, unique products, a larger range, a simpler way of doing things, convenience, reliability, exclusivity, a better location, strategic alliances, or something else.

Get to know your customers

Find out what your customers’ lives are like. Understand what their habits are, what they believe in, what challenges they face, what they dream about, and who their friends are.

Think about the main reason they came to you and nobody else. Find out what their experience was like. Learn what they think about you after doing business with you.

If you don’t have many customers yet, think about potential customers.

Show how you improve people’s lives

Link what sets your business apart to solving a problem or improving a situation in your particular customers’ lives. Show the value you can bring.

Write a value proposition statement

Paint a clear picture of how your business is different, and better, with a snapshot statement — known in marketing as a value proposition. Tell people the specific results they will get. Your customers will be motivated to come to you if they clearly believe the benefits you bring outweigh the cost. Try not to use words like ‘wee’, ‘little’ ‘small’, ‘only’, or’ just’ in describing your business because they can undermine the benefit you bring.

Write a value proposition statement that’s easy to grasp. People should be able to read and understand it in a few seconds.

You can find many different templates online to help get you started writing your statement.

Example 1

For [target customers], who [statement of need], our [product or service] does [statement of benefit].

For New Zealand beef exporters who struggle with changeable regulations in Indonesia, our company cuts through the red tape quickly and helps you connect with key people.

Example 2

We can help [target customers] do [statement of need] by doing [statement of benefit].

Our company helps businesses keep their staff for longer by increasing wellness and resilience in the workplace.

Important information

The material is for information purposes only. You should seek professional advice relevant to your individual circumstances. While ANZ has taken care to ensure that this information is from reliable sources, it cannot warrant its accuracy, completeness or suitability for your intended use. To the extent permitted by law, ANZ does not accept any responsibility or liability arising from your use of this information. We recommend seeking financial advice about your situation and goals before getting a financial product. To talk to one of our team at ANZ, please call 0800 269 249, or for more information about ANZ’s financial advice service or to view our financial advice provider disclosure statement see